I was fairly sure that you would know about it, Dorwiniondil, and I hope I didn't come across as accepting Charlton's position as such— while I think he has a considerably better case for the 1945-6 period than he has for the 1948-50 period, I also think that we can probably trust Tolkien's own interpretation when he said that he came‘near to a real breakdown’ (emphasis added) and that we can accept Hammond & Scull's interpretation when the say for the period end of February — March 1946 that ‘Tolkien is ill, the result of various worries.’ (emphasis added). The most pertinent entry in Hammond & Scull's Chronologyis:
My purpose is two-fold here: one is to emphasize the severity of the pressure under which Tolkien found himself in this period, and the other to investigate the extent to which writing The Notion Club Paperswas a reaction to the stressful situation (and in the same period he also began or wrote in manuscript the new‘round-world version’ of the Ainulindalë). Charlton's views, while certainly controversial (and, to my best ability to tell, not fully supported by the available evidence), are also, in my opinion, a good way to spur some discussion of the relations between Tolkien's psychological state at the time and his writings; if such relations can at all be unravelled— I'm quite willing to accept that this might not be the case, but I think some discussion of this might be interesting
25 March —1 April 1946
Tolkien stays at New Lodge in Stonyhurst, Lancashire, where his son John had stayed several times in the period 1942-5. In the register Tolkien firmly declares himself ‘English’ rather than (as in other entries) ‘British’. In a letter to Stanley Unwin on 21 July 1946 he will say that he came ‘near to a real breakdown’ around this time, and went away and ‘ate and slept and did nothing else, by orders, but only for three weeks, and not for the six months that my doctor prescribed ... but I came back to a term so troublous that it was all I could do to get through it’ (Tolkien-George Allen & Unwin archive, HarperCollins).The J.R.R. Tolkien Companion and Guide: Chronology
Edited by: Troelsfo
Troels Forchhammer, physicist, Denmark
The love of Faery is the love of love: a relationship toward all things, animate and inanimate, which includes love and respect ...