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Latin Hobbit for Harper

An edition of J R R Tolkien's The Hobbit translated into Latin and titled Hobbitus Ille, will be published in September by HarperCollins to mark its 75th birthday.

The publisher said the Latin version of the tale‚ which opens "In foramine terrae habitabat hobbitus" (In a hole in the ground, there lived a hobbit)‚ would be "great for students learning Latin, but also for fans who want to dip in and find favourite passages".

The translation, by classicist Mark Walker, will also see Tolkien's songs and verses translated into classical Latin metre. Previous Latin editions include Domus Anguli Puensis (The House at Pooh Corner) and Ursus Nomine Paddington (A Bear Called Paddington).

HC will publish in hardback priced £12.99