I included as many editions as I could find, but there are several that I haven’t been able to get my hands on yet. For a full list of the editions I have, and the page numbers of each section, see the following table:
This edition list includes the sections used in the standard (seven-book) ordering, as well as the obsolete six-book ordering (created before The Children of Húrin was published), and the Expanded Version (thirteen books in all). It also lists the sections which I are not included in these reading sequences.
When calculating page numbers, it isn’t possible to simply scale the pages from one book to another – this will get you fairly close to the new page number, but won’t hit it exactly. So I had to examine each edition included in the Chronological Tolkien system.
The following table shows the whole reading sequence in chronological order:
Here is the same table for the thirteen-book Expanded Version:
Chronological Table (Expanded Version)
And here is the table for the old six-book lineup:
Chronological Table (6-book version)
Notice that the six-book lineup actually had a larger number of sections, because The Children of Húrin duplicated the work I had already done in combining the stories of Húrin’s family from The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales into a single narrative. For details, see this section of the FAQ.
Similarly, the Expanded Version allowed me to drop two small sections in The Silmarillion because these had been replaced with more elaborate versions of the same stories in The War of the Jewels. For information on the Expanded Version, see this section of the FAQ.
The chronological tables also indicate the dates or date ranges for each section. In a few cases these date ranges overlap. This is because it was crucial that the Chronological Tolkien order be readable – and readability had to take precedence over strict chronological ordering.
Chronological Tolkien . . . . . Gory Details
Updated 20 October 2020 by Larry King
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