Tolkien: The Deep Roots of Genius

As Tolkien himself reminds us in his seminal essay/lecture “On Fairy-Stories,” the very spelling of a word has great powers of enchantment. “Small wonder,” he writes, “that spell means both a story told, and a formula of power over living men.” To spell a word is to cast a spell. Even the spelling of “Tolkien” casts a spell.
 

 

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