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When Bilbo and Frodo sail into the west with the Elves they are essentially abandoning their home at Bag End, as they are leaving the Shire permanently. Please tell me that the Sackville-Bagginses do not ultimately end up owning (and surely plundering) Bag End!

I've read Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and half of The Return of the King. I've read The Hobbit, but not for many years. I've not read the The Silmarillion or any of Tolkien's papers. I do not know the answer to this question, though.

Who inherited Bag End when Frodo and Bilbo left with the elves?

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    Read the remaining half of The Return of the King. The movie cut a lot about the return to the Shire...
    – Bakuriu
    Jul 9, 2013 at 10:17
  • Seriously, how long do you stretch your lecture of the books? It's not such a boring tale, is it? Jul 9, 2013 at 20:16
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    @leftaroundabout - I'm not sure what you mean by my "lecture of the books", but if you're asking why I haven't finished reading The Return of the King yet, the answer is yes, I find Tolkien's writing style to be very dry and difficult to navigate. His universe is amazing; his writing style doesn't speak to me well, though. Yeah, I said it. ;) Jul 9, 2013 at 23:44
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    @Slytherincess Two Words: Audio Books. I've never been able to finish LoTR or Dune... until I started listening to them. So much better...
    – WernerCD
    Jul 10, 2013 at 1:39
  • @WernerCD - Hey, that's a great idea! I happen to have the LOTR trilogy on audio (just recently acquired). I will totally do that. Thank you! :D Jul 10, 2013 at 2:10

3 Answers 3

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Frodo leaves everything to Sam when he sails over Sea. From "The Grey Havens", Chapter 9 of Book Six:

"But you are my heir: all that I had and might have I leave to you."

The Tale of Years, Appendix B describes how Sam was elected Mayor seven times, and then, in 1482:

Death of Mistress Rose, wife of Master Samwise, on Mid-year's Day. On September 22 Master Samwise rides out from Bag End. He comes to the Tower Hills, and is last seen by Elanor, to whom he gives the Red Book afterwards kept by the Fairbairns. Among them the tradition is handed down from Elanor that Samwise passed the Towers, and went to the Grey Havens, and passed over Sea, last of the Ring-bearers.

And although it isn't made explicit, the family trees in Appendix C show Sam's great-grandson Harding described as "Harding of the Hill", presumably referring to Hobbiton Hill and therefore implying that the family still lives at Bag End, which was under that hill. (Harding was descended from Sam's second child, Frodo: his first, Elanor, married Fastred of Greenholm and together they began a new settlement on the Westmarch, of which they became the Wardens.)

But you should also know that the Sackville-Bagginses are no longer enemies by the end of the book: Lobelia showed great courage in standing up to Sharkey (Saruman)'s gangs of thugs, and is forgiven by everyone including Frodo:

Then there was Lobelia. Poor thing, she looked very old and thin when they rescued her from a dark and narrow cell. She insisted on hobbling out on her own feet, and she had such a welcome, and there was such clapping and cheering when she appeared, leaning on Frodo's arm but still clutching her umbrella, that she was quite touched, and drove away in tears. She had never in her life been popular before. But she was crushed by the news of Lotho's murder, and would not return to Bag End. She gave it back to Frodo, and went to her own people, the Bracegirdles of Hardbottle.

When the poor creature died next spring - she was after all more than a hundred years old - Frodo was surprised and much moved: she had left all that remained of her money and of Lotho's for him to use in helping hobbits made homeless by the troubles. So that feud was ended.

If you haven't yet read The Scouring of the Shire, I do recommend it: for me it's among the best parts of the book.

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    Note the OP said they have only read "half of The Return of the King", and Lotho's ultimate outcome (in the paragraph about Lobelia) may come as a spoiler!
    – Adam V
    Jul 9, 2013 at 14:44
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    @AdamV: when asking a question about part of a book you've not read I don't think you can complain about spoilers... :)
    – Chris
    Jul 9, 2013 at 15:36
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    Scouring of the shire could and should be its own movie Jul 9, 2013 at 20:52
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    Those words about Sam and Rose make me tear up each time.
    – Mark Allen
    Jul 9, 2013 at 20:53
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    If there were was one thing I could change about the movies, it would be at least mentioning the Scouring of the Shire (and if there was two I'd put in Tom Bombadil)
    – tgrignon
    Feb 12, 2022 at 3:05
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Frodo left Bag End to Sam and his family when he went with Bilbo into the west. I don't currently have access to the book, so I hope information from the Lord of the Rings wiki is sufficient for now:

Frodo resumes living in Bag End and is joined by Sam, upon his marriage to Rosie Cotton. However, with wounds too deep to heal, in TA 3021 he names Sam his heir, and leaves across the sea. Bag End remains in the Gamgee family (later known as the Gardners) for at least three generations following Sam.

I'll update with relevant book quotes later if I can find my copy.

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It is not explicitly mentioned but pretty clear from the LOTR appendix that Sam and thus his (numerous) family inherit Bag End:

3021, S.R 1421

March 13 Frodo is again ill. 25. Birth of Elanor the Fair, daughter of Samwise. On this day the Fourth Age began in the reckoning of Gondor. September 21. Frodo and Samwise set out from Hobbiton. 22. They meet the Last Riding of the Keepers of the Rings in the Woody End. 29. The come to the Grey Havens, Frodo and Bilbo departs over Sea with the Three Keepers. The end of the Third Age. October 6. Samwise returns to Bag End.

1482

Death of Mistress Rose, wife of Master Samwise, on Mid-year's Day. On September 22 Master Samwise rides out from Bag End. He comes to the Tower Hills, and is last seen by Elanor, to whom he gives the Red Book afterwards kept by the Fairbairns. Among them the tradition is handed down from Elanor that Samwise passed the Towers, and went to the Grey Havens, and passed over Sea, last of the Ring-bearers.

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