C.S. Lewis, Númenórean


  • David Bratman


An exploration of the background and employment of references to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Númenor in C.S. Lewis’s That Hideous Strength. Lewis and Tolkien had agreed to write “spiritual thrillers” discovering myth through space and time. But while Lewis completed and published Out of the Silent Planet and went on to write two sequels, Tolkien abandoned The Lost Road and worked on The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings in their place. In an effort to persuade Tolkien to return to The Lost Road, Lewis inserted references to it in both Out of the Silent Planet and That Hideous Strength. Bratman explores how Lewis, working from memory of hearing Tolkien’s story read aloud, employed Numinor, as he spelled it, as a hermetic Atlantean myth in his novel, and lastly considers Tolkien’s mixed reaction to having his unpublished myth used publicly in this manner.

Author Biography

David Bratman

David Bratman is co-editor of Tolkien Studies: An Annual Scholarly Review, for which he has written and now edits “The Year’s Work in Tolkien Studies.” He is also former editor of Mythprint, bulletin of the Mythopoeic Society. His publications include articles and reviews concerning J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Ursula K. Le Guin, Mervyn Peake, Neil Gaiman, and other authors. He has edited The Masques of Amen House by Charles Williams (Mythopoeic Press, 2000), and is preparing a collection of scholarly essays, Gifted Amateurs, for publication by the Mythopoeic Press. David holds an M. Libr. from the University of Washington, and has worked as a catalog librarian at Stanford University and elsewhere.