The Tolkien Road

A podcast about Middle-earth and all things Tolkien.

0252 – The Birds of Middle-earth: An Interview with Jonathan Rice

Birds play a massive, iconic role in the legendarium of Middle-earth. From the great Eagles that always seem to appear at the most eucatastrophic moments to the tiny Thrush that proves the downfall of Smaug, Tolkien’s love for birds seems to rise to the level of his love for languages and trees!

A few months ago, long-time listener, patron, and ornithologist Jonathan Rice sent us a lengthy email about swans, crows, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion. It was so interesting that we decided to have Jonathan join us and discuss the role of birds in Middle-earth as well as the accuracy of Tolkien’s depictions of birds. This is a fascinating interview, so do yourself a favor and join us!



  • Andrew T
  • John R
  • Ms. Anonymous



Special thanks to the following patrons: 

  • Andrew T
  • John R
  • Ms. Anonymous
  • Kaitlyn of Tea with Tolkien
  • Shannon S
  • Brian O
  • Emilio P
  • Zeke F
  • James A
  • James L
  • Chris L
  • Chuck F
  • Asya V
  • Ish of the Hammer
  • Teresa C
  • David of Pints with Jack
  • Jonathan D
  • Eric S
  • Joey S
  • Eric B
  • Johanna T
  • Mike M
  • Robert H
  • Paul D
  • Julia
  • Werty


The Mythic Mind with Andrew Snyder » The Tolkien Road Episode 322

0322 » The Mythic Mind with Andrew Snyder

In episode 322, I’m joined by Andrew Snyder of The Mythic Mind podcast. We talk Middle-earth, Tolkien, Christianity, Kierkegaard, The Shadow, and the consolation that Tolkien provided in Andrew’s life during a very dark period. Join us!

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It will help you…

  • Grasp the book’s complex structure.
  • Become familiar with key plot points.
  • Visualize the changing world with simple maps.
  • Deepen your appreciation of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.