John i Edith
- I would rather share one life with you than face all the ages of this world. –
After the loss of both parents, John and Hilary Tolkien lived with their aunt Beatrice, and were cared for by the priest Francis. When he saw that the boys were not entirely happy in their home, he moved them to Mrs. Faulkner's. Fifteen-year-old John and thirteen-year-old Hillary moved into the apartment where the Faulkners lived with their daughter, a maid, and eighteen-year-old orphan Edith Bratt.
Although John was not interested in Edith's piano playing and she was not interested in his interest in extinct languages, John and Edith got along great. Together they stole food from the kitchen and then secretly organized secret dinners in Edith's room. Their joint trip to a nearby tea house was also an interesting pastime.
Guests sat there on a high terrace with wooden chairs and tables. Beneath the teahouse was a promenade where, on Sunday afternoons, people would often walk. The most fun part of hanging out for John and Edith would be throwing sugar at passers-by. Namely, they took turns, sitting on the terrace, trying to insert sugar cubes into the hats of unfortunate walkers who passed under the terrace. But those tea parties cost John and Edith their friendship.
Noticing how John often hangs out with an unknown girl, the owner of the teahouse informed the priest Francis about it. The conservative Francis became very angry because Francis was secretly seeing a girl from the same house. He threatened John, and the latter promised him that their friendship would end. Edith had to move out. But John did not fulfill his promise.
He continued to secretly see Edith. They escaped separately by train to the countryside to meet there. For his 21st birthday, he bought Edith a wristwatch as proof of his love, and she gave him a fountain pen. The priest found out about the secret meetings again and decided to end them once and for all. He threatened John that he would not finance his going to college. Namely, at that time John was actively preparing to apply to Oxford. John didn't care then.
He told Edith that they must not meet again. The last time he saw her was when she passed by his window on a bicycle. He couldn't wait to come of age. Then he would no longer depend on Father Francis' money and would be able to see Edith again. The days passed slowly. To make matters worse, John didn't even manage to get into Oxford!
He began studying at King Edward. He played more rugby there than studied. Thanks to rugby, he broke his nose, and on another occasion he cut his tongue. After three long years of waiting, John's 21st birthday arrived. He didn't wait a day. He sent a letter to Edith asking her if she would marry him. The answer he didn't expect came.
Edith wrote to him that she had been waiting for him for three long years and that she already thought he had forgotten about her! She became engaged to a young man, George Field. But John did not easily admit defeat. As if in a romantic movie, he immediately took the train to Cheltenham to see Edith live. After he arrived, they talked all day. Edith then agreed to break off the engagement and marry John. He immediately informed the priest Francis who reluctantly gave them his blessing.
Edith converted to Roman Catholicism because of John and waited for him to finish his studies at Oxford, which he had just started. She lived a monotonous life and would often get angry when she received letters from an elated John who was enjoying his student days. Just as they were about to get married and move in together, World War I broke out. John is mobilized.
Edith was terrified of John. She decided to marry him immediately. In one of his letters, Tolkien expressed admiration for his wife's willingness to marry someone with no job, no money, and no significant prospects in life, except that he would be killed in the "Great War".
But luckily that didn't happen. John contracted trench fever, which is why he was sent back to England. John and Edith had a long and successful marriage. They had as many as four children, of whom Christian is the most famous because he completed many of his father's works. Tolkien loved to tell his children bedtime stories, and it was his children who inspired him to write down some of the stories. This is how the most famous sagas in the recent history of literature "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" were born. Edith and John are buried in the same tomb with the names Lúthien and Beren. These are characters from one of the earliest stories about Middle-earth, about the adventures of the mortal man Beren and the immortal elf Lúthien, who were linked by eternal love, just like Edith and John.