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And whither then? I cannot say.


Happy birthday to Bilbo and Frodo Baggins! Today is the anniversary of the Long-Expected Party celebrating Bilbo's eleventy-first birthday and Frodo's coming of age in The Lord of the Rings. It was on this day that Bilbo gave his infamous birthday speech, saying "I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve," before disappearing from the Shire forever. My thoughts are with the Lómelindi Smial of the Tolkien Society and everyone else who will be celebrating the Baggins Birthdays. Tomorrow I head off to spend several days in the Shire for A Long-Expected Party 3: The Road Goes Ever On and On. I look forward to seeing some of you there!

Also on this day, according to the Appendices of The Lord of the Rings, 99-year-old Samwise Gamgee rode out from Bag End for the final time. He was last seen in Middle-Earth by his daughter Elanor, to whom he presented the Red Book. According to tradition, he then went to the Grey Havens and passed over the Sea, last of the Ringbearers.


And now, in honor of the Baggins Birthdays, the departure of Samwise, and Hobbits in general, a quote about the Ring's temptation of - and failure with - one of J.R.R. Tolkien's (and, for that matter, world literature's) greatest heroes, Samwise Gamgee:

"Wild fantasies arose in his mind; and he saw Samwise the Strong, Hero of the Age, striding with a flaming sword across the darkened land, and armies flocking to his call as he marched to the overthrow of Barad-dûr. And then all the clouds rolled away, and the white sun shone, and at his command the vale of Gorgoroth became a garden of flowers and trees and brought forth fruit. He had only to put on the Ring and claim it for his own, and all this could be. In that hour of trial it was the love of his master that helped most to hold him firm; but also deep down in him lived still unconquered his plain hobbit-sense: he knew in the core of his heart that he was not large enough to bear such a burden, even if such visions were not a mere cheat to betray him. The one small garden of a free gardener was all his need and due, not a garden swollen to a realm; his own hands to use, not the hands of others to command."
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

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Comments

( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
internet_sampo
Sep. 22nd, 2014 01:21 pm (UTC)
eldritchhobbit
Sep. 22nd, 2014 08:52 pm (UTC)
Oh, how perfect! Beautiful.
mrua7
Sep. 22nd, 2014 01:34 pm (UTC)
Didn't realize that...but somewhere in my psyche I must have as I had this compulsion to start re-reading the series last night (for the umpteenth time)...beginning with the Hobbit of course.

Happy Birthday Bilbo and Frodo!

Edited at 2014-09-22 01:35 pm (UTC)
eldritchhobbit
Sep. 22nd, 2014 08:53 pm (UTC)
Yay! What excellent timing!
cookiefleck
Sep. 22nd, 2014 02:41 pm (UTC)
Lovely post. :)
eldritchhobbit
Sep. 22nd, 2014 08:54 pm (UTC)
Thank you! *hugs* Happy Hobbit Day to you!
mosinging1986
Sep. 23rd, 2014 03:06 am (UTC)
Also on this day, according to the Appendices of The Lord of the Rings, 99-year-old Samwise Gamgee rode out from Bag End for the final time. He was last seen in Middle-Earth by his daughter Elanor, to whom he presented the Red Book. According to tradition, he then went to the Grey Havens and passed over the Sea, last of the Ringbearers.


Oh, I find that so unbearably sad and beautiful. My Sam! I loved him so.
eldritchhobbit
Sep. 30th, 2014 06:43 pm (UTC)
"Sad and beautiful" is the perfect way to describe it!

Edited at 2014-09-30 06:43 pm (UTC)
gilda_elise
Sep. 23rd, 2014 11:21 am (UTC)
One of these days I've got to read these books. *g* I love the movies, but I know there's so much left out.
eldritchhobbit
Sep. 30th, 2014 06:45 pm (UTC)
Oh my, you really must! *bounces and flails* The films are like the PowerPoint presentation of the story. There's so much more there! If you liked them, you'll adore the books. *bounces and flails some more*

Edited at 2014-09-30 06:45 pm (UTC)
gilda_elise
Oct. 1st, 2014 09:07 pm (UTC)
It certainly sounds as if I should. I have TLotR, but not The Hobbit, though I've heard you don't necessarily have to read it in order to enjoy the rest.

Edited at 2014-10-01 09:07 pm (UTC)
eldritchhobbit
Oct. 3rd, 2014 09:00 pm (UTC)
That's very true: you can easily read TLotR first without having read The Hobbit!

Edited at 2014-10-03 09:01 pm (UTC)
mosinging1986
Sep. 30th, 2014 09:49 pm (UTC)
They are beautiful! I had a hard time my first time around, but they finally clicked for me and now I re-read them whenever I can. The language in RotK alone is so beautiful that I have to stop so often because it overwhelms me.
gilda_elise
Oct. 1st, 2014 09:09 pm (UTC)
That's some recommendation! I'll definitely have to think about it. :-)

Edited at 2014-10-01 09:09 pm (UTC)
mosinging1986
Oct. 2nd, 2014 03:42 am (UTC)
I had to stop reading on the train so many times because I would start crying from just the beauty of it all. (And I don't usually cry while reading books!)

You're welcome. Good luck.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )