A Hobbit's Journal: From the Collection of Sam Gamgee

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Printed on deluxe recycled parchment paper, this journal celebrating J. R. R. Tolkien's classic tales makes a lovely gift, and is just as nice to keep! With magical two-color illustrations throughout (drawings made by Frodo Baggins's devoted companion, Sam Gamgee, on their travels throughout Middle-earth), it provides ample space for recording personal thoughts, reflections on Tolkien's masterpiece, or fantasies of your own creation. Also available in hardcover

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Overview

Printed on deluxe recycled parchment paper, this journal celebrating J. R. R. Tolkien's classic tales makes a lovely gift, and is just as nice to keep! With magical two-color illustrations throughout (drawings made by Frodo Baggins's devoted companion, Sam Gamgee, on their travels throughout Middle-earth), it provides ample space for recording personal thoughts, reflections on Tolkien's masterpiece, or fantasies of your own creation. Also available in hardcover

Bilbo Baggins, a respectable, well-to-do hobbit, lives comfortably in his hobbit-hole until the day the wandering wizard Gandalf chooses him to take part in an adventure from which he may never return.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
A timeless fantasy classic gets a great new look! Featuring stunning cover art from Peter Sís, this special edition of J.R.R. Tolkien's thrilling masterpiece is designed especially for younger readers. With larger print and wider margins, as well as Tolkien's original interior illustrations and maps, this book brings the magic of The Hobbitt to a whole new generation.
Horn Book Guide
All those, young or old, who love a finely imagined story, beautifully told, will take The Hobbit to their hearts.
Times of London
A flawless masterpiece.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Noted artist Hague provides 48 dazzling paintings for this first-ever version of the timeless fantasy classic. All ages. (Oct.)
Publishers Weekly
Between the film release of Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings, this is the season of the magical movie, and this audiobook is an inevitable spinoff. Countless readers have grown up on the adventures of the little furry hobbits who crave good food and a warm bed, but wind up trapped in caves, attacked by spiders and burdened by a dizzying assortment of treacherous adventures. While the stories are quite intricate, the message of good triumphing over evil is always evident. This appealing theme of the downtrodden overcoming obstacles is what keeps listeners' attention. There is so much action on this dramatization that listeners may often feel pulled in many directions. The narrators, including Ray Reinhardt as Bilbo and Bernard Mayes as Gandalf, are engaging, and the sound effects (including noises in the cave or forest, or the hobbits sitting down to a meal) are also quite strong. But those not already familiar with the story may find it difficult to distinguish between the various characters or keep track of all the action. Listeners will probably want to read the book along with listening, or perhaps listen and then watch the movie. The tapes are presented in a rustic-looking wooden box, making this appropriate for gift giving. (Oct.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
First published in the U.K. in 1937, this is the volume that introduced the world to hobbits, Middle-earth, Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf the wizard, and the Ring of power. A new edition, formatted for younger readers, was released in August and features cover art by Peter S s (ISBN 0-618-16221-6. $18; pap. ISBN 0-618-15082-X. $10). Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762409549
  • Publisher: Running Press Book Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/28/2001
  • Edition description: JOURNAL
  • Pages: 96
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

J.R.R. Tolkien
It seems an unlikely formula for success: an Oxford professor of Anglo-Saxon, and a book that begins with a little man who lives in a hole in the ground. But The Hobbit, followed by The Lord of the Rings, created the modern genre of heroic fantasy and made J.R.R. Tolkien one of the most widely-read authors in the world.

Biography

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on the 3rd January, 1892 at Bloemfontein in the Orange Free State, but at the age of four he and his brother were taken back to England by their mother. After his father's death the family moved to Sarehole, on the south-eastern edge of Birmingham. Tolkien spent a happy childhood in the countryside and his sensibility to the rural landscape can clearly be seen in his writing and his pictures.

His mother died when he was only twelve and both he and his brother were made wards of the local priest and sent to King Edward's School, Birmingham, where Tolkien shine in his classical work. After completing a First in English Language and Literature at Oxford, Tolkien married Edith Bratt. He was also commissioned in the Lancashire Fusiliers and fought in the battle of the Somme. After the war, he obtained a post on the New English Dictionary and began to write the mythological and legendary cycle which he originally called "The Book of Lost Tales" but which eventually became known as The Silmarillion.

In 1920 Tolkien was appointed Reader in English Language at the University of Leeds which was the beginning of a distinguished academic career culminating with his election as Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford. Meanwhile Tolkien wrote for his children and told them the story of The Hobbit. It was his publisher, Stanley Unwin, who asked for a sequel to The Hobbit and gradually Tolkien wrote The Lord of the Rings, a huge story that took twelve years to complete and which was not published until Tolkien was approaching retirement. After retirement Tolkien and his wife lived near Oxford, but then moved to Bournemouth. Tolkien returned to Oxford after his wife's death in 1971. He died on 2 September 1973 leaving The Silmarillion to be edited for publication by his son, Christopher.

