Skip to main content

Questions tagged [the-hobbit]

For questions about The Hobbit, a 1937 Children's novel by Tolkien. Please always use with the [tolkiens-legendarium] tag. For questions about the film adaptations use in conjunction with the film tags, [an-unexpected-journey], etc.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
1 vote
0 answers
177 views

Why does Gandalf question Thorin after he had found the note?

Why does Gandalf question Thorin about their orc hunters, AFTER he had already found a note in black speech offering payment for Thorin's head and showing him this in the tavern. Gandalf and Balin ...
Emma's user avatar
  • 27
12 votes
2 answers
739 views

Which plant was used as Athelas in LOTR / Hobbit movies?

There is already an exquisite thread concerning the plant described in the book link here and its relative real life counterpart, but my question is about the one actually used in the movies . Any ...
Mars_87's user avatar
  • 131
36 votes
2 answers
4k views

What does the inscription on the pot of gold in "A Conversation with Smaug" say?

Tolkien painted a watercolour picture of "A Conversation with Smaug" for the cover of The Hobbit. In the lower left corner there is a pot containing a pile of gold with an Elvish(?) ...
WOPR's user avatar
  • 20.1k
2 votes
2 answers
305 views

Is there any backstory for the "extraordinary luck of widow's sons"?

“Gandalf, Gandalf!  Good gracious me!  Not the wandering wizard that gave Old Took a pair of magic diamond studs that fastened themselves and never came undone till ordered?  Not the fellow who used ...
JoshuaD's user avatar
  • 323
16 votes
3 answers
5k views

What two things did Bilbo say that Gandalf interpreted as asking for an adventure?

I mean, you used to upset things pretty badly in these parts once upon a time.  I beg your pardon, but I had no idea you were still in business.”    “Where else should I be?” said the wizard.  “All ...
JoshuaD's user avatar
  • 323
1 vote
1 answer
809 views

Who was buried at the High ­Fells of Rhudaur?

I was recently rewatching the Hobbit movies and one thing stood out to me. From reading the various answers here, it was discussed that: The Nazgul are not undead but just wraiths (i.e. faded due to ...
Arun Balasubramaniam's user avatar
20 votes
2 answers
9k views

Did Gollum eat an orc child?

While looking for answers to another question about orcs on Quora, I read an answer that referred to Gollum killing and eating an orc child in the Hobbit, but I don't recall coming across that when I ...
Nu'Daq's user avatar
  • 26.6k
-6 votes
1 answer
367 views

Did Tolkien ever address Gandalf's propensity to take risks? [closed]

Gandalf wanted to get rid of Smaug, fearing that Smaug could eventually become an ally and tool of Sauron. But at the time of The Hobbit, Smaug was slumbering in Erebor. Gandalf explicitly discouraged ...
Keith Payne's user avatar
14 votes
2 answers
4k views

Compass/magnetic directions in Middle-earth

Maps in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit have North/South/East/West marked on them, and I am wondering if anyone can tell me what these directions mean and how they are determined in-universe. The ...
MissMonicaE's user avatar
  • 2,749
29 votes
1 answer
3k views

Had Bilbo with Thorin & Co. camped before the rainy night or hadn't they?

From The Hobbit, chapter 2, "Roast Mutton:" In the Lone-lands they had to camp when they could, but at least it had been dry. Then in the sixth paragraph later: They decided in the end ...
Lesser son's user avatar
  • 3,873
24 votes
4 answers
7k views

Do we ever see a hobbit use their natural ability to “disappear”?

The Fellowship of the Ring prologue contains the following information about hobbits: They possessed from the first the art of disappearing swiftly and silently, when large folk whom they do not wish ...
Darren's user avatar
  • 7,167
11 votes
1 answer
2k views

Where do Saruman's loyalties lie during the events of The Hobbit?

