May 30 2008, 3:57pm
no question about that. But the one you're ascribing to him seems pretty weak, if it is one.
Tolkien had his little jokes
Tolkien the university professor, the man who spent his life dealing with college students in their Tweens, was having one of his wry pokes again...
The joke really is that hobbits are so very much like us, and yet they aren't. We can't really tell how old they might have looked to us. Certainly Bergil mistakes Pippin for a boy - and not just because of his height, since he sees him close up. Pippin is 29, a tween in hobbit-years, certainly "quite old" in man-years, as Bergil says. But Pippin apparently doesn't look like a 29-year-old man. We don't really know what adult, or tween, hobbits look like, do we? With their beardless faces maybe they would look quite childlike to us, even when they're of age. That's one of the neat ambiguities you get when you create a race that's just unfamiliar enough to leave the reader guessing.
...and the sails were drawn up, and the wind blew,
and slowly the ship slipped away down the long grey firth;
and the light of the glass of Galadriel that Frodo bore
glimmered and was lost.
(This post was edited by FarFromHome on May 30 2008, 3:58pm)