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Letters From Father Christmas

Letters From Father Christmas

Автор J.R.R. Tolkien

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Letters From Father Christmas

Автор J.R.R. Tolkien

оценки:
4.5/5 (35 оценки)
Длина:
182 страницы
1 час
Издатель:
Издано:
15 февр. 2012 г.
ISBN:
9780547964027
Формат:

Описание

Every December an envelope bearing a stamp from the North Pole would arrive for J.R.R. Tolkien’s children. Inside would be a letter in a strange, spidery handwriting and a beautiful colored drawing or painting. The letters were from Father Christmas.

They told wonderful tales of life at the North Pole: how the reindeer got loose and scattered presents all over the place; how the accident-prone North Polar Bear climbed the North Pole and fell through the roof of Father Christmas’s house into the dining room; how he broke the Moon into four pieces and made the Man in it fall into the back garden; how there were wars with the troublesome horde of goblins who lived in the caves beneath the house, and many more.

No reader, young or old, can fail to be charmed by Tolkien’s inventiveness in this classic holiday treat.

Издатель:
Издано:
15 февр. 2012 г.
ISBN:
9780547964027
Формат:

Об авторе

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on the 3rd January, 1892 at Bloemfontein in the Orange Free State, but at the age of four he and his brother were taken back to England by their mother. After his father’s death the family moved to Sarehole, on the south-eastern edge of Birmingham. Tolkien spent a happy childhood in the countryside and his sensibility to the rural landscape can clearly be seen in his writing and his pictures.


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Letters From Father Christmas - J.R.R. Tolkien

1920

Christmas House,

North Pole

22nd December 1920

Dear John

I heard you ask daddy what I was like and where I lived. I have drawn me and my house for you. Take care of the picture. I am just off now for Oxford with my bundle of toys - some for you. Hope I shall arrive in time: the snow is very thick at the North Pole tonight. Your loving Father Christmas

1923

North Pole

Christmas Eve: 1923

My dear John,

It is very cold today and my hand is very shaky—I am nineteen hundred and twenty four, no! seven! years old on Christmas Day,—lots older than your great-grandfather, so I can’t stop the pen wobbling, but I hear that you are getting so good at reading that I expect you will be able to read my letter.

I send you lots of love (and lots for Michael too) and Lotts Bricks too (which are called that because there are lots more for you to have next year if you let me know in good time). I think they are prettier and stronger and tidier than Picabrix. So I hope you will like them.

Now I must go; it is a lovely fine night and I have got hundreds of miles to go before morning—there is such a lot to do.

A cold kiss from

Father Nicholas Christmas

1924

December 23rd 1924

Dear John

Hope you have a happy Christmas. only time for a short letter, my sleigh is waiting. Lots of new stockings to fill this year. Hope you will like station and things. A big kiss.

with love from

Father Christmas

Dear Michael Hilary

I am very busy this year: No time for letter. Lots of love. Hope the engine goes well. Take care of it. A big kiss.

with love from

Father Christmas

1925

Cliff House,

Top of the World,

Near the North Pole

Christmas 1925

My dear boys,

I am dreadfully busy this year—it makes my hand more shaky than ever when I think of it—and not very rich; in fact awful things have been happening, and some of the presents have got spoilt, and I haven’t got the North Polar bear to help me, and I have had to move house just before Christmas, so you can imagine what a state everything is in, and you will see why I have a new address, and why I can only write one letter between you both.

It all happened like this: one very windy day last November my hood blew off and went and stuck on the top of the North Pole. I told him not to, but the North Polar Bear climbed up to the thin top to get it down—and he did. The pole broke in the middle and fell on the roof of my house, and the North Polar Bear fell through the hole it made into the dining room with my hood over his nose, and all the snow fell off the roof into the house and melted and put out all the fires and ran down into the cellars, where I was collecting this year’s presents, and the North Polar Bear’s leg got broken.

He is well again now, but I was so cross with him that he says he won’t try to help me again—I expect his temper is hurt, and will be mended by next Christmas.

