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Differences between Complete Guide to Middle-Earth revisions?

Gibush

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Ahoy,

I believe the first major revision to The Complete Guide to Middle-Earth (by Robert Foster) was published in 1978.

I've read this short article:
http://lotr.wikia.com/wiki/The_Complete_Guide_to_Middle-earth

Which says that it doesn't include post-Silmarillion material, and that it has been revised in 2001 to coincide with the release of the first movie (according to Amazon, which says "Del Rey; Revised edition (December 4, 2001)").

It says the new, 2001 trade paperback has 569 pages. I got the old 1978 edition in a mass market paperback at a sale - it has 575 pages. I know MM paperbacks usually have more pages, so maybe they added quite a lot for the new version? I just don't understand - if it still doesn't include post-Silmarillion material, what did it add/change? Was it just a re-release to cash in on the movie? (Plus the option to put it back in print, presumably.) I don't know. It does say "revised".

Thanks for any help anyone can give me.


EDIT: I have another question. I've been looking for some nice paperback copies of LotR (I can't afford the awesome 50th anniversary Hardcovers with Tolkien's art on them), and it's very confusing. How do you tell if the paperback you have has the 50th anniversary text? Mine says "authoritative text", but the copy MIGHT be from the 90's, and the 50th anniversary was in the 2000's, right? 2004?

Anyway, can anyone recommend a good paperback set with the newest, best text? I saw there was a set in the UK with the Tolkien covers in a leather box set with the Hobbit, but if I'm paying that much, I feel like I may as well get the HC's.
 
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Sulimo

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I have not read the new one, but there were some major errors in the Silmarillion that they may have fixed. Primarily concerning Gil Galed's parentage, and also where Orodreth actually fell in the family tree.
 

Galin

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I don't have this version either, but so far I'm guessing it was not actually revised for 2001. The intended meaning may be that the revised edition was published again in 2001.


At Amazon there's a version of this book with the same cover as in this article, also noting the publication date of 2001 -- but (unless I missed something) I didn't notice anything there saying that the book was further revised for 2001, and the sources (Sources and Abbreviations page) referred to in the list are the same sources as the older version.

The 'Look Inside' function reveals: First Trade Paperback Edition December 2001, but not that it's been revised, while just above this the Revised and Enlarged edition of 1978 is noted. I would think 'newly revised' would be right on the cover in any case, in order to attempt to also sell to anyone who already had the post-Silmarillion version.
 

Bucky

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I don't get The Guide to M-e'......

I never found anything I didn't already know or need to know in it to be quite honest.
 

Galin

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I actually have the pre-Silmarillion version.

It's awesome.
 

Olorgando

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I have a 1986 reprint of the 1978 second edition (adding the Silmarillion) by Unwin Paperbacks, 440 pages (plus a few with family trees).
And I bought (ordered), in 2016, a 2003 HarperCollins hardback with illustrations by Ted Nasmith, 514 pages.
Interestingly, the Robert Foster copyright in this latter book is still given as 1978.
There is one major difference between the two books.
The older paperback has page numbers referring to four different editions of LoTR (single-volume, hardback and two paperbacks), five different editions of TH, two of the Sil, and six other sources, all identified by letters (A, B, C and D for LoTR etc.) The references to edition and page is given directly in the guide entries.
The newer hardback has three (newer) LoTR editions, two for TH, two newer Sil editions, and the other sources as above. However, the references are no longer given in the guide entries themselves, but rather in an index at the end of the book (using quite a small font!) which runs to 39 pages just on its own.
I mostly use the hardcover to cross-check my 715-page third edition Tyler "Companion", and when both draw a blank, my 800-page German-language "bricks" (2000 paperback, 2016 second edition hardback) surprisingly often come to the rescue.
 

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