Author biography courtesy of HarperCollins (UK).

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    1. Also Known As:
      John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (full name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      January 3, 1892
    2. Place of Birth:
      Bloemfontein, Orange Free State (South Africa)
    1. Date of Death:
      September 2, 1973
    2. Place of Death:
      Oxford, England

Read an Excerpt

Chapter I
AN UNEXPECTED PARTY
IN A HOLE IN THE GROUND there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet
hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry,
bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was
a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.
It had a perfectly round door like a porthole, painted green,
with a shiny yellow brass knob in the exact middle. The door opened
on to a tube-shaped hall like a tunnel: a very comfortable tunnel
without smoke, with panelled walls, and floors tiled and carpeted,
provided with polished chairs, and lots and lots of pegs for hats and
coats—the hobbit was fond of visitors. The tunnel wound on and on,
going fairly but not quite straight into the side of the hill—The
Hill, as all the people for many miles round called it—and many
little round doors opened out of it, first on one side and then on
another. No going upstairs for the hobbit: bedrooms, bathrooms,
cellars, pantries (lots of these), wardrobes (he had whole rooms
devoted to clothes), kitchens, dining-rooms, all were on the same
floor, and indeed on the same passage. The best rooms were all on the
left-hand side (going in), for these were the only ones to have
windows, deep-set round windows looking over his garden, and meadows
beyond, sloping down to the river.
This hobbit was a very well-to-do hobbit, and his name was
Baggins. The Bagginses had lived in the neighbourhood of The Hill for
time out of mind, and people considered them very respectable, not
only because most of them were rich, but also because they never had
any adventures or did anything unexpected: you could tell what a
Baggins would say on any question without the bother of asking him.
This is a story of how a Baggins had an adventure, and found himself
doing and saying things altogether unexpected. He may have lost the
neighbours' respect, but he gained—well, you will see whether he
gained anything in the end.
The mother of our particular hobbit—what is a hobbit? I
suppose hobbits need some description nowadays, since they have
become rare and shy of the Big People, as they call us. They are (or
were) a little people, about half our height, and smaller than the
bearded dwarves. Hobbits have no beards. There is little or no magic
about them, except the ordinary everyday sort which helps them to
disappear quietly and quickly when large stupid folk like you and me
come blundering along, making a noise like elephants which they can
hear a mile off. They are inclined to be fat in the stomach; they
dress in bright colours (chiefly green and yellow); wear no shoes,
because their feet grow natural leathery soles and thick warm brown
hair like the stuff on their heads (which is curly); have long clever
brown fingers, good-natured faces, and laugh deep fruity laughs
(especially after dinner, which they have twice a day when they can
get it). Now you know enough to go on with. As I was saying, the
mother of this hobbit—of Bilbo Baggins, that is—was the famous
Belladonna Took, one of the three remarkable daughters of the Old
Took, head of the hobbits who lived across The Water, the small river
that ran at the foot of The Hill. It was often said (in other
families) that long ago one of the Took ancestors must have taken a
fairy wife. That was, of course, absurd, but certainly there was
still something not entirely hobbitlike about them, and once in a
while members of the Took-clan would go and have adventures. They
discreetly disappeared, and the family hushed it up; but the fact
remained that the Tooks were not as respectable as the Bagginses,
though they were undoubtedly richer.
Not that Belladonna Took ever had any adventures after she
became Mrs. Bungo Baggins. Bungo, that was Bilbo's father, built the
most luxurious hobbit-hole for her (and partly with her money) that
was to be found either under The Hill or over The Hill or across The
Water, and there they remained to the end of their days. Still it is
probable that Bilbo, her only son, although he looked and behaved
exactly like a second edition of his solid and comfortable father,
got something a bit queer in his make-up from the Took side,
something that only waited for a chance to come out. The chance never
arrived, until Bilbo Baggins was grown up, being about fifty years
old or so, and living in the beautiful hobbit-hole built by his
father, which I have just described for you, until he had in fact
apparently settled down immovably.
By some curious chance one morning long ago in the quiet of
the world, when there was less noise and more green, and the hobbits
were still numerous and prosperous, and Bilbo Baggins was standing at
his door after breakfast smoking an enormous long wooden pipe that
reached nearly down to his woolly toes (neatly brushed)—Gandalf came
by. Gandalf! If you had heard only a quarter of what I have heard
about him, and I have only heard very little of all there is to hear,
you would be prepared for any sort of remarkable tale. Tales and
adventures sprouted up all over the place wherever he went, in the
