See a violent and awesome Czech re-enactment of Lord of the Rings

"What I did on my summer vacation: First I painted myself to look like an Uruk-hai. Then I strapped myself into some armor. And then I killed some humans and ate their livers." Well, no so much the last part.

But for a few hundred people in Dosky, Czech Republic, their annual re-enactment of Lord of the Rings is great break from the real world.

At first glance, it seems as if their battle is a smaller version of the Society for Creative Anachronism, a medieval history re-creation group that stages wars, sometimes with as many as 3,000 people participating in combat.

But actually there's a little more to their combat than that: Even though Lord of the Rings is a best-seller now, back when the former Czechoslovakia was a communist country, J.R.R. Tolkien's series was one of the most popular samizdat—that is, banned or forbidden material that was passed to other readers in secret. Anyone caught with samizdat risked years of imprisonment ... even death.

While some people take up activities "because they're there," these people re-enact Tolkien ... because they can.

Check out (or is it Czech out?) the fun they're having in the galliery below.

(via The Washington Post)

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