Via The Guardian:
John Garth, author of Tolkien and the Great War, said the epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf had “a deep and detailed impact on what Tolkien wrote – from his earliest poem of Middle-earth, written in September 1914, right through The Hobbit with the theft of a cup from a dragon hoard, and The Lord of the Rings with the arrival at the halls of Rohan”.
The author also, said Garth, changed attitudes to Beowulf “completely in a 1936 talk which rescued this marvellous poem from being treated as a mere quarry for historical enquiry”.
Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary, edited by Tolkien’s son Christopher Tolkien, will be published by HarperCollins on May 22. And there was much rejoicing!