JRR Tolkien Letter To Young ‘The Hobbit’ Fan Goes On Auction

Hanson Ross ©

A heart-warming letter that was handwritten by JRR Tolkien and sent over 60 years ago to an eight-year-old fan is up for auction.

Little Christopher Howard received a handwritten letter from The Lord of the Rings author during Christmas of 1961. Having stored the letter in a keepsake box for decades, Mr Howard, who is now 71-years-old, has decided to put it up for sale.

In the full version of the letter, JRR Tolkien shares with the young reader all the “very frightening” adventures still to come in The Lords of the Rings books.

He also admitted that the book may be “very expensive” but that Christopher could always find them in a “very good” library.

Hanson Auctioneers shared the letter on social media with the caption “Why the art of letter writing should never die!”

We couldn’t agree more.

Christopher Howard, now 71-years-old, holding his letter from JRR Tolkien. Credit: SWNS

Mr Howard, who is a renewable energy consultant living in Kent said: “My mother was an English teacher who would read bedtime stories to my younger brother and I.

“And when we were aged six and eight, she started reading The Hobbit to us. I quickly realised I wanted to read it myself, which I did.

“The magical effect of reading words that created pictures in my mind amazed me.”

JRR Tolkien’s handwritten letter in full. Credit SWNS.

Beautifully handwritten in Tolkien’s signature penmanship, the letter went up for sale on April 12 at Hanson Ross auctioneers with a guide price of between £8,000 and £10,000.

It’s yet to be revealed how much the letter sold for.

Christopher’s old copy of The Hobbit, alongside his letter. Credit: Hanson Ross.

Amanda Butler, head of operations at Hanson Ross, said: “It’s a wonderful find, a very touching, kind and personal letter.

“Professor Tolkien was a busy man, and yet he found time at Christmas to write to a young fan.

“It’s hard to imagine any celebrity today composing something so special.”

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Hannah McLaren

I've worked at DC Thomson for six years! I began as an intern at My Weekly and The Scots Magazine, which was extended by a few months to help out at The People's Friend. I then covered maternity as Celebrity Editor for My Weekly, before I became Multimedia Journalist at The Scots Magazine. Currently I'm writing digital content across each title.