J.R.R. Tolkien was born 3 January 1892 in Bloemfontein, Orange Free State, South Africa! At age three he went to England with his mother and brother on what was intended to be a lengthy family visit. His father, back in South Africa however, died of rheumatic fever before he could join them. This left the family without an income, so his mother took him to live with her parents in King’s Heath, Birmingham.

An English writer, poet, philologist and university professor, he was best known as the author of classic high fantasy works, The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.

On the strength of his birthright alone, Tolkien would have qualified for South African citizenship, passport and residency if he so wanted. Just imagine…

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