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The Inklings

Posted in Fictional Stories, Memorials / Obituaries / Epitaphs, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on October 5, 2018 by Drogo

The Inklings (1930-1949)

The Inklings were an informal literary discussion pub group, led by JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis and other friends associated with Oxford University in England. The Inklings valued fantasy narratives in fiction. Lewis loved listening to other authors who were reading, and he memorized their passages easily.

Lewis and Tolkien invited and met fellow writers to talk and listen at pubs. Regular Inkling meetings were on tuesday mornings at the ‘Eagle & Child’ (aka “Bird and Baby”). Meetings were also held in Lewis’s Magdalen rooms, thursday evenings with tea served.

The third main member of the Inklings was Oxford University Press editor Charles Williams. Other Inkling members included Lewis’s brother Warren Lewis, Victor “Hugo” Dyson, Adam Fox, Lord David Cecil, Neville Coghill, Owen Barfield, Robert “Humphrey” Havard, Gervase Mathew, and Commander Dundas-Grant. Associate Inklings that visited were Colin Hardie, Christopher Tolkien (JRR Tolkien’s son), Roger Green, Percy Bates, Ronald McCallum, Charles Wrenn, E.R. Eddison, Roy Campbell, and other friends of regular members. There were no officers, agendas, or minutes taken at meetings. Most of these did not write fiction, but were scholars of non-fiction.

The whimsical group name “Inklings” was borrowed from an Oxford under-graduate literary club circa 1930. Tolkien described his Inkling meetings as “a feast of reason and flow of soul”, which basically meant lively listening and responses. Lewis said “What I owe them all is incalculable.” And to emphasize their enjoyment, he asked, “Is any pleasure on earth as great as a circle of Christian friends by a good fire?” Lewis said that friends made a difference in his life.

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