Tolkien’s full name is John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (B. 3 January 1892, Bloemfontein, South Africa. D. 2 September 1973, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK). These days mostly refered to as “Tolkien”, his first name is Ronald. He was born to english parents Arthur and Mabel and had a younger brother named Hilary. The father died 1896, the year after the birth of the younger brother, when Mabel and the boys where in England. At the year of 12 Mabel died.
As a young man Tolkien studied at the Oxford University and would also serve in the British Army during WW1. At this time, 1916, he had already started to imagine the events that would become The Silmarillion. 1925 Tolkien became Professor of Anglo-Saxon. He was a close friend with C.S. Lewis, with him he formed the literary discussion group the Inklings.
In his writing, Tolkien were famously inspired by early germanic literature, poetry and mythology such as Beowulf and Norse sagas. Being a catholic, the catholic theology and imagery have had an impact on the foundation of his works. The Hobbit was Tolkien’s breakthrough and it prompted a follow-up, The Lord of the Rings, which resonated well with readers globally and are considered one of the most popular works of fiction since the 60’s. Since his death, Tolkien’s son, Christopher, has analyzed and edited a lot of material left by Ronald. Much of this have been posthumously published of which The Silmarillion is the best known. Christopher have had a life-long commitment to the stories of his father and is much to thank for the abundant of material available for us readers.