John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Jan 3, 1892 - Sep 2, 1973(81)

The funny professor

Where did the professor go?

John R.R. Tolkien, in addition to being the author of one of the most popular fantasy sagas, was also a professor at Oxford. He taught there from 1925 to 1959. Students remember how interesting his lectures were, even though he was not a special lecturer. When he lectured, he usually faced the blackboard, and the combination of facing away from the audience and his babbling, the result of cutting his tongue during a rugby match, made following his lectures a mission impossible. Although he was not the most successful lecturer, he was an extremely interesting person. Because of this, students remember many unusual situations he would put them in.

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Before the start of the first lecture to a class of freshmen, he secretly sat down in the audience. He sat there quietly for the first fifteen minutes of the lecture. When twenty minutes had already passed, the students began to wonder why the professor was so late? They remained in their places, and Tolkien with them. After thirty minutes, the students started to protest. And Tolkien began to protest with them. He shouted: - What kind of professor is he who has been gone for so long?!? Shame on him! - When some students already started to leave the classroom, Tolkien stood up and declared: - When the professor is gone, I will try to teach! – He went to the lectern and started reciting Beowulf perfectly in Old English. *Beowulf is a heroic epic with more than three thousand lines.

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