The third volume that contains the early myths and legends which led to the writing of Tolkien's epic tale of war, The Silmarillion. This, the third volume of The History of Middle-earth, gives us a priviledged insight into the creation of the mythology of Middle-earth, through the alliterative verse tales of two of the most crucial stories in Tolkien's world -- those of Turien and Luthien.
The first of the poems is the unpublished Lay of The Children of Hurin, narrating on a grand scale the tragedy of Turin Turambar.
The second is the moving Lay of Leithian, the chief source of the tale of Beren and Luthien in The Silmarillion, telling of the Quest of the Silmaril and the encounter with Morgoth in his subterranean fortress. Accompanying the poems are commentaries on the evolution of the history of the Elder Days.
Also included is the notable criticism of The Lay of The Leithian by CS Lewis, who read the poem in 1929.