The revolver that J.R.R. Tolkien kept by his side in the trenches of the First World War will go on display to the public for the first time, later this month.
The Webley MK VI revolver was issued to Tolkien on joining the 11th Battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers in June 1916. Tolkien, a 2nd Lieutenant, was in the trenches in the summer and autumn of 1916 before contracting trench fever and being sent to hospital in England.
The revolver will go on display at the Imperial War Museum North’s Main Exhibition Space in Manchester. Graham Boxer, director of IWM North, told the DailyMail, “‘This December, just as the latest The Hobbit film launches in cinemas, visitors to IWM North will be able to see this weapon and connect further with Tolkien’s magical stories which were born from harrowing wartime experiences.
‘Exhibiting this object is for us the start of what will be an extremely busy time as we prepare to launch our major First World War Centenary exhibition.’
You can find out more about the exhibitions at the IWM North here.