THE LORD OF THE RINGS. Comprising The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King.

First printing of second edition (or the first revised edition). Signed by J. R. R. Tolkien. Tolkien Family copy. Three volumes. Bound in the publisher's original red cloth with gilt titles to the spine, in dustwrapper. Top edge red. Folding map to the rear of each volume. An excellent near fine set, the bindings square and firm, the cloth and gilt bright and fresh. The contents, each volume with the ownership inscription of the author's first grandson Michael G. R. Tolkien to the front endpaper, who adds "(signed by grandfather)" are otherwise clean and bright throughout. The front endpaper of Return of the King is wrinkled towards the bottom. Complete with the near fine lightly rubbed dustwrappers that are ever so slightly toned to the edges of the rear panels otherwise bright and without loss or tears. None are price-clipped (25s net to the front flap). All three dustwrappers are in the correct first printing state with publisher's overprinted correction to the lower front flaps of volumes II & III. Housed in a bespoke green quarter morocco solander case, with titles in gilt to the spine. A stellar example of this important Lord of The Rings printing.

All three volumes are signed by J. R. R. Tolkien in black ink on the half title. The first printing of the second edition with a new foreword by the author, a new dustwrapper design and the author's revisions to the first edition text throughout. Provenance: Michael George Ruell Tolkien, the author's first grandson; private US collection. Poet and critic Michael G. R. Tolkien shared his grandfather's love for the written word, reading English at St. Andrews University and until 1992 teaching as head of English at Uppingham School, Rutland. He sits on the board of the Tolkien Estate and has lectured on the works of, and his relationship with J. R. R. Tolkien. "I am going to be quite specific about my grandfather's impact upon me at certain formative periods of my life: for example, I was obliged to study Anglo-Saxon and Mediaeval texts as part of my Eng. Lit course at St Andrews university in the mid'60s. He was an acknowledged authority on and currently translating some of these works, and we corresponded copiously then. Quoting from some of the mostly unpublished letters will serve my dual purpose of establishing a picture of the author and revealing his part as a grandparent. I lent all my letters to Humphrey Carpenter when he was co-operating with my uncle Christopher to publish a selection in 1978. He said '(these) are full of good things of every kind and reflect the very great range of his mind '. By coincidence my grandfather gave the Andrew Lang Memorial lecture at St.Andrews University in 1938". (Michael G. R. Tolkien: Autobiographical essay on my grandfather, J.R.R. Tolkien, 1995) (Bleiler; Hammond & Anderson A5e).

Stock code: 22323


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