J. R. R. Tolkien, Allen Drury, and Johannes Bobrowski are the acclaimed authors who were born or died on a day like this.
J. R. R. Tolkien John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was an was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor. He is best known as the author of the classic high fantasy works "The Hobbit", "The Lord of the Rings", and "The Silmarillion". Tolkien was Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Pembroke College, Oxford, from 1925 to 1945 and Merton Professor of English Language and Literature there from 1945 to 1959. He was a close friend of C. S. Lewis—they were both members of the informal literary discussion group known as the Inklings. Tolkien was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II on 28 March 1972. After his death, Tolkien's son Christopher published a series of works based on his father's extensive notes and unpublished manuscripts, including "The Silmarillion". These, together with "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" form a connected body of tales, poems, fictional histories, invented languages, and literary essays about a fantasy world called Arda, and Middle-earth within it. Between 1951 and 1955, Tolkien applied the term legendarium to the larger part of these writings. While many other authors had published works of fantasy before Tolkien, the great success of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings led directly to a popular resurgence of the genre. This has caused Tolkien to be popularly identified as the "father" of modern fantasy literature—or, more precisely, of high fantasy. In 2008, The Times ranked him sixth on a list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". Forbes ranked him the 5th top-earning dead celebrity in 2009. Tolkien died on a day like this in 1973, at the age of 81.
Allen Drury Allen Stuart Drury was a U.S. novelist. He was born on a day like this in 1918 and passed away on the same day 80 years later. Drury greatest success was "Advise and Consent", which was made into a film in 1962 and earned him the 1960 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. The book was partly inspired by the suicide of Wyoming Senator Lester C. Hunt. It spent 102 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list. Drury followed "Advise and Consent" with several sequels. "A Shade of Difference" is set a year after "Advise and Consent". Drury then turned his attention to the next presidential election after those events with "Capable of Honor" and "Preserve and Protect". He then wrote two alternative sequels based on a different outcome of an assassination attack in an earlier work: "Come Nineveh", "Come Tyre" and "The Promise of Joy". In 1971, Drury published "The Throne of Saturn", a science fiction novel about the first attempt at sending a manned mission to Mars. Having wrapped up his political series by 1975, Drury began a new one with the 1977 novel "Anna Hastings", more a novel about journalism than politics. He returned to the timeline in 1979, with the political novel "Mark Coffin U.S.S".
Johannes Bobrowski Johannes Bobrowski was a German lyrical poet, narrative writer, adaptor and essayist. He was born in East Prussia in 1917. In 1937, he started a degree in art history in Berlin. As a member of the Confessing Church, Bobrowski had contact with the German resistance against National Socialism. He was a lance corporal for the entire Second World War in Poland, France and the Soviet Union. From 1945—1949 Bobrowski was imprisoned by the Soviet Union, where he spent time working in a coal mine. On his release, he worked as an editor in Berlin, first for the Altberliner Verlag, a children’s publisher run by Lucie Grosner, and then from 1959 for the Union Verlag publishing house. His work was influenced by his knowledge of Eastern European landscapes and of the German, Baltic and Slavic cultures and languages, combined with ancient myths. In 1964, Bobrowski became a member of the PEN Club. "Shadowland", "Weathersigns", "The Admonisher", and "In the Windy Wilderness" are some of his works. Bebrowski passed away on a day like this in 1965.