Creative processes can often be unpredictable and uncontrollable. It is especially true when applied to writing. Planning to create a piece, a writer might end up somewhere totally different from his initial intention, but by doing so to open a new door offering a fascinating path to take. It is very likely that when J. R. R. Tolkien put pen to paper following a request to write an introduction to George MacDonald’s Golden Key, little did he know where it would take him. Read more
Mortals’ attitude to Faërie and being there defines the nature of their experience in the Otherworld. Arrogance, impudence, importunity or inner evil, though unwitting at times, can lead to various degrees of disaster. What is the best way to approach Faërie then? There is a character in Tolkien’s writings who shows how mortals can visit the world of Elves happily, enjoy the experience and become enlightened by it. It is Smith from Wootton Major. Read more
“Faërie is a perilous land, and in it are pitfalls for the unwary and dungeons for the overbold”.
J. R. R. Tolkien (On Fairy-Stories)
When it comes to Faërie, mortals must exercise great care in dealing with it. While the land of eternal life and plenty presents a desirable destination for many, it is not fit for earthly beings, save for a temporary abode or occasional visits, most likely for a special reason and with a seal of approval from Faërie inhabitants themselves. Read more
All roads are now bent
Over the course of Ages, the Sea in Arda was becoming an increasingly impenetrable obstacle on the way to the Blessed Realm. Having gone the whole way from being a passable border between two continents to the realm of confusing waters and magical islands, the Sea turned into the border between two worlds within different planes of the universe.
Magical animals play a significant role in various legends and mythologies. Signalling proximity to the borders of Faërie, these beasts always appear for a reason and are a sign for those characters encountering them. Read more
In the Third Age there remained only a few Elvish realms around Middle-earth. They were the places of uttermost beauty and peace as well as among the safest places in the land. In The Lord of the Rings we see Frodo and the company stay a while at Rivendell and Lothlórien – the realms that, among many gifts, brought them spiritual and physical rest, peace of mind and comfort if only for a while.