Letter 210

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“The Lord of the Rings may be a ‘fairy-story’, but it takes place in the Northern Hemisphere of this earth: miles are miles, days are days, and weather is weather.”

“The Orcs are definitely stated to be corruptions of the ‘human’ form seen in Elves and Men. They are (or were) squat, broad, flat-nosed, sallow-skinned, with wide mouths and slant eyes: in fact degraded and repulsive versions of the (to Europeans) least lovely Mongol-types."

"…I dislike equally any pull towards ‘scientification’…no analysis in any laboratory would discover chemical properties of lembas that made it superior to other cakes of wheat-meal."

"In such a time private ‘chambers’ played no part. Theoden probably had none, unless he had a sleeping ‘bower’ in a separate small ‘outhouse’. He received guests or emissaries, seated on the dais in his royal hall. This is quite clear in the book…”

“Though I have somewhat enriched the culture of the ‘heroic’ Rohirrim, it did not run to glass windows that could be thrown open! … (The ‘east windows’ of the hall, II 116, 119, were slits under the eaves, unglazed.”