JRR Tolkien Statistics

JRR Tolkien Statistics

Top JRR Tolkien statistics

  • JRR Tolkien’s books have sold more than 150 million copies
  • Claims that new figures after 15 years with no update make him amongst the top-selling authors of all time are unproven – these claims state that over 600 million copies have been sold
  • NewsCorp bought Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for $349 million. This added the US rights to the UK rights that NewsCorp already owned
  • The Lord of the Rings was voted book of the 20th century by Waterstones customers in the UK
  • In a recent survey of 76,000 Americans, Lord of the Rings was voted America’s 5th favorite book
  • In the same survey Tolkien was voted as America’s 9th favorite author
  • Movies based on Tolkien’s books have made over $5.5 billion at the box office

The works of JRR Tolkien

  • JRR Tolkien technically only published two novels in his lifetime – The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings
  • He viewed The Lord of The Rings as a single piece of work but his publishers broke it down into a trilogy
  • Most people would say that JRR Tolkien published 4 novels in his lifetime
  • He also released two books of poetry in his lifetime – The Adventures of Tom Bombadil and The Road Goes Ever On.

Published during his lifetime

1954The Fellowship of the Ring
1954The Two Towers
1955The Return of the King

Published after death

1974Bilbo’s Last Song
1975Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings
1977The Silmarillion
1980Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth
2002The History of Middle-earth
2005Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings
2007The Children of Húrin
2007The History of The Hobbit
2017Beren and Lúthien
2018The Fall of Gondolin
2021The Nature of Middle-earth
2022The Fall of Númenor

Facts about JRR Tolkien’s life

  • Tolkien’s full name is John Ronald Reuel Tolkien
  • Tolkien was an Oxford professor, academic and philologist (historical linguist)
  • Tolkien fully developed 2 languages – Quenya and Sindarin – to the point that they were usable
  • He created up to 15 dialects of Elvish languages to at least some extent
  • Estimates suggest that he created around 20 languages in total
  • Tolkien and CS Lewis (author of The Chronicles of Narnia) were close friends but drifted apart in the late 40s
  • JRR Tolkien was a Roman Catholic
  • Tolkien’s wife was called Edith Tolkien (née Bratt)
  • She was born in 1889 and died in 1971, two years before Tolkien
  • She is known to have inspired at least two of Tolkien’s characters – Arwen Undómiel and Lúthien Tinúviel
  • JRR Tolkien was born in modern day South Africa in 1892
  • He died in England in 1973 at the age of 81