In The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Thorin's company comes to Rivendell. While there, Elrond, Galadriel, and Saruman privately brace Gandalf to inquire about his activities with the dwarves. (~1h35m)...
Tom's user avatar
  • 923
33 votes
1 answer
11k views

Does everyone always eat, drink and sleep for free everywhere in Middle-earth?

Maybe it has to do with the specific and unique circumstances in which the characters we follow in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings find themselves, but it seems to me that everyone always assumes ...
Boromir's user avatar
  • 413
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Did Bag End have a second door?

This is a map of Bag End from The Atlas of Middle-earth (found here.) There's a door at the end of the tunnel. Is it mentioned in the books? Or is the map not accurate?
Eugene's user avatar
  • 2,201
5 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why was this speech by Bilbo added to the Hobbit movie?

After the goblin ordeal, when the dwarves and Gandalf are waiting and wondering where Bilbo is, in the movie, he shows up after taking off the Ring and gives a great speech something along the lines ...
Balin's user avatar
  • 61
1 vote
1 answer
288 views

Did the eagles from Tolkien's works have other appearances where they saved the day?

The eagles play a pivotal deus ex machina role in both The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings. I have not read any of the background works about Middle Earth and would like to know if they played any ...
SDH's user avatar
  • 2,436
25 votes
3 answers
4k views

How can the bear-man refer to a "Jack-in-the-box" in The Hobbit?

The Hobbit is supposedly set waaay back in our world. Yet, Beorn refers to "jack-in-the-box" as in the toy, when the dwarves show up in pairs. How can this be? How can anyone in that world/...
Gloin's user avatar
  • 277
17 votes
1 answer
3k views

If the House of Elrond is the Last Homely House east of the Sea, what are the others?

As the books call it, Elrond's house is the Last Homely House east of the Sea. But if Rivendell is the last homely house, what are the other homely houses east of the sea? Or does Rivendell count as ...
Captain James T. Kirk's user avatar
13 votes
1 answer
1k views

What (if anything) do we know about the orcs who fought against Sauron?

So, in this question, I saw that it was mentioned that all the races of Middle-earth, save the Elves, fought both for and against Sauron during the War of the Last Alliance. The Silmarillion states: ...
nick012000's user avatar
  • 2,133
6 votes
1 answer
504 views

Why wasn't Thorin aware about the state of Mirkwood and the Old Forest Road?

In The Hobbit, in the "Queer Lodgings" chapter, Beorn explains to the company the dangers that they might face through Mirkwood: “But your way through Mirkwood is dark, dangerous and ...
htetr's user avatar
  • 311
14 votes
2 answers
4k views

How come Balin and Dwalin never mention their travel with Thrain II in The Hobbit?

I'm re-reading The Hobbit and I was wondering why there was no reference to Balin and Dwalin accompanying Thrain II on his attempt to go to Erebor. It seems to me that in The Hobbit they act as if ...
htetr's user avatar
  • 311
9 votes
1 answer
677 views

Has Tolkien ever commented on the similarity between the name "Baggins" and the French word for "ring"?

There is some discussion on the origins of the name Baggins in this question. However, it only revolves around whether or not it is related to Bilbo being a thief, and I am interested in something ...
Wade's user avatar
  • 5,602
10 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why did Gandalf change from blue to grey?

Everyone is familiar with Gandalf being described as "Gandalf the Grey", or, later, "Gandalf the White", and he was shown in both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies as ...
Razar Mackham's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why does Tolkien make Thorin to be older than Balin, only to present Balin in the Hobbit as "very old-looking"?

Tolkien characterized Balin in the Hobbit as "very old-looking": ... Instead there was a very old-looking dwarf on the step with a white beard and a scarlet hood; and he too hopped inside ...
GratefulDisciple's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
869 views

Why was Smaug able to take over Erebor with such ease?

The dwarves of Erebor were a powerful nation who were well aware of the existence of dragons (and their relative proximity to the Withered Heath). Despite vast resources, of both time and money, they ...
Stumbler's user avatar
  • 543
11 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why was the Arkenstone left when Smaug attacked the Lonely Mountain?