most extraordinary fashion. He had not been down that way under The
Hill for ages and ages, not since his friend the Old Took died, in
fact, and the hobbits had almost forgotten what he looked like. He
had been away over The Hill and across The Water on businesses of his
own since they were all small hobbit-boys and hobbit-girls.
All that the unsuspecting Bilbo saw that morning was an old
man with a staff. He had a tall pointed blue hat, a long grey cloak,
a silver scarf over which his long white beard hung down below his
waist, and immense black boots.
"Good Morning!" said Bilbo, and he meant it. The sun was
shining, and the grass was very green. But Gandalf looked at him from
under long bushy eyebrows that stuck out further than the brim of his
shady hat.
"What do you mean?" he said. "Do you wish me a good morning,
or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that
you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?"
"All of them at once," said Bilbo. "And a very fine morning
for a pipe of tobacco out of doors, into the bargain. If you have a
pipe about you, sit down and have a fill of mine! There's no hurry,
we have all the day before us!" Then Bilbo sat down on a seat by his
door, crossed his legs, and blew out a beautiful grey ring of smoke
that sailed up into the air without breaking and floated away over
The Hill.
"Very pretty!" said Gandalf. "But I have no time to blow
smoke-rings this morning. I am looking for someone to share in an
adventure that I am arranging, and it's very difficult to find
anyone."
"I should think so—in these parts! We are plain quiet folk
and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable
things! Make you late for dinner! I can't think what anybody sees in
them," said our Mr. Baggins, and stuck one thumb behind his braces,
and blew out another even bigger smoke-ring. Then he took out his
morning letters, and began to read, pretending to take no more notice
of the old man. He had decided that he was not quite his sort, and
wanted him to go away. But the old man did not move. He stood leaning
on his stick and gazing at the hobbit without saying anything, till
Bilbo got quite uncomfortable and even a little cross.
"Good morning!" he said at last. "We don't want any
adventures here, thank you! You might try over The Hill or across The
Water." By this he meant that the conversation was at an end.
"What a lot of things you do use Good morning for!" said
Gandalf. "Now you mean that you want to get rid of me, and that it
won't be good till I move off."
"Not at all, not at all, my dear sir! Let me see, I don't
think I know your name?"
"Yes, yes, my dear sir—and I do know your name, Mr. Bilbo
Baggins. And you do know my name, though you don't remember that I
belong to it. I am Gandalf, and Gandalf means me! To think that I
should have lived to be good-morninged by Belladonna Took's son, as
if I was selling buttons at the door!"
"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 to tell such wonderful tales at parties, about dragons and
goblins and giants and the rescue of princesses and the unexpected
luck of widows' sons? Not the man that used to make such particularly
excellent fireworks! I remember those! Old Took used to have them on
Midsummer's Eve. Splendid! They used to go up like great lilies and
snapdragons and laburnums of fire and hang in the twilight all
evening!" You will notice already that Mr. Baggins was not quite so
prosy as he liked to believe, also that he was very fond of
flowers. "Dear me!" he went on. "Not the Gandalf who was responsible
for so many quiet lads and lasses going off into the Blue for mad
adventures? Anything from climbing trees to visiting elves—or sailing
in ships, sailing to other shores! Bless me, life used to be quite
inter—I mean, you used to upset things 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 the same I am
pleased to find you remember something about me. You seem to remember
my fireworks kindly, at any rate, and that is not without hope.
Indeed for your old grandfather Took's sake, and for the sake of poor
Belladonna, I will give you what you asked for."
"I beg your pardon, I haven't asked for anything!"
"Yes, you have! Twice now. My pardon. I give it you. In fact
I will go so far as to send you on this adventure. Very amusing for
me, very good for you—and profitable too, very likely, if you ever
get over it."
"Sorry! I don't want any adventures, thank you. Not today.
Good morning! But please come to tea—any time you like! Why not
tomorrow? Come tomorrow! Good bye!" With that the hobbit turned and
scuttled inside his round green door, and shut it as quickly as he
dared, not to seem rude. Wizards after all are wizards.
"What on earth did I ask him to tea for!" he said to himself,
as he went to the pantry. He had only just had breakfast, but he
thought a cake or two and a drink of something would do him good
after his fright.
Gandalf in the meantime was still standing outside the door,
and laughing long but quietly. After a while he stepped up, and with
the spike on his staff scratched a queer sign on the hobbit's
beautiful green front-door. Then he strode away, just about the time
when Bilbo was finishing his second cake and beginning to think that
he had escaped adventures very well.
The next day he had almost forgotten about Gandalf. He did
not remember things very well, unless he put them down on his
Engagement Tablet: like this: Gandalf Tea Wednesday. Yesterday he had
been too flustered to do anything of the kind.
Just before tea-time there came a tremendous ring on the
front