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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
***The Hobbit Read-through; Ch 1 - An Unexpected Party
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cats16
Valinor


May 26, 2:44am

Post #51 of 64 (1365 views)
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Axe to the skull [In reply to] Can't Post

Ah, I see. Cleary in need of a nap!

There's some line about not-so-good dwarves having dealings with goblins. Must've been in the back of my mind when I reread the chapter.

Join us every weekend in the Hobbit movie forum for this week's CHOW (Chapter of the Week) discussion!




noWizardme
Valinor


May 26, 6:01am

Post #52 of 64 (1351 views)
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Shire [In reply to] Can't Post

My eBook reader can’t find the word “Shire” in The Hobbit either! Isn’t that fun- a bit like the LOTR Fellowship hardly ever calling themselves that.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


noWizardme
Valinor


May 26, 8:46am

Post #53 of 64 (1340 views)
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It’s his big QOE miscalculation [In reply to] Can't Post

In QOE, Gandalf expects Bilbo to be much readier for adventure than he is, and Bilbo’s comical behaviour when faced with the dwarves is said nearly to derail the entire plan. Gandalf is forced into cowing Thorin with prophecy.

It doesn’t work for me: how I read Bilbo in the “Good Morning” scene is that he has some glimmerings of realisation that his life is boring him. But if I were Gandalf on a vital Mission from Eru, then I wouldn’t rely on scratching a tune on Bilbo’s door, & waiting to see what happened. So I prefer my trickster Gandalf idea, where he does it that way for the lolz.