I send you a picture of the accident and of my new house on the cliffs above the North Pole (with beautiful cellars in the cliffs). If John can’t read my old shaky writing (one thousand nine hundred and twenty-five years old) he must get his father to. When is Michael going to learn to read, and write his own letters to me? Lots of love to you both and Christopher, whose name is rather like mine.

That’s all: Good Bye

Father Christmas

P. S.

Father Christmas was in a great hurry—told me to put in one of his magic wishing crackers. As you pull, wish, and see if it doesn’t come true. Excuse thick writing I have a fat paw. I help Father Christmas with his packing: I live with him. I am the GREAT (Polar) BEAR

1926

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  • An adorable collection of letters Tolkien wrote to his children from the perspective of Father Christmas. These whimsical tales are great to read along with your children and will be sure to put a smile on everybody's face. Shows a different side of fantasy master Tolkien.

    Scribd Editors

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  • (4/5)
    Reading this as an adult, what comes across most strongly is Tolkien's love and affection for his children (which is, of course, what one would expect of all parents for their children, but which sadly is not always so) and his delight in writing and drawing these little Christmas stories each year.

    Due to the very young age of his eldest son when the first letter was written in 1920, these early missives are very short, but in 1925 we get a longer message which introduces us to the North Polar Bear, who will feature every year thereafter, and a beautiful little painting of the NPB wrecking the North Pole itself, smashing Father Christmas's house, and a picture of the new house that he builds to replace it.

    The Letters were never intended for publication and it's a testament to Tolkien's remarkable skill at storytelling that simply collecting them together makes such a delightful book. The Letters do continue themes from one year to the next and the characters are likeable, funny and have their own personalities.

    The last couple of letters, addressed just to his youngest child, Priscilla, by this time, are quite poignant. It seems that she has been too busy to write to Father Christmas, but he has a good idea, anyway, of what she would like in her stocking (books, of course). In 1943, Father Christmas supposes that Priscilla will be hanging up her stocking just once more, and there was to me a feeling that, perhaps, she would not have missed Father Christmas's letters had they stopped a little earlier. Sometimes it's hard for parents to accept that their children have grown up. Nevertheless, Father Christmas assures Priscilla that he will never forget her, nor her brothers, and that when they have children of their own he may write again.

    A magical story to read with younger children, although I suspect that they might be wanting some letter from Father Christmas themselves afterwards, so be warned!
  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Beginning in 1920, when his oldest son, John, was three years old, and continuing through 1942, by which time Michael, Christopher and Priscilla had joined the Tolkien family, J.R.R. Tolkien - author of such fantasy classics as The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings - wrote and illustrated a yearly missive from Father Christmas, mailed to his children through the post, or magically smuggled into their house, sometime Christmas Eve night. Beginning with the 1925 letter, this collection - edited by Tolkien's daughter-in-law Baillie - reproduces the text of those letters, and the artwork that accompanied them. There is also a selection, notably including the first letter, from 1920, of facsimile reproductions of "Father Christmas's" own hand-written sheets.**What lucky children those Tolkiens were! Imagine receiving such entertaining little stories every year, complete with darling illustrations, and creative little details, like the hand-crafted "arctic" stamps and postage marks. What great care Tolkien obviously took with these letters, and what a delightful result! From the well-meaning but bumbling North Polar Bear, whose accidents were always endangering Father Christmas' scheduled gift delivery, to the long-suffering Father Christmas himself, patient and amused (mostly) at the foibles of his companion and assistant, everything about these stories appealed to me. Like so many other readers, I was struck by themes here - particularly as it relates to the ever-present threat of Goblins - that reminded me of Tolkien's greater works of epic fantasy. Definitely one that children with a fondness for Santa tales will want to read (I think I may dig out my copy of L. Frank Baum's The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus, and contrast and compare), as will Tolkien fans interested in the evolution of his storytelling.**The edition I read, sadly, left off with the 1939 letter, although I understand that later reprints contain all of them, including those from 1920-24 and 1940-42.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (3/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    There are very few Christmas themed books that I'm likely to enjoy -- they all seem so gimmicky -- and only one album of Christmas music that I will consent to listen to (Thea Gilmore's Strange Communion). But this one is lovely, probably because it wasn't really meant to be a commercial thing: Tolkien wrote these letters and illustrated them for his own children. This volume is a nice little edition, not just copying the text but including images of them as well.

