The literary works of J. R. R. Tolkien, especially
The Lord of the Rings, are marked by their author’s professional interest in the history of English. This study shows how philological features such as nomenclature, archaism and echoes of Old English poetic forms have been reflected in a selection of published translations into Germanic and Romance languages. It demonstrates how current translation theory based on a hermeneutic approach can explain translators’ compensation techniques such as the use of analogous historical resources in the target languages, and how these can preserve literary and poetic effects. In doing so, it also offers a survey of characteristic stylistic features in the source text.