J.R.R. Tolkien (1892–1973) was an English writer and philologist best known for his high fantasy works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. He was a major scholar of the English language, specialising in Old and Middle English, twice Professor of Anglo-Saxon (Old English) at the University of Oxford, as well as a Fellow of Pembroke College from 1925-1945. His stories are set in a pre-historic era in an invented version called Middle-earth.