Christopher Tolkien, Son of J.R.R. Tolkien, Passes Away at 95

by : Niamh Shackleton on : 16 Jan 2020 18:26
Christopher Tolkien, Son of J.R.R. Tolkien, Passes Away at 95The Tolkien Society/ New Line Cinema

Christopher Tolkien, son of the late J.R.R Tolkien, has passed away at the age of 95. 

Christopher’s father was the author of The Lord of The Rings and Christopher continued his father’s work after his death – he also went on to write his own books as well.


In a statement, the Tolkien Society said: 

Christopher Tolkien has died at the age of 95. The Tolkien Society sends its deepest condolences to Baillie, Simon, Adam, Rachel and the whole Tolkien family.

Christopher was the third son to J.R.R and mother Edith Tolkien and was born in Leeds.


After joining the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, Christopher studied English at Trinity College, Oxford. He later became his father’s literary executor after he died in 1973.

Christopher drew the original maps for The Lord of The Rings that decorated the books released across the 1950s after the success of the prequel, The Hobbit.

Christopher Tolkien DiesPA images

In 2001, Tolkien expressed concerns about his father’s book being made into a film, questioning how the interpretation of it compared to the book.


In an interview with Le Monde newspaper in 2012, the late author criticised the film franchise saying they ‘gutted the book’ and made it more of an action film for young adults.

Following the news, fans have taken to twitter to express their condolences.

One person said:

A great man who will be missed. “Together we will take the road that leads into the West / and far away will find a land where both our hearts may rest”


Another fan tweeted: 

RIP Christopher Tolkien, I’m so grateful for him tirelessly working for decades to compile & bring his father’s work to the public, the stories mean so much to me.


Christopher’s work wasn’t only recognised by his and his father’s fans; the 95-year-old won the Bodley Medal in 2016 for his outstanding contribution to literature, culture, science, and communication.

It is thought the late author and novelist died in France where he lived with his second wife, Baillie Tolkien, with whom he has two children: Adam Reuel Tolkien and Rachel Clare Reuel Tolkien.

Christopher also had another child from his first marriage, Simon Mario Reuel Tolkien.

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence, contact Cruse Bereavement Care via its national helpline on 0808 808 1677.

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Niamh Shackleton

Niamh Shackleton is a pint sized person and journalist at UNILAD. After studying Multimedia Journalism at the University of Salford, she did a year at Caters News Agency as a features writer in Birmingham before deciding that Manchester is (arguably) one of the best places in the world, and therefore moved back up north. She's also UNILAD's unofficial crazy animal lady.

Topics: News, Books, Film, Lord of the Rings