Tuesday, September 26, 2017


So, thanks to friend Stephen  and to Janice K. for the links to two online pieces, one by ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY and the other on NPR, on the recently released FLORA OF MIDDLE-EARTH: PLANTS OF J. R. R. TOLKIEN'S LEGENDARIUM by Walter & Graham Judd. (Oxford Univ. Press). At first glance this sounds much like Dinah Hazell's book from about ten years ago (THE PLANTS OF MIDDLE-EARTH: BOTANY AND SUB-CREATION,) which was well-received but seemed on the slight side to me: I'd been hoping for something more along the lines of PHARAOH'S FLOWERS: THE BOTANICAL TREASURES OF TUTANKHAMUN by F. Nigel Hepper, which goes through every piece of plant matter (flowers, woods, seeds) found in Tut's tomb and extrapolated upon what that tells us (e.g. local vs. imported exotic).

Here's the link to the ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY piece, released on August 14th, which includes a good-size excerpt from the book (the entry for 'coffee'):


As for the second piece, it was broadcast on NPR on August 31st and focuses more on the author's explaination of why he did the book; both the original audio program and a transcript thereof are available by pushing the appropriate buttons at the following site:


--John R.

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