Court orders that Tolkein rings be destroyed
12 August 2016
An Australian court has ruled that a jeweller illegally created and sold a collection of rings in the style of Lord of the Rings.
The Tolkein Estate Ltd claimed that jeweller Alexander Saltalamacchia had breached their copyright by selling a ring with inscription text from the Lord of the Rings novels, and also marketed the rings by reference to the books and the protagonist Bilbo Baggins.
Saltalamacchia had included verse on the ring, which when translated from Elvish reads "One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them. One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
". He created (or possibly forged in the fires of Mount Doom) over 1300 rings which he flogged on the internet over a period of eight years.
||"It came to me, it's mine, my precious, my copyright"
Lawyers for the Tolkein Estate had sent two letters of demand to Saltamacchia asking him to desist from selling the rings, which the Dark Lord ignored.
The court ruled that Saltamacchia "ought reasonably to have known
" that the One Ring engraving was protected by copyright, and ordered that the rings be destroyed/cast into the fires of Mordor from whence they came.