Life Events

1892 Born on January 3 in Bloemfontein, South Africa, where his father worked for Lloyd's Bank

1896 Death of father, Arthur Tolkien. Family moves near Sarehole Mill, outside Birmingham

1900 Enters King Edward VI School, Birmingham

1904 Death of mother, Mabel Tolkien

1908 Meets Edith Bratt

1909 Father Francis Morgan discovers Tolkien's romance with Edith

1911 Enters Exeter College, Oxford to read Classics

1915 Obtains First Class in English Language and Literature. Commissioned in the Lancashire Fusiliers

1916 Marries Edith Bratt. Serves from July to November in the Battle of the Somme and returns to England suffering from "trench fever"

1917 Birth of son John

1920 Appointed Reader in English literature at Leeds University. Birth of son Michael

1924 Birth of son Christopher

1925 Elected to the Chair of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford University

1926 Friendship with C. S. Lewis begins

1929 Birth of daughter Priscilla

1945 Takes up Chair of English Language and Literature at Oxford University. Inklings friend Charles Williams dies

1959 Retires from his work at Oxford

1963 C. S. Lewis dies

1968 Moves to Bournemouth

1971 Death of Edith Tolkien. Returns to Oxford

1973 Dies on September 2

Literary Events

1917 Begins writing tales that later become The Silmarillion

1918 Takes up work with the new Oxford English Dictionary

1925 Publishes Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

1929 Publishes Ancrene Wisse: The English Text of the Ancrene Riwle. Publishes his treatise on Hali Meithhad, or "Holy Virginity"

1930 Begins to write The Hobbit

1936 Delivers the lecture "Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics" to British Academy

1937 Publishes The Hobbit. Begins a sequel that becomes The Lord of the Rings

1939 Delivers the lecture "On ...

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