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**Hobbit Discussion – Inside Information** Part 1 – Bilbo earns his reward

grammaboodawg
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Jun 8 2009, 1:59pm


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**Hobbit Discussion – Inside Information** Part 1 – Bilbo earns his reward Can't Post

Whoa... I haven't done one of these in Quite a While! This is one of my favourite chapters of The Hobbit, so I'm geeked and intimidated all at the same time... but here goes :)

Each day this week, I'll be following the chapter as written, slightly diverting at times to look at thematic situations. I have included some of the text I'll be discussing for reference purposes.

Mr. Baggins shows amazing courage as he gathers "Inside Information" of what the Company's facing behind the hidden door when he enters the captured realm of Erebor and knowingly goes into the dragon's den alone.

But let's start at the beginning. We find Bilbo enduring Thorin as he pontificates and flexes his oratory muscles... again. Bilbo knows by now that Thorin is leading up to something. In this case, announcing that Bilbo should earn his pay:

... ""Now is the time for our esteemed Mr. Baggins, who has proved himself a good companion on our long road, and a hobbit full of courage and resource far exceeding his size, and if I may say so possessed of good luck [luck is mentioned 12 times in this chapter!] far exceeding the usual allowance—now is the time for him to perform the service for which he was included in our Company; now is the time for him to earn his Reward.""

Now is the time, needless to say, that I'm sure Bilbo has his own thoughts about expectations and achievements. Once again, he brings Thorin up short and gets to the point... including coming as close as ever to a hobbity insult.

... ""If you mean you think it is my job to go into the secret passage first, O Thorin Thrain's son Oakenshield, may your beard grow ever longer," he said crossly, "say so at once and have done! I might refuse. I have got you out of two messes already, which were hardly in the original bargain, so that I am, I think, already owed some reward. But 'third time pays for all' as my father used to say, and somehow I don't think I shall refuse. Perhaps I have begun to trust my luck more that I used to in the old days"--he meant last spring before he left his own house, but it seemed centuries ago--"but anyway I think I will go and have a peep at once and get it over. Now who is coming with me?"
... He did not expect a chorus of volunteers, so he was not disappointed."

Bilbo? Disappointed? Vexed? By now, he not only has Thorin's number, but the others as well.

Do you think Bilbo anticipated this moment, or were they all too distracted about just getting to the mountain and trying to find the door to consider what came next?

What do you think of his tone as he teases that he may refuse to go, but then says he'll go to have a peep? Is he living up to the hobbity way of making light of dire situations, or is he just messing with them? Do you think Bilbo's sounding more like Gandalf as he relates to the dwarves?

Why do you think Fili and Kili were the only ones pointed out to seem chagrinned? Balin exceeded the other dwarves in showing his quality as the only one to volunteer to attend Bilbo...but only to a point.

Bilbo could hear the dwarves back at the tunnel entrance. What do you suppose the dwarves hovering around the door were whispering? Do you think Bilbo could make out what they were saying? Or if Balin could... and would it affect how he felt about Bilbo and/or his comrades?


And so it begins. Bilbo screws himself up to pass through the door and down into the dark.

... "He was altogether alone. Soon he thought it was beginning to feel warm. "Is that a kind of a glow I seem to see coming right ahead down there?" he thought.
... It was. As he went forward it grew and grew, till there was no doubt about it. It was a red light steadily getting redder and redder. Also it was now undoubtedly hot in the tunnel. Wisps of vapour floated up and past him and he began to sweat. A sound, too, began to throb in his ears, a sort of bubbling like the noise of a large pot galloping on the fire, mixed with a rumble as of a gigantic tom-cat purring. This grew to be the unmistakable gurgling noise of some vast animal snoring in its sleep down there in the red glow in front of him.
... It was at this point that Bilbo stopped. Going on from there was the bravest thing he ever did. The tremendous things that happened afterward were as nothing compared to it. He fought the real battle in the tunnel alone, before he ever saw the vast danger that lay in wait. At any rate after a short halt go on he did; and you can picture him coming to the end of the tunnel, an opening of much the same size and shape as the door above. Through it peeps the hobbit's little head."

