Did J.R.R. Tolkien Use Cannabis?

J.R.R. Tolkien is an English writer, scholar, and philologist most known for writing the classic fantasy novels “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings”. Before he became the author he’s remembered as today, Tolkien studied linguistics at Exeter College, Oxford, where he earned his degree in 1915. The following year, Tolkien fought in World War I, which many believe inspired the darker sides of his novels. When he returned, he worked as an assistant to the Oxford English Dictionary, which is when he also earned his Master of Arts. Tolkien then went on to teach for over 20 years as a professor of English Language and Literature. During this time, Tolkien also wrote, with his first scholarly publication in 1925, which was an edition of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. He also began writing books about Chaucer and Beowulf, but nothing compares to “The Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit”. “The Lord of the Rings” was published in 1954, but it took Tolkien over a 14 year period to write, and he originally wrote “The Hobbit” as a bedtime story for his children.

In his popular books, many of Tolkien’s characters frequently smoke pipe-weed, which many fans and experts argue whether it’s actually marijuana. Tolkien’s values and devotion to his religion didn’t indicate that his characters were smoking marijuana though, because he was known as a Roman Catholic who preferred established conventions over modernization. He was also supposedly a devotee of the “art” of smoking pipe-weed, as he was seen smoking from a pipe often. Most argue that these pipes weren’t packed with marijuana, because even though his books were loved in the 60s by the “hippies”, he disliked this fan base.  

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