    It's barely a mouthful, of course, and it's not the most astonishing and original thing Tolkien ever did -- but it has little glimpses of his humour and skill.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)
    Starting in 1920, the Tolkien children received letters from Father Christmas, complete with pictures and funny stories about the North Polar Bear and others in Father Christmas' household. This book collects the letters from 1925 to 1938 and the "final letter" (no date given, but it's sometime during World War 2). Most of them are transcribed, but there are images of two of the letters showing Father Christmas' shaky handwriting, and much of the artwork is also reproduced.This is a really cute collection I enjoyed paging through. I could have read it in one sitting, but I spread it out a bit over two days. The illustrations and stories of Father Christmas and the hapless Polar Bear are often funny. While I probably wouldn't read it from beginning to end for myself, it would make a fun family read-aloud around Christmastime.
  • (5/5)
    When Tolkien's eldest son was 3, he began to write letters from Father Christmas to his children each year. These letters along with their beautiful illustrated are reproduced in this book and although only 48 pages it was a delight to read. I managed to find an old 1976 edition in our local charity bookshop which added to the charm.The letters themselves tell the story of what Father Christmas has got up to over the last year whilst trying to get all the presents out, whether that be fighting off goblins or just dealing with the general incompetence of the poor old North Polar Bear.Definitely one I can see myself picking up as a future Christmas read.
  • (5/5)
    This is a really neat collection of letters written by JRRT to his young children as Santa Claus, or Father Christmas if you are English. They feature the misadventures of the North Polar Bear and a few of his friends, and the problems that they cause Santa, such as crushing all the Christmas chocolates, or climbing up the North Pole to retrieve Santa's hood and having it break off and fall through Santa's dining room roof. Later, they start having problems with invading goblins and the letters take on a more menacing tone, like going from the Hobbit to LOTR. Each of the letters was accompanied by a full color drawing of the adventures described, and the only thing lacking in this collection is completeness. All of the text is there, but I would like to see each in its entirety, because they all still exist and why not include them all? Come on...Also, the LT reviews are worth reading for this book.
  • (4/5)
    Was given this by my mother when 1st published, and I still read it nearly every year. I love it for it's imagination, for it's indication of a father's love for his children, of it's small snippets of history creeping into it's pages.
  • (5/5)
    Every December an envelope bearing a stamp from the North Pole would arrive for J.R.R. Tolkien's children. Inside it would be a letter in a strange spidery handwriting (Father Christmas) and a coloured drawing or some sketches. They told wonderful tales of life at the North Pole.This is a really lovely book. What an imaginative man, and what fun for his children.
  • (3/5)
    Genre: poetry, historical fiction (collection of letters) Review: It is difficult to define the genre of this book, I am not even sure I would use it in a classroom. It is a collection of letters supposedly written from Santa Clause. They are interesting as fictional writing and they are believable. The letters are believable simply because they see like a proof that Santa Clause is real.
  • (4/5)
    This was a wonderful demonstration of how creative a man Tolkien was, and how great a father. I loved reading these letters, and now I'm very tempted to do something similar with any children I may have.
  • (5/5)
    This is a really lovely little book with Professor Tolkien's characteristically magical water color and ink illustrations and his sweet-natured, witty commentaries about life at the North Pole. Meet Father Christmas on his home turf and get to know his friend Great Polar Bear. Through a series of letters that Father Christmas sent to the Tolkien children we are treated to an insider's look at all the magical preparations for Christmas as well as a glimpse of what life is like for Father Christmas during the rest of the year. This book is a fun, hands on treat for the imagination with its realistic envelopes and letters that you can actually remove and read for yourself. These enchanting letters were, of course, delivered by Elf Messenger.