When Smaug attacked the dwarves' kingdom in the Lonely Mountain to settle down there, why was the Arkenstone left? It seems to be this item which makes the owner king of all dwarves, so why did they ...
Allerleirauh's user avatar
  • 2,191
-1 votes
1 answer
446 views

Why did Bilbo on Ravenhill prefer on the whole to defend the Elvenking?

Chapter XVII when the battle seemed lost and their faith doomed. Why thus Bilbo preferred on the whole to defend the Elvenking?
SNR's user avatar
  • 159
-1 votes
1 answer
201 views

Was Bilbo still on Ravenhill among the Elvenking's guard wearing the ring?

When the eagles had not come yet and the battle seemed lost, Bilbo stood on Ravenhill among the Elves and saw Gandalf sitting on the ground in deep thought, preparing, he supposed one last blast of ...
SNR's user avatar
  • 159
0 votes
1 answer
501 views

Does the Necromancer from "The Hobbit" have anything to do with the Dark Lord Sauron? [duplicate]

I finished reading The Hobbit around a week or so ago, and given how ominously the Necromancer was mentioned, I was sure he was being set up to be the main villain (or somebody very important to the ...
Ishaan Saha's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
85 views

Would the sword be visible if Bilbo wasn't holding it? [duplicate]

Today was rewatching the movie The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and got very curious about a scene after the riddle game between Gollum and Bilbo where Bilbo gets stuck between the cave walls / rocks ...
Tiago Peres's user avatar
  • 1,153
-2 votes
2 answers
863 views

How was the door to Bag End able to be green?

In The Hobbit (and The Lord of the Rings) the door to Bag End is described as green. I'm curious to know how this was achieved; is outdoor weather proof paint easily made, and a technology that would ...
painter's user avatar
  • 55
16 votes
3 answers
2k views

Why is Bilbo's door and Hobbit house so incredibly oversized in Tolkien's own final illustration in The Hobbit?

Tolkien was a good artist to say the least. He did not have problems with perspective and whatnot in the other illustrations he made for The Hobbit, so that can't really be the explanation. Yet, the ...
C. Capa's user avatar
  • 185
3 votes
0 answers
418 views

Do we know Sting's real name and anything else about its history? [duplicate]

During the events of The Hobbit, after dealing with the trolls, the Bilbo and co. find three magic weapons in the troll's lair: ... among them were several swords of various makes, shapes, and sizes. ...
NathanS's user avatar
  • 3,729
13 votes
1 answer
1k views

Do the trolls in the Hobbit have a magic purse, and did they enchant it themselves?

In The Hobbit, in chapter 2: Roast Mutton, there's a scene where Bilbo sneaks up on some trolls. Rather than go back and warn the dwarves, he attempts to pickpocket one of trolls before he does. From ...
NathanS's user avatar
  • 3,729
8 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why is the narration of the chapter "Riddles in the Dark" done in the first person?

I'm re-reading The Hobbit after years. Just started the chapter "Riddles in the Dark"... and I was struck by the use of first-person narrative in this chapter. "I should not have liked ...
Ameet Sharma's user avatar
  • 1,367
24 votes
3 answers
8k views

What was Thorin's plan if Bilbo hadn't woken up Smaug?

In The Hobbit, Thorin sends Bilbo in first to scout out the mountain and maybe snatch the Arkenstone if convenient, all ideally without waking the dragon (Smaug). Of course, the dragon is awakened and ...
Techrocket9's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why doesn't Thorin die when he is stabbed by Azog?

In the Hobbit movies, Thorin is stabbed by Azog two times: First in the foot and then the chest. The second stab was potentially fatal. Yet how did Thorin survive such a fatal stab, let alone have the ...
TheMadHatter's user avatar
  • 3,960
12 votes
1 answer
701 views

Why did Tolkien italicise ‘cram’?

