Dec 9 2012, 5:32pm
This is a Book Spoiler that describes buildings and homes in the Shire... for a moment of Tolkien-zen.
From the Prologue: Concerning Hobbits: The Fellowship of the Ring
... All Hobbits had originally lived in holes in the ground, or so they believed, and in such dwellings they still felt most at home; but in the course of time they had been obliged to adopt other forms of abode. Actually in the Shire in Bilbo's days it was, as a rule, only the richest and the poorest Hobbits that maintained the old custom. The poorest went on living in burrows of the most primitive kind, mere holes indeed, with only one window or none; while the well-to-do still constructed more luxurious versions of the simple diggings of old. But suitable sites for these large and ramifying tunnels (or smials as they called them) were not everywhere to be found; and in the flats and the low-lying districts the Hobbits... ...began to build above ground... ...many houses of wood, brick, or stone. These were specially favoured by millers, smiths, ropers, and cartwrights, and others of that sort; for even when they had holes to live in, Hobbits had long been accustomed to build sheds and workshops.
... The habit of building far-houses and barns was said to have begun among the inhabitants of the Marish down by the Brandywine... ...It is probable that the craft of building, as many other crafts besides, was derived from the Dúnedain. But the Hobbits may have learned it direct from the Elves, the teachers of Men in their youth....
... ...The craft of building may have come from Elves or Men, but the Hobbits used it in their own fashion. They did not go in for towers. Their houses were usually long, low, and comfortable. The oldest kind were, indeed, no more than built imitations of smials, thatched with dry grass or straw, or roofed with turves, and having walls somewhat bulged. That stage, however, belonged to the early days of the Shire, and hobbit-building had long since been altered, improved by devices, learned from Dwarves, or discovered by themselves. A preference for round windows, and even round doors, was the chief remaining peculiarity of hobbit-architecture.
... The houses and the holes of Shire-hobbits were often large, and inhabited by large families... ...Sometimes, as in the case of the Tooks of Great Smials, or the Brandybucks of Brandy Hall, many generations of relatives lived in (comparative) peace together in one ancestral and many-tunnelled mansion...."
... ...Brandy Hall occupied the whole of the low hill, and had three large front-doors, many side-doors, and about a hundred windows."
I really need these new films to take me back to, and not re-introduce me to, that magical world.
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