Robert Foster has become well-known through his guide as one of the foremost authorities on the world of J.R.R. Tolkien. He was an Assistant Professor of English at Rutgers College, New Jersey. Born in Brooklyn, New York, he received his MA and PhD in English and Medieval Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. He was a consultant to the Tolkien Society of America and his Guide to Middle-earth, published in 1971, resulted from his work of tracing the etymology of names used in JRR Tolkien’s books.