The Inklings was a literary discussion group associated with the University of Oxford. Among its members were J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Owen Barfield, Charles Williams and Dorothy L. Sayers. It met between the 1930s and 1950s.
Readings and discussions of the members' unfinished works was common in the group. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, Lewis's Out of the Silent Planet, and Williams's All Hallows Eve were among the novels first read to the Inklings.
Inklings readings and discussions were usually held on Thursday evenings in C. S. Lewis's college rooms at Magdalen College. The Inklings were also known to gather at a local pub, The Eagle and Child, known to them as The Bird and Baby. Contrary to common belief, they did not read their manuscripts in the pub.
The Inklings: C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams and Their Friends. Humphrey Carpenter (1979), ISBN 0395276284
http://www.mythsoc.org/inklings.html -- An Inklings biography from The Mythopoeic Society