Spotlight on History: The World of the "Silmarillion"


Course Length: Six weeks

2024 Schedule: Tuesdays with Ms. Mason at 9am CST/3 pm UK 

About Summer Courses at Dreaming Spires

Our summer classes are great for homeschoolers who are preparing for high school in the US or exams in the UK, a chance to sample a subject before doing a deep dive for the coming year.

All courses will meet an hour weekly for six weeks. There will be the usual reliance on living books and some homework to ensure good participation, and at the end a certificate will be awarded.

About Spotlight on History: The World of the "Silmarillion"

If you have enjoyed reading ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’ and want to explore the earlier history of Middle-earth in more depth, then join us on an exciting journey as we explore ‘The Silmarillion’, Tolkien’s epic history of the First, Second and early Third Ages of his Legendarium. We’ll unpack the different parts of the Silmarillion, such as the History of Valinor, the four Great Tales of Beleriand, the tragedy of Numenor, the deeds of Morgoth, Tolkien’s original Dark Lord and the early life of Sauron. We’ll also meet some of the amazing heroes and monsters of the First Age, such as Turin and Tuor, Glaurung and Ancalagon, as well as discovering the origins of some of Tolkien’s key treasures, such as the Silmarils, Earendil’s star, the Palantiri, and, of course, the Rings of Power! We will discover the early lives of key characters such as Galadriel, Elrond and Elendil and look at Tolkien’s maps of Beleriand and the Blessed Realm to understand how Tolkien’s early world geography was constructed.

And, of course, we’ll be looking into the history, literature, cultures and life experiences that J.R.R Tolkien drew upon to create his early Legendarium. We’ll be reading from ‘The Silmarillion’ and also other works such as ‘Unfinished Tales’ and ‘The Book of Lost Tales’ to understand the process that Tolkien went through to write his wider history of Middle-earth as well as a wide range of videos and documentaries about the early Ages of Middle-earth.

For those that love Middle-earth, but have found ‘The Silmarillion’ a challenge, this short course will be invaluable in helping you to understand Tolkien’s own most beloved work.

Come and join the adventure!

Who Teaches Spotlight on History: The World of the Silmarillion?

Yvonne Mason  took her undergraduate degree in English
Language and Literature, then an MA in Medieval Studies from
Royal Holloway in London while working as a costumed historical
interpreter at the Tower of London. She has been working as an
online tutor since 2001 in both English and History and is well
known to the UK Home Education community. Together with her
husband, Yvonne home educated her daughter for ten years, and
now works to support and teach home educated students. Yvonne
is a card carrying member of the Tolkien Society, and a committed
Tolkien nerd, as well as being an avid embroiderer, singer and
movie watcher in her spare time.

See all courses taught by Yvonne