I suppose there’s the common problem when assessing an unpublished idea- I don’t think we can tell whether it went back into the drawer because it hadn’t worked, or whether Tolkien was settled on it and we “mustn’t boggle”.

~~~~~~
Where's that old read-through discussion?
A wonderful list of links to previous chapters in the 2014-2016 LOTR read-through (and to previous read-throughs) is curated by our very own 'squire' here http://users.bestweb.net/...-SixthDiscussion.htm


CuriousG
Half-elven


May 26, 11:18am

Post #54 of 64 (1330 views)
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Great Elephants! No "Shire" in The Hobbit? [In reply to] Can't Post

Now I'm afraid to search for "the One Ring" or "Sauron" in LOTR. They were never really there. They're just details avid fans made up to embellish Frodo's dream.
But anyway, that is surprising about the Shire not being named, not even on a map. But maybe it's because the focus is more on Bilbo and Bag End. We don't have other speaking hobbits in The Hobbit, and he leaves his homeland by the second chapter.


sevilodorf
Grey Havens


May 26, 7:44pm

Post #55 of 64 (1276 views)
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QOE Gandalf's machinations [In reply to] Can't Post

QOE -- a 1953 attempt to align The Hobbit and LOTR without changing the former by explaining Gandalf's motivations -- In 1937 Tolkien dropped into the story in the middle and didn't really worked out the whole back story and history of Middle Earth so he went back and reexamined why Gandalf did what he did --

But as Gandalf says in version B -- "I do not know the answer. For I have changed since those days and I am no longer trammelled by the burden of Middle-earth as I was then."

Tolkien acknowledges that Gandalf has changed and that not all of the tale will line up.

Gandalf says he carried the key and the map for nearly a hundred years .... to produce them at just the right moment --- fate -- divine intervention (as far is allowed under the idea of freedom of choice-- While Bilbo is "meant" to find the Ring he always has the choice to say no at any point in the journey.) The map cements the purpose of this being a "stealth" operation not a confrontation with the Dragon and thus requiring something unusual.. even absurd ... like a hobbit burglar.

In QOE is does mention that Gandalf took care so to arrange it that word of a large party of dwarves were not seen traveling together. Also more references to how Bilbo is looked at a bit strangely by his neighbors for he talks to dwarves, hasn't married (a trait of his more adventurous Took uncles) and kept to himself.

After Gandalf's excursion into Dol Guldur he urges the White Council to attack but Saruman's counsel to wait and see wins out.... but the situation in the North and the vulnerability of Lorien and Rivendell are constantly on his mind (for 90 years!!!) until he comes up with this absurd plan to deal with Smaug. A plan that somehow manages to succeed - allowing the North needed protection during the War of the Rings.... Long range planner indeed -- one of the benefits of being immortal.

Fourth Age Adventures at the Inn of the Burping Troll http://burpingtroll.com
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Otaku-sempai
Immortal


May 26, 10:11pm

Post #56 of 64 (1260 views)
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Gandalf and Thráin [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Gandalf says he carried the key and the map for nearly a hundred years .... to produce them at just the right moment --- fate -- divine intervention (as far is allowed under the idea of freedom of choice-- While Bilbo is "meant" to find the Ring he always has the choice to say no at any point in the journey.) The map cements the purpose of this being a "stealth" operation not a confrontation with the Dragon and thus requiring something unusual.. even absurd ... like a hobbit burglar.


Yes, Gandalf carried the map and key for over 90 years (2850-2941). What I've often wondered about was when did Gandalf first visit Moria. It must have been before he realized that the dying Dwarf he discovered in the dungeons of Dol Guldur was, in fact, Thráin son of Thrór, King of the Dwarves of Erebor. However, I suspect that was well after his investigation of Dol Guldur in the year 2850.

"I may be on the side of the angels, but do not think for one second that I am one of them." - Sherlock


sador
Half-elven


May 27, 5:17pm

Post #57 of 64 (1176 views)
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Reading to children [In reply to] Can't Post

The best part of it (if you have more than one) is to hear them discussing the book, or acting it out, afterwards.

I remember back in the time when I was forced to read Cinderella to Belladonna and Donnamira (not their real names, of course) - I tried to make it funny, mostly to amuse myself; but they really got into it.
One day, returning from work, I found the.living room a mess (i.e. decorated), and the two of them dancing with all kinds of shawls which belobg to tgeir mother. When Donnamira noticed me staring, she explained:
"We're having fun! We're tge stepsisters..."


sador
Half-elven


May 27, 7:53pm

Post #58 of 64 (1158 views)
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The maps! [In reply to] Can't Post

With the Cirth letters on them - but the language used is English!

What do you make of this? Why be half modernised and half "authentic"?


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


May 28, 3:44am

Post #59 of 64 (1052 views)
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Quite true. [In reply to] Can't Post

The Shire did not "exist" when The Hobbit was written - and surprisingly, Tolkien did not include it in his revision of Riddles in the Dark, even though he has Gollum later revealing that land to Sauron in LotR! (Or at least, that's what Gandalf claims, at the Council of Elrond.)


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"I desired dragons with a profound desire"


sador
Half-elven


May 28, 4:47am

Post #60 of 64 (1049 views)
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Well, I checked in the Family Trees (appendix C of LotR) [In reply to] Can't Post

and sure enough, Tolkien did provide an answer. And a rather mundane one.

It turns out that at the time of Bilbo's adventure, both of Belladonna's sister were still alive. And so were both her brothers-in-law.

So she had only one child (as opposed to her sisters), became a widow relatively young, and passed away long before them (and no, marrying a Baggins was no more marrying down than Donnamira did).

As for the qualities of Mr. Bungo Baggins - I did once write about that mysterious person; if there is any interest I'll try and dig that up.


(This post was edited by sador on May 28, 4:49am)


Murlo
Rivendell


May 29, 2:58pm

Post #61 of 64 (1007 views)
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Another practical reason for the Unexpected Party? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
why are the dwarves allowed to have such bad manners?


... They're more like some long-lost sailor uncle and his larger-than-life sailor mates unexpectedly turning up and radically enlivening a dull family gathering.

Looking for an explanation within the story, my suggestion is that the dwarves just assume Bilbo will behave as any dwarf host would. Manners are a cultural construct after all, and in real-life human cultures there are plenty of different takes on how hosts and guests should behave.

For all I know, well-behaved dwarves like these would have carefully enquired from Gandalf what food a host might have to offer, so that he can have the pleasure of offering it all...


The first few times I read this chapter, I only thought of the Unexpected Party as a reason to shake-up Bilbo's world and stir his Tookish side into adventure.

But the last time I read it, I thought it was a good thing that the dwarves ate all his food, otherwise it would have just rotted in Bilbo's pantry since he would be gone for over a year!

Maybe Gandalf was confident that Bilbo would join them the next day, so maybe he decided to put Bilbo's larders to good use and not let all that good food go to waste Laugh


Petty Dwarf
Bree


May 31, 7:16pm

Post #62 of 64 (976 views)
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I would assume... [In reply to] Can't Post

...that the lettering on the map is in English, but written in Norse runes so as to give young readers the fun of deciphering it. If it was in Elvish or Dwarvish, it would seem like gibberish.

(sorry to enter this so late. I've been busy)

"No words were laid on stream or stone
When Durin woke and walked alone."


Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Jun 17, 10:15pm

Post #63 of 64 (457 views)
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all one save Boromir, possibly! [In reply to] Can't Post

 


joec_34
Rivendell


Jun 28, 2:06pm

Post #64 of 64 (339 views)
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Tookish Adventures [In reply to] Can't Post

I find it curious that Gandalf knew the Old Took, and hadn't been by the Shire since he had died. What Tookish adventures did he stoke/instigate, and why then is he so harsh with Pippin in LotR? One would think he might be more tender given Pippin's heritage. Perhaps it is Pip failing to live up to the Tookish expectations that Gandalf had from prior adventures.
To your humorous point, this might be fun to see on screen, (but I much prefer the mystery.)

"Happy painting and God bless, my friend." - Bob Ross

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