The Road Goes On: Exploring Tolkien's Influence Through Catholic University's Special Collections and Rare Books

"The Road goes ever on and on,
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say"


J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, "A Long-expected Party"


The inspiration for this exhibit comes from the iteration of Bilbo’s famous walking song, featured above. One would be hard pressed to find a contemporary fantasy novel today which has not been heavily influenced by Tolkien, and his work has inspired a great deal of academic research as well. In this exhibit, you will find not just people who have been inspired by Tolkien’s work, but things that influenced Tolkien himself, and helped him shape Middle-earth as we know it today. When it comes to the field of Tolkien studies, the road truly does go ever on and on. May scholars and enthusiasts everywhere continue to walk it for many more years.


Alex Audziayuk, Hannah Kaufman