In The Hobbit (or at least in my edition, HarperCollins 2011), the word ‘cram’ is italicised wherever it appears. Cram is (as according to Chapter XIII, Not at Home) biscuitish, keeps good ...
Fivesideddice's user avatar
80 votes
4 answers
35k views

Why does Smaug have 4 legs in the 1st movie but only 2 legs in the 2nd?

In the movie, The Hobbit: The Unexpected Journey, Smaug has 4 legs. If you look closely in this scene where he crawls into the mountain, he has 2 fore legs and 2 back legs. ...
RichS's user avatar
  • 38.7k
8 votes
1 answer
8k views

Why does Thorin tell Bilbo that he has "keen eyes"?

In the second film why does Thorin think Bilbo has keen eyes? Bilbo finds a mountain sized dwarf carved into a mountain that they are all standing next to and for some reason Thorin thinks it means ...
riscos3's user avatar
  • 237
12 votes
1 answer
3k views

Was Smaug sealed inside the Lonely Mountain?

The dwarves said there was no way into the mountain before Gandalf gave Thorin the key... in the movie. So I was wondering, how did Smaug get out to eat?
Cin4lotr's user avatar
  • 155
13 votes
3 answers
4k views

What does “We have long ago paid the goblins of Moria,” from The Hobbit mean?

“We have long ago paid the goblins of Moria,” said Thorin. From chapter 1 of the book The Hobbit by Tolkien. What does it mean? Did the goblins pay for their murder or did the dwarves stop paying ...
Interested fellow's user avatar
30 votes
2 answers
9k views

Was "The Hobbit" book ever abridged?

I know the Hobbit was written as a children's book (tale?) and I saw this when I searched the site for similar questions to this one. The story itself can certainly be regarded as almost a fairy tale ...
Don_S's user avatar
  • 725
27 votes
1 answer
6k views

How can Radagast come across Gandalf and Thorin's company?

At the moment, I'm reading The Hobbit, and I just watched the first movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. It was fun to note where the movie was following word by word the book, and when it gave ...
Mysterry's user avatar
  • 543
36 votes
2 answers
12k views

Why are Hobbits so fond of mushrooms?

In both the book and the movie it would seem that Hobbits are especially fond of mushrooms, sometimes braving dangers to harvest them. I have seen somewhere an interview in which Tolkien claimed he ...
Cascabel_StandWithUkraine_'s user avatar
43 votes
1 answer
11k views

Are all instances of trolls turning to stone ultimately references back to Tolkien?

Are there any antecedents other than Tolkien for trolls turning to stone? When I was a kid, I remember trolls appearing in one of the earliest episodes of The Real Ghostbusters (the fifth episode &...
Buzz's user avatar
  • 98.6k
-3 votes
1 answer
435 views

How do the Eagles decide where to drop people off?

In The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings, eagles appear occasionally. How do they decide where to drop people off? Is it directed by a character? Or are they conscious enough to decide on a ...
LevenTrek's user avatar
  • 7,329
65 votes
4 answers
11k views

Was the Lonely Mountain, where Smaug lived, a volcano?

Was the Lonely Mountain in The Hobbit a volcano? If not, how did the dwarves get enough heat to run the huge forges? I am asking about the books, not the movies.
user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
1k views

In-universe, is there any reason Gandalf considered the number thirteen to be unlucky?

In the first chapter of The Hobbit, Gandalf says this about choosing a hobbit for the fourteenth member of the party: “Of course there is a mark,” said Gandalf. “I put it there myself. For very ...
GGMG-he-him's user avatar
  • 6,496
30 votes
3 answers
10k views

Why did Gandalf put the dwarves and the hobbit in danger of going through the cursed forest?

Why did Gandalf put the dwarves and the hobbit in danger in The Desolation of Smaug by going through the "cursed forest"? Gandalf clearly said he would go another way around, which means there's ...
Drakespeare's user avatar

1
2 3 4 5
10