Considering how much debate there is on this subject in the wider world, it is surprising that in a year, there has been no discussion begun about it. For my part, I take an extremely broad view of the canonicity of the works of Tolkien. If it was penned by Tolkien, and had anything whatsoever to do with Middle Earth, then I view it as part of the canon. This would include his private writings and notes. The fact that something is contradicted by later writings should not, to my mind, affect its canonicity. The contradiction of part of the fun of it all. As I said in my user page, we are not dealing with the Bible here, and I think we can tolerate a bit of contradiction.--N3rus 06:08, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

The question of canonicity always puts me in the deer-in-the-headlights position. There are certain narratives that I prefer, but they are not necessarily the latest to have been written. For example, I much prefer the narrative that Beren died in the arms of Lúthien after she bid him wait for her in the Halls of Mandos over the one in which he died by the waters of Esgalduin far from her. Could there not be two narratives both true in their own way? Could not general lore and tales of the age simply lack the bit of detail that Beren lived until returned to the arms of Lúthien? This is somewhat akin to the allusions by Gandalf at the Council of Elrond that tales of Isildur did not recall that he had tarried in the White City before taking his journey northward.—N3rus 10:03, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree that we can tolerate a bit of contradiction, particularly if sources are given. Legends often differ when they're told, and if Tolkien's works are treated as "translations," one should expect and accept some contradictions. I think N3rus is right in that all of his writings should be considered canon.--Arwen Skywalker 20:10, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

I also agree with you both that all of Tolkiens works based around middle-earthg and arda should be considered canon.-- KingAragorn  talk  contribs  edits  email  21:05, 10 March 2007 (UTC)
Seeing as the consensus is that we should include all of the Tolkien's works about Middle-earth as cannon I have added the {{Rewrite}} template to the page. Razor77 23:58, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

Movies and other works

Now that we have what books are canon decided, it is time to start thinking about what else should be included. I personally feel that limiting the scope of this wiki to just the books is the wrong decision. There are many people out there that have not read the books yet, but have seen the movies or played the games. If they were to come to this wiki, it would be best for them to find information about whatever medium that they first experienced Tolkien. From there they will expand out and learn about what else is out there. I know that I had not read the books before having seen the movies and it is because of the movies that I have come to enjoy and admire the depth of Middle-earth. Do we really want to possibly turn even a single visitor away because they feel off put by our acceptance of only the books as canon? Razor77 23:58, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

I am for including other works on Middle-earth on this wiki, but I do not like the idea of having movie canon and book canon together as it could cause contradiction. However it would be good if each different type of canon is separated and maybe have some of an article devoted to the books and some of the article based around the Movies; separated by level 2 headers etc. Therefore I propose we have different types of canon that are accepted as content, like book canon, movie canon, and games canon, that are each clearly separated within an aticle.-- KingAragorn  talk  contribs  edits  email  15:14, 29 June 2007 (UTC)
I think that books are only canon that is there; but info from movies and games should be added under "portrayal in adaptations" / "adaptations" section, since it is what movies and games technically are. Picard578 18:55, May 6, 2011 (UTC)
This wiki started life based on the Peter Jackson movies. It has no maximum size. It can perfectly well extend to the rest of Tolkien and, as suggested above, other adaptations. "Canon" can be mentioned and differentiated, e.g. in headings as suggested, but there should be no discouragement of Tolkien-related material of whatever sort. It all brings people to the wiki through search engines, etc, and, as has also been suggested above, some of those people may enjoy discovering more "canon" and contributing more. -- Robin Patterson (Talk) 04:32, July 21, 2011 (UTC)
There can ONLY be ONE CANON.....that is the work of J.R.R. Tolkien, either in his own words or that of his son..... no adaptations nor licensed work from Tolkien Enterprises should be labeled as "canon". Feel free to use information and images from the PJ movie (as well as others) all you want on this wiki, it definitely deserves a place in the discussion of Middle Earth, but it is NOT canon. Eärnur 21:31, March 4, 2012 (UTC)
Accepting work (movies or otherwise) as "canon" because it is licensed by Tolkien Enterprises is a big mistake, especially now that the movies are not only deviating from or adding to what Tolkien wrote, but introducing storyline elements that directly conflict with it. Movie material cannot be allowed to be incorporated in-line within the main article. I'm not saying reject it; there is a place for it in the Wikia articles, but it should be placed after the main article in the "Portrayal in Adaptations" section, and the source clearly identified. - Gradivus, 22:19, December 18, 2012 (UTC)
Why not do what the Harry Potter Wiki is doing and accept things from the movies and other non-Tolkein sources as canon so long as they do not contradict the books (for example, the names of the seven other ringwraiths and the exact age of Legolas). 22:40, September 29, 2013 (UTC)
Not saying the movies shouldn't be included, but there's no way there are considered canon by the majority of Tolkien scholars (and there are so many contradictions to the story that you'd barely get 10 minutes of true material from all 3 films...maybe an exaggeration, but not by much).  --Stevehim (talk) 21:50, January 15, 2016 (UTC)
"there is only one canon" that is a bad argment. we cant downplay any form of media no matter if it is the movies or a card game! The skyrimhandle of imperium (talk) 04:04, January 20, 2020 (UTC)
It has less to do with downplaying other forms of media than maintaining the integrity of Tolkien's actual works. If we were to accept all new content as one "canon", not only would it undermine the authority of Tolkien's works, it would create some unreconcilable points in the lore (i.e. the Nazgul dying/being resurrected). --Bitterhand (talk) 14:54, January 20, 2020 (UTC)

Denotation of canonical status

Just wanted to bring up something I've been thinking about for a while, having to do with the canonicity of certain topics or writings by Tolkien. It's my belief that certain works, such as The New Shadow, are of uncertain canonicity (i.e. did this actually happen in Middle-earth?). My main reasoning for this is that he abandoned the story, specifically saying it wasn't worth doing. To the best of my knowledge, Tolkien himself never explicitly addressed the concept of a "canon" pertaining to his writings, but Christopher Tolkien has, saying in effect that there's no way an authoritative canon could ever be definitively formed, even by himself. So to me, the logical next step would be to say that on certain topics, we simply don't know for sure exactly what Tolkien intended.

So with that in mind, I think it would be worth denoting articles that have some question with regard to their canonicity. By no means do I think we have an obligation to copy what Tolkien Gateway does, but I think they have the right idea in this respect, and it is something I think we should consider implementing somehow. (An example of their template can be seen here: [1].) I also think that this theorized category would be different from our existing pre-canon category, since the content there was clearly replaced by Tolkien. Things in the 'disputed canonicity' category would need only include topics and characters whose existence is in a gray area, so to speak.

I know I may be thinking about "canon" in a slightly different way from already been established here, per LOTR:Canon, but I felt it was worth sharing to see others' opinions on the matter. If this does sound agreeable, I'll be happy to make up some template ideas. Please let me know if there are any thoughts or questions! Bitterhand (talk) 19:52, October 30, 2018 (UTC)

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