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Ever wondered what you'd see if you approached Middle-earth from space?

The developers of Outerra (a "3D planetary engine for seamless planet rendering from space down to the surface") have posted some samples of their product to Imgur: stunning renderings of Tolkien's Middle-earth as seen from the ground, in the air - and from space! [more inside]
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Jan 26, 2014 - 32 comments

Smaug Alert

Smithsonian Magazine examines the extent to which Peter Jackson's vision of The Hobbit shows fidelity to Tolkien's text. [more inside]
posted by MoonOrb on Dec 24, 2013 - 104 comments

Can't tell the boys from the girls, which must make it exciting for them

Gary Busey explains the social and biological operations of Hobbits. (SLYT)
posted by FatherDagon on Jan 14, 2013 - 29 comments

Is the beard gray? Does he have a donut-shaped beard extremity? Does he look goofy?

How to identify each Hobbit dwarf by their epic beards
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey on Dec 14, 2012 - 142 comments

New Zealand loves its "precious"

In anticipation of "The Hobbit" movie, New Zealand has issued "Lord of the Rings" themed coins that are legal tender.
posted by reenum on Oct 14, 2012 - 92 comments

And Elmo begat Gladhon

Emil Johansson is attempting to build a Family Tree that holds all of the characters in Middle Earth. As of today, there are 646 entries.
posted by soelo on Jan 21, 2012 - 31 comments

Geography and Science Fiction

GeoCurrents is blog dedicated to "map-illustrated analyses of current events and geographical issues", run by Martin W. Lewis, a Stanford senior lecturer. For the past week, they've been posting a series of articles on imaginary geography. See below for a list of the posts so far: [more inside]
posted by daniel_charms on Jan 6, 2012 - 8 comments

Epic doesn't begin to describe it.

Minecraft: Middle Earth - A tour of a nearly full scale recreation of Middle Earth in Minecraft.
posted by empath on Jul 23, 2011 - 25 comments

Middle-Earth

An interactive map of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth. You can zoom and pan, search for or center a location, and link to a particular area. Place names are labeled in both English and Elvish. [more inside]
posted by gman on Sep 10, 2010 - 27 comments

The pictures and sketches of JRR Tolkien

The pictures and sketches of JRR Tolkien
posted by nthdegx on Sep 16, 2009 - 24 comments

You need to brush up your toes young Hobbit!

The Thain's Book is an online encyclopedia of Middle-earth in the Third Age. Oh, you're an expert? Take the Middle-earth Challenge and prove it!
posted by owhydididoit on Oct 8, 2006 - 11 comments

hobbits and wizards and orcs, oh my!

The Encyclopedia of Arda A reference guide to Tolkien-can't tell an orc from a Uruk-hai? Stumped at what the three kinds of hobbits are? This website has the answers. Nicely laid out site, too.
posted by konolia on Jan 4, 2004 - 7 comments

Overstating Perhaps?

"This is frankly one of the greatest films ever made." Harry Knowles reviews "Return of the King."
posted by adrober on Dec 13, 2003 - 56 comments

Tolkien's Eleventy-first.

Tolkien's Eleventy-first. Today would've been JRR Tolkien's 111th birthday. According to the Tolkien Society, the proper thing to do is to raise a glass at 9 pm and say "The Professor." Mary-Ann was not available for comment.
posted by condour75 on Jan 3, 2003 - 13 comments

If you were expecting the Lord of the Rings movie to receive as much if not more scrutiny from Conservative Christians as Harry Potter did you’re in for a surprise. Despite LOTR being filled with violence and intense fantasy imagery few churches or religious watch-god groups will be condemning the fantasy epic like they did the occult heavy, yet kid-friendly Harry Potter flick.

The reason is simple: Tolkien was a devout Christian.
In fact, Tolkien persuaded C.S. Lewis, who himself later wrote several Christian classics, to become a Christian. The two are credited with paving the way for a new genre of devotional literature, influencing authors like Charles Williams, T.S. Eliot, G.K. Chesteron and Dorothy Sayers.

Fortunately for most Tolkien doesn’t let Christian imagery dribble into his stories the way C.S. Lewis did. So expect religous LOTR friendly reviews from all with the possible exception of the ChildCare Action Project. One has to wonder though - if Harry Potter author, J. K. Rowling, was more publicly religious would her books be as controversial?
posted by wfrgms on Dec 5, 2001 - 38 comments

map of middle earth

map of middle earth courtsey of mapquest ever wonder when product promotions go too far?
posted by vincentmeanie on Dec 4, 2001 - 12 comments

Reasons for Liking Tolkein

Reasons for Liking Tolkein at the London Review of Books. "In his fiction, he created a machine for the evocation of scholarly frisson. The thrills are the thrills of knowledge hidden, knowledge uncovered, knowledge that slips away... what Freud called the 'the uncanny': 'the over-accentuation of psychical reality in comparison with material reality'. Isn't that what being a bookish adolescent is all about?"
posted by rory on Nov 20, 2001 - 16 comments

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