Sep 22 2019, 4:15am
Today, September 22, is Bilbo and Frodo’s birthday. Of course, they liked to celebrate it at home and usually did so, in the company of their friends, at the magnificent hobbit hole known as Bag End.
** Party Game - A Homey Quiz
Home is an important theme in Tolkien’s fantasies: There and Back Again, ‘hearth and hall’, “Well, I’m back,” and the like. Thus many others besides our favorite hobbits have homes as well, some great and some humble - or terrible. For this ‘Homey Quiz’, can you identify the characters whose homes are described in the following ten passages from Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings? For extra credit, can you name the book and chapter in which each description appears?
1. …a tube-shaped hall like a tunnel: a very comfortable tunnel without smoke, with panelled walls, and floors tiled and carpeted, provided with polished chairs, and lots and lots of pegs for hats and coats … many little round doors opened out of it, first on one side and then on another. The best rooms were all on the left-hand side (going in), for these were the only ones to have windows, deep-set round windows looking over his garden and meadows beyond, sloping down to the river.
2. The hall was long and wide and filled with shadows and half lights; mighty pillars upheld its lofty roof. But here and there bright sunbeams fell in glimmering shafts from the eastern windows, high under the deep eaves. … the floor was paved with stones of many hues; branching runes and strange devices intertwined beneath their feet. … the pillars were richly carved, gleaming dully with gold and half-seen colours.
3. A wide and echoing passage led back from the door towards the mountain-side. It was dimly lit with torches flaring in brackets on the walls, but its distant end was lost in gloom. Many doors and openings could be seen on this side and that; but it was empty…
4. …a fair room, light and airy, with goodly hangings of dull gold sheen unfigured. It was sparely furnished, having but a small table, two chairs and a bench; but at either side there were curtained alcoves and well-clad beds within with vessels and basins for washing. There were three high narrow windows that looked northward…
5. They were in a long low room, filled with the light of lamps swinging from the beams of the roof; and on the table of dark polished wood stood many candles, tall and yellow, burning brightly.
6. There were bones on the floor and a nasty smell was in the air; but there was a good deal of food jumbled carelessly on shelves and on the ground, among an untidy litter of plunder, of all sorts from brass buttons to pots full of gold coins standing in a corner. There were lots of clothes, too, hanging on the walls…
7. In [the hall] were no tables, but a bright fire was burning in a great hearth between the carven pillars upon either side…. except on high days it usually stands empty and quiet, and people come here who wish for peace, and thought.
8. …a great hall. It was lit by deep windows in the wide aisles at either side, beyond the rows of tall pillars that upheld the roof. Monoliths of black marble, they rose to great capitals carved in many strange figures of beasts and leaves; and far above in shadow the wide vaulting gleamed with dull gold, inset with flowing traceries of many colours. No hangings nor storied webs, nor any things of woven stuff or of wood, were to be seen in that long solemn hall.
9. The fires in the middle of the hall were built with fresh logs and the torches were put out, and still they sat in the light of the dancing flames with the pillars of the house standing tall behind them, and dark at the top like trees of the forest.
10. …a generous supper was laid on the large table. The kitchen was lit with candles and the fire was mended. … In a short while fourteen sat down to eat. There was beer in plenty, and … much other solid farmhouse fare. The dogs lay by the fire and gnawed rinds and cracked bones.
Oh no no -- go back and give it a try before looking here!
1. Mr. Bilbo Baggins. The Hobbit 1, ‘An Unexpected Party’
2. Theoden and the house of Eorl. Lord of the Rings III.6, ‘The King of the Golden Hall’
3. Shagrat and the garrison of Cirith Ungol. Lord of the Rings VI.1, ‘The Tower of Cirith Ungol’
4. Gandalf and Pippin as guests of Denethor. Lord of the Rings V.1, ‘Minas Tirith’
5. Tom Bombadil and Goldberry. Lord of the Rings I.7, ‘In the House of Tom Bombadil’
6. Tom, Bert, and William. The Hobbit 2, ‘Roast Mutton’
7. Elrond and the folk of Rivendell. Lord of the Rings II.1, ‘Many Meetings’
8. Denethor as Steward of the King. Lord of the Rings V.1, ‘Minas Tirith’
9. Beorn. The Hobbit 7, ‘Queer Lodgings’
10. Farmer Maggot. The Lord of the Rings I.4, ‘A Shortcut to Mushrooms’
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