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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
Me? Plunge?


Nov 13 2012, 12:29pm

Views: 1192
Me? Plunge? [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
The adjective "last" has many synonyms depending on its meaning

Well, IIRC, in A Short Rest Tolkien called it "The Last Homely House West of the Mountains", referring to the edge of the Wild. Here it is the first upon returning from there (note that according to movie-Aragorn, the Wild was east of Bree; but I don't think this has any basis in Tolkien).

I was wondering whether the use of "Last (or First)" was a return to the rather low-key, obvious hobbity humour - or if it was significant in terms of Bilbo's journey. Or perhaps both?

In Reply To
It seems a strange arrangement in perilous times, but yes (I think). Perhaps there was something like a postern gate that no one bothered to mention? It is not so different than the dead end that was Helm's Deep. In both cases confidence ran high that no hostile agents could breach the outer defences.

But from the caves of Helm's Deep there were secret ways that led up to the hills.
And Helm's Deep was a fortress, not the seat of the chief of a people.

In Reply To
Before or after Thorin returned to Erebor? Seriously though I suppose that if he could find the bridge, it would be too late for them anyway.

I was thinking of Esgaroth, and the dragon trying to creep along the bridge. I was wondering how that would work with Rivendell.
Seriously, I can't imagine how Rivendell would be protected except for by many outposts, and/or some superior kind of magic. And according to The Lord of the Rings, Elrond did have the most powerful of the Three - even if its powers are never specified.

In Reply To
Surviving adventures is like that. Perhaps he was still trying to process all that he had been through. Or perhaps he didn't know how to describe what he had been through to people who hadn't been there. Perhaps he matured while he was abroad and did not feel the need to be the centre of attention?

Well, he was always looking for an audience in The Lord of the Rings, so I tend to put it down to Gandalf's taking over the role of the talker, as was his wont.
But once we see the two books as separate entities, and consider just The Hobbit, with its end of Bilbo being happy in his seclusion - your reasoning makes a lot of sense.

In Reply To

It has an air of profundity without being over-wrought.

Well put. Thank you!

In Reply To

I wonder if the ponies voiced their displeasure?

Have you followed the Mark Reads series of The Hobbit? Chapter after chapter, Mark was expecting the ponies to talk, and being disappointed. Cool

In Reply To
Have you ever spoken with someone who is on the edge of sleep, only to discover they don't remember a word you said?

I am married to someone who is prone to this... Blush
And in my very limited experience with teaching, I have often felt so. Occasionally, I was pleasantly surprised by people actually remembering what I've said; but once you stand in front of the class and begin lecturing, you always notice those who are nodding.

"As all things come to an end, even this story..."

Here we read of Bilbo, who is “quiet and drowsy”, that “every now and again he would open one eye” and listen to Gandalf’s tale. Is Tolkien deliberately echoing this passage in LOTR when he writes, “At that Bilbo opened an eye, almost as if he had heard … ‘You see, I am getting so sleepy’, he said.”?
- N.E. Brigand

The weekly discussion of The Hobbit is back. Join us in the Reading Room for The Return Journey!

Subject User Time
The Last Stage, part I - "And elves are still singing" sador Send a private message to sador Nov 12 2012, 12:55pm
    Is this the last chapter SirDennisC Send a private message to SirDennisC Nov 13 2012, 4:13am
        Me? Plunge? sador Send a private message to sador Nov 13 2012, 12:29pm
            "Last (or First)" SirDennisC Send a private message to SirDennisC Nov 13 2012, 3:57pm
                directional? telain Send a private message to telain Nov 19 2012, 4:00pm
                    "Last Decent House" sador Send a private message to sador Nov 20 2012, 7:41pm
                        yes! telain Send a private message to telain Nov 21 2012, 5:07pm
    Just one thought... FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Nov 18 2012, 4:40pm
        An "elvish dream"? sador Send a private message to sador Nov 19 2012, 9:06am
    Elves. Hmph. CuriousG Send a private message to CuriousG Nov 19 2012, 10:44pm
        I saw two shooting stars last night / I wished on them but they were only satellites sador Send a private message to sador Nov 20 2012, 8:17pm


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