Looks like he did have a peep afterall!! Do you think the anxiety of travelling the tunnel alone and getting gradual hints of what he was experiencing were effective at building tension for the reader/audience? Do you remember YOUR first impression as you travelled down with him?

WANTED: Sharing of any thoughts or comments.

***Tomorrow... Bilbo plays the hobbit game, "cup"

[text taken from J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit: Inside Information, 1965 Ballantine edition, pgs 203-222]


sample

"There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West."
~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."

I really need these new films to take me back to, and not re-introduce me to, that magical world.



TORn's Observations Lists

Subject User Time
**Hobbit Discussion – Inside Information** Part 1 – Bilbo earns his reward grammaboodawg Send a private message to grammaboodawg Jun 8 2009, 1:59pm
    Thoughts. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 8 2009, 2:57pm
        *nods and chuckles intermittently* grammaboodawg Send a private message to grammaboodawg Jun 8 2009, 7:00pm
    Peep! Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 8 2009, 4:16pm
        *snigger* Did you see the 2nd one? ;) // grammaboodawg Send a private message to grammaboodawg Jun 8 2009, 6:53pm
            Whups! Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 8 2009, 11:12pm
    Tolkien's characterization of dwarves makes me uncomfortable. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 8 2009, 7:28pm
        That 1965 interview N.E. Brigand Send a private message to N.E. Brigand Jun 8 2009, 8:01pm
            Does Rateliffe mention 1965? FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 8 2009, 8:51pm
                Recorded in 1965, broadcast in 1971 (see Scull/Hammond). // N.E. Brigand Send a private message to N.E. Brigand Jun 8 2009, 10:09pm
                I'm fairly sure that the 1971 audio is an edited version of the 1965 interview Voronwë_the_Faithful Send a private message to Voronwë_the_Faithful Jun 9 2009, 6:32am
                    Very interesting! Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 4:53pm
                        Indeed! Voronwë_the_Faithful Send a private message to Voronwë_the_Faithful Jun 9 2009, 5:07pm
                            Yes, I can see why Christopher may not Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 5:14pm
                            WOW! Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:30pm
                                For all we know N.E. Brigand Send a private message to N.E. Brigand Jun 9 2009, 6:49pm
                                    For all we know, what? Voronwë_the_Faithful Send a private message to Voronwë_the_Faithful Jun 9 2009, 7:09pm
                                        We've only just begun N.E. Brigand Send a private message to N.E. Brigand Jun 9 2009, 7:29pm
        So you weren't uncomfortable FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 8 2009, 9:38pm
            No, now that Tolkien made the real-world comparison, Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 8 2009, 11:12pm
        Tolkien's personal arc Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 8 2009, 11:17pm
            What makes me uncomfortable... FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 10:08am
                Some do, and some don't sador Send a private message to sador Jun 9 2009, 10:16am
                But I do mind. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 1:24pm
                    That's the problem... FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 2:17pm
                        That's a nice way of letting Tolkien off the hook. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 2:46pm
                            The interview raises several points. FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 3:56pm
                                Tolkien is, however, Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 4:21pm
                                    Match how? Voronwë_the_Faithful Send a private message to Voronwë_the_Faithful Jun 9 2009, 4:37pm
                                        That stereotype right there Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:19pm
                                            I think that is a real stretch to call that a negative stereotype Voronwë_the_Faithful Send a private message to Voronwë_the_Faithful Jun 9 2009, 5:37pm
                                                My bad Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:49pm
                                                    Can you expand on this? Voronwë_the_Faithful Send a private message to Voronwë_the_Faithful Jun 9 2009, 7:02pm
                                                        Like, okay. Tremendous love, not so much. Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 10 2009, 11:26pm
                                                    Whoa squire Send a private message to squire Jun 9 2009, 8:41pm
                                                        Does a cathedral count as an artefact? Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 8:51pm
                                                            Huh? squire Send a private message to squire Jun 10 2009, 12:06am
                                                                Fair enough.// Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 10 2009, 12:21am
                                                                Not so idealized. FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 10 2009, 8:41am
                                                                    Letter 202: "Art or cash." Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 10 2009, 1:18pm
                                                                        Or girls. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 10 2009, 1:42pm
                                                                        It's not a dichotomy FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 10 2009, 2:13pm
                                                                            It's a continuum. Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 10 2009, 2:42pm
                                                                                The treatment gave him pause. N.E. Brigand Send a private message to N.E. Brigand Jun 10 2009, 2:45pm
