Hwæt is the first word of Beowulf, where the poet put it to arrest the attention of his audience.  It is the direct ancestor of the modern English word 'what,' but in this context it has been translated by everything from 'What ho!' (Earle, 1892, known around here as the Wooster Version) to 'So' (Heaney, 2000).  So, I placed it here, to get you to inquire 'what?' or exclaim 'hwæt!' and to read on.

This page is intended as a brief introduction to the other pages that follow.  There you will find links to notes on The Lord of the Rings (the books, not the films) and other works, authors, and subjects that I will be publishing from time to time.  It seemed that it would be easier to find these posts later if they were organized in some fashion.  That is, of course, assuming someone besides me will ever wish to find them, which is perhaps a rather cheeky assumption. 

I hope that what I offer will be of both merit and interest. I read a fair bit of scholarship on Tolkien, but I don't have the time and resources to devote to the study of all the articles and books that have appeared in recent years. The works I have consulted in general may be found here. Whenever I am drawing on a specific source I will cite it.  The laborer is worthy of his hire, and the scholar of his footnote.  I also owe a great debt of pleasure and education to the many different podcasts by Corey Olsen that I have heard or been able to participate in.  The discussions there always provoke thought.

But what I enjoy most is reading the primary texts closely, and most of what I publish here will be the result of my own readings of the texts.  I know it is also my hope that some of the posts that result will even be short.

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