Happy 121st birthday, J.R.R. Tolkien! Little did he know that his incredible fantasy novels would turn into a ridiculous, gazillion-dollar movie franchise, but just goes to show how timeless and beloved his books really are. And he continues to live on in them! So, if you haven't read any of his works, ranging from of course The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit to The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun and his numerous poems, maybe today, on his birthday, would be a good time to start!
Yep, Tolkien was born on January 3, 1892, and to help get you in the spirit and celebrate with some nerdy books and movies, here's a roundup of our 12 favorite funny, poignant, awesome quotes from the brilliant author.
1. "It's a job that's never started that takes the longest to finish."
2. "It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him."
3. "Nearly all marriages, even happy ones, are mistakes: in the sense that almost certainly (in a more perfect world, or even with a little more care in this very imperfect one) both partners might be found more suitable mates. But the real soul-mate is the one you are actually married to."
4. "It's a dangerous business going out your front door."
5. "His house was perfect, whether you liked food, or sleep, or work, or story-telling, or singing, or just sitting and thinking, best, or a pleasant mixture of them all."
6. "War must be, while we defend our lives against a destroyer who would devour all; but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend."
7. "Above all shadows rides the sun."
8. "Fantasy remains a human right: we make in our measure and in our derivative mode, because we are made: and not only made, but made in the image and likeness of a Maker."
9. "No language is justly studied merely as an aid to other purposes. It will in fact better serve other purposes, philological or historical, when it is studied for love, for itself."
10. "A real taste for fairy-stories was wakened by philology on the threshold of manhood, and quickened to full life by war."
11. "I believe that legends and myths are largely made of 'truth.'"
12. "If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world."
Are you a J.R.R. Tolkien fan? Did you know it was his 121st birthday today?
Image via Wikimedia Commons