Marquette University adds to Tolkien collection

Marquette University is adding to its J.R.R. Tolkien Collection.

The university says it has acquired a first edition, first printing of The Hobbit. The book is one of 1,500 such copies published in 1937. The Hobbit is recognized as a classic in children’s literature. The first printing sold out before the end of 1937 and includes artwork drawn by Tolkien himself. No purchase price was disclosed.

Marquette’s Tolkien collection includes the original manuscripts of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

The university’s library director in the 1950s recognized The Lord of the Rings as a masterpiece soon after it was published and reached an agreement with Tolkien to obtain the manuscripts for less than $5,000.

The Hobbit manuscripts at Marquette contain nearly 1,600 pages.