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Synopsis of Tolkien's The Hobbit

Detailed synopsis of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit

The Hobbit (There And Back Again), Revised Edition, J.R.R. Tolkien, New York, 1937, 1982,
Ballantine Books.

The story of Bilbo Baggins, a well-to-do hobbit. Hobbits are a human-like creature, about 3 feet tall, of stocky build, that usually walked without shoes on hairy feet. Hobbits traditionally lived in holes tunneled in the side of a hill. They liked round windows and round doors and their wealth was measured by the number of rooms and windows they had in their homes. Bilbo's home was called Bag-End, in the village of Hobbiton, in the area called the Shire. The Shire was located in the Western Lands. He lived alone but often had and enjoyed company and loved entertaining.

When he was 51, an old friend of his parents, Gandalf the Gray, a wizard, came to visit him. Bilbo did not dislike Gandalf, and he did thoroughly enjoy the fireworks display he put on years back, but Gandalf disturbed Bilbo's routine and this disturbed any respectable hobbit. In order to get rid of him, Bilbo suggested he come back the next day for tea. The wizard agreed and the next day, a pounding on his door brought 13 dwarves, several at a time and finally the wizard himself. This started the comfortable hobbit on his very uncomfortable but exciting adventure.

The Dwarves' quest was to regain the land of their ancestors, a far-off mountain home called the Lonely Mountain. Dwarves traditionally worked in mining and metal crafts. The Lonely Mountain was burrowed through with tunnels and laden with treasure, both theirs and that plundered by the current resident (of many years), the dragon Smaug. Thorin, their leader, was the grandson of the King Under The Mountain. Balin, another of the dwarves, became Bilbo's special friend.

Bilbo left his home in April and didn't return until June 22 of the next year, much longer than he expected. His part of the mission was that of "thief." Hobbits can walk very quietly and their night vision is excellent.

Along their journey through the Wild they encountered

? Lester L. Noll


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