From "Tolkien: A Cultural Phenomenon" (2003) by Brian Rosebury
This text is reproduced exclusively for the purposes of discussion on The One Ring.net.
23] the words
chosen, however remote they may be from colloquial speech or ephemeral
suggestions, must be words that remain in
literary use ... among educated people .... They must need no gloss. The fact that a word was still used by Chaucer, or Shakespeare, or even
later, gives it no claim, if it has in our time perished from literary use .... Antiquarian sentiment and philological knowingness are wholly out
Translating Beowulf’, The Monsters and the Critics, ed. C.
Tolkien (Allen & Unwin, 1983) pp. 55-6. Quotations from this volume
permission of HarperCollins Publishers Ltd © J. R. R. Tolkien, 1983.