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Christopher Tolkien awarded Bodley Medal
Credit: François Deladerrière / © The Tolkien Estate Limited 2016

Christopher Tolkien has been awarded the Bodley Medal.

The Bodley Medal is awarded by the Bodleian Libraries at the University of Oxford to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to literature, culture, science, and communication.

Since J.R.R. Tolkien’s death in 1973, Christopher Tolkien has edited an extraordinary number of his father’s unpublished texts.

The posthumously published works include The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales, and The History of Middle-earth series. More recently he has edited The Children of Húrin, The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún, The Fall of Arthur, and Beowulf, with Beren and Lúthien due to be published in May next year.

Tolkien Society chair Shaun Gunner said: “Christopher Tolkien is a very worthy recipient of the Bodley Medal not only for his own work but for the decades of tireless dedication he has shown in editing his father’s texts. From The Silmarillion to next year’s Beren and Lúthien, Christopher has opened up new vistas of Middle-earth that otherwise might never have seen the light of day. This award is a testament to Christopher’s quiet scholarship as an editor, and a symbol of the continuing significance of J.R.R. Tolkien’s legendarium.”

Christopher Tolkien said: “Although I have never looked for anything remotely of such a kind, I find it especially welcome to receive the Bodley Medal in that it affirms the unique significance of my father’s creation and accords a worthy place in the Republic of Letters to Tolkien scholarship. It gives me particular pleasure that the award comes from and is conceived by the Bodleian, where a great part of my father’s manuscripts lie and where I have happy memories of the great library itself.”

About the Author: Daniel Helen
Daniel is an Officer without Portfolio and Trustee of The Tolkien Society. Elected in 2014, he is mainly responsible for the Society's digital operations, including this website.