The Treason of Isengard – J.R.R. Tolkien

This is the second part of the History of the Lord of the Rings, and the 7th volume in the  History of Middle Earth.  Tolkien’s son is going through the original drafts and reconstructing some of the thought processes and phases in the development of the story.

What is interesting here is how some parts of the take pop up in one step, and others change over and over.  There are many alterations in the scene where the fellowship breaks up…Boromir doesn’t die in some, they are on different sides of the river at times, Merry and Pippin do not get kidnapped.

On the other hand, the scene at Cirith Ungol where the orcs grab Frodo is almost complete, long before the narrative gets there.  The pass even moves location from the Black Gate to Minas Morgul.

The book stops at the point where Gandalf reaches Rohan, more or less in the middle of the Two Towers.

Pretty interesting stuff.

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