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The Real Middle Earth

Exploring the Magic and Mystery of the Middle Ages, J.R.R. Tolkien, and "The Lord of the Rings"

Brian Bates

Palgrave Macmillan Trade

J.R.R. Tolkien claimed that he based the land of Middle Earth on a real place. The Real Middle Earth brings alive, for the first time, the very real civilization in which those who lived had a vision of life animated by beings beyond the material world. Magic was real to them and they believed their universe was held together by an interlaced web of golden threads visible only to wizards. At its center was Middle Earth, a place peopled by humans, but imbued with spiritual power. It was a real realm that stretched from Old England to Scandinavia and across to western Europe, encompassing Celts, Anglo Saxons and Vikings. Looking first at the rich and varied tribes who made up the populace of this mystical land, Bates looks at how the people lived their daily lives in a world of magic and mystery. Using archaeological, historical, and psychological research, Brian Bates breathes life into this civilization of two thousand years ago in a book that every Tolkien fan will want.

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Praise for The Real Middle Earth

"This is the only book that I have ever read that manages literally to evoke the magic of Anglo-Saxon England, rooting the medieval texts firmly in a landscape, a people and a sense of experience. It situates the English in one corner of a vast enchanted world.” -Ronald Hutton, Professor of History at the University of Bristol and author of The Pagan Religions of the Ancient British Isles

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Brian Bates

  • Brian Bates is a Professor at the University of Brighton. He is the author of the bestselling novel, The Way of the Wyrd. His most recent book is The Human Face, co-written with John Cleese.
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    The Real Middle Earth

    Exploring the Magic and Mystery of the Middle Ages, J.R.R. Tolkien, and "The Lord of the Rings"

    Brian Bates

    • Trade Paperback

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