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The inspiration for Tolkien's ring The Tolkien Society’s Education Officer, Lynn Forest-Hill, currently has an article in History Today, currently in the shops (21 December 2013). Ancient Norse and English Myths and Tolkien This episode of Open Book opens with a discussion on a new collection of North European vernacular mythologies (in translation), including Beowulf and The Elder Edda. Their distinctive pessimism, and their influence on Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings, is mentioned. Tolkien knew the Volsunga Saga well from his teens, and there is not the slightest doubt that it influenced him a great deal, as did Beowulf.
Related: Tolkien, Hobbit & Lord of the Rings
• J.R. R. Tolkien