                                                                                    Was the Professor a "bleeder"? Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 10 2009, 3:49pm
                                                                                Yeah. FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 10 2009, 4:18pm
                                                                                    Yeah Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 10 2009, 4:38pm
                                                                                        "'No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.'" Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 10 2009, 4:54pm
                                                                                            What about a woman? Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 10 2009, 5:14pm
                                                                                                I'm afraid Johson Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 10 2009, 5:15pm
                                                                                            I'm a Blockhead. Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 10 2009, 11:48pm
                                                                    I see the discrepancy now. Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 10 2009, 11:41pm
                                                            There's art and then there's art Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 10 2009, 11:32pm
                                                    Shaping versus shape? Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 9 2009, 8:48pm
                                                        Very good point! Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 10 2009, 11:29pm
                                        Tolkien does not Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 5:49pm
                                    You're right. FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 5:04pm
                                        It's a delicate matter. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 5:25pm
                                            Culture versus race Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:42pm
                                    This is why... Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:13pm
                                        I'm more worried about what I unconsciously reveal. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 9:12pm
                                            Sounds familiar. Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 10 2009, 11:36pm
                        That's a nice way of letting all authors off the hook. N.E. Brigand Send a private message to N.E. Brigand Jun 9 2009, 4:09pm
                            I'm not sure why they're on the hook in the first place. FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 5:44pm
                                At most, Tolkien is on the hook Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 6:01pm
                    Exactly Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 4:43pm
                Degrees of Discomfort Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 4:39pm
                    But had he outgrown it in 1965?// Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 4:51pm
                        He was working on it. Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:21pm
                    One might see The Hobbit as a sign of growth sador Send a private message to sador Jun 9 2009, 4:56pm
                        Gimli and Galadriel Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:47pm
            I give him both more and less credit than that. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 1:55pm
                every one Twit Send a private message to Twit Jun 9 2009, 2:09pm
                    Greed, etc. Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 5:04pm
                        Thank you Twit Send a private message to Twit Jun 10 2009, 10:21am
                Ubiquitous Patterns of Thought Dreamdeer Send a private message to Dreamdeer Jun 9 2009, 4:54pm
                    We're still human FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 5:17pm
    "flexes his oratory muscles"! dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Jun 9 2009, 2:18am
        Thorin did, in 'A Warm Welcome' sador Send a private message to sador Jun 9 2009, 6:06am
            The current situation dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Jun 9 2009, 11:12am
    Let's hope this wasn't the case:)... batik Send a private message to batik Jun 9 2009, 3:29am
        That's what I love about doing these grammaboodawg Send a private message to grammaboodawg Jun 11 2009, 4:47pm
    Citizen soldier vs. hero Beren IV Send a private message to Beren IV Jun 9 2009, 5:25am
        Bilbo, Frodo, Merry, Sam, and Pippin Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 5:08pm
            Except they're not fighting soldiers (for the most part) Beren IV Send a private message to Beren IV Jun 9 2009, 8:12pm
                Those monsters Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 9 2009, 9:05pm
                    Imperial Stormtrooper Syndrome Darkstone Send a private message to Darkstone Jun 9 2009, 9:10pm
                    Tolkien did not undestand evil Beren IV Send a private message to Beren IV Jun 10 2009, 12:41am
                        I don't think it's about not understanding. FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 10 2009, 8:55am
                            Gee, that's pretty close Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 10 2009, 5:13pm
                        The men under Sauron (and Saruman) are different. Curious Send a private message to Curious Jun 10 2009, 1:31pm
    here goes... Twit Send a private message to Twit Jun 9 2009, 11:55am
    "Say so at once, and have done!" FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Jun 9 2009, 1:55pm
    Preparing Himself for the Worst GaladrielTX Send a private message to GaladrielTX Jun 9 2009, 11:10pm
        Playing peek-a-boo dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Jun 9 2009, 11:49pm
        Merry did sador Send a private message to sador Jun 10 2009, 6:09am

 
 
 

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