Saturday, December 14, 2013

The climate of Tolkien's Shire resembles that of Leicestershire

There was some press coverage earlier this week for an academic paper from climate scientists from the University of Bristol who had used computer modelling to see what the climate of Tolkien's Middle Earth would have been like.

The university website has a press release on the research and also links to the full paper. There you will read:
The main findings concerning Middle Earth are that:
  • The climate of Middle Earth has a similar distribution to that of Western Europe and North Africa.
  • Mordor has an inhospitable climate, even ignoring the effects of Sauron - hot and dry with little vegetation. 
  • Ships sailing for the Undying Lands in the West set off from the Grey Havens due to the prevailing winds in that region. 
  • Much of Middle Earth would have been covered in dense forest if the landscape had not been altered by dragons, orcs, wizards etc
  • Lincolnshire or Leicestershire in the UK, or near Dunedin in the South Island of New Zealand, have an annual-average climate very similar to that of The Shire. 
  • Los Angeles and western Texas in the USA, and Alice Springs in Australia, have an annual-average climate very similar to that of Mordor
The message is clear: come to Leicestershire for your elf's sake.


Tim (Kalyr) said...

I always thought The Shire was based on rural Warwickshire.

Mordor was based on the industrial West Midlands, which is why Peter Jackson should have given the orcs Brummie accents.

wolfi said...

Totally OT but really funnyimho:
Were James Bond’s drinks shaken because of alcohol induced tremor?"
Greetings from your (lone ? faithful reader in Germany/Hungary!o

Simon Titley said...

"Come to Leicestershire?" Or to Lincolnshire, surely?

Jonathan Calder said...

As long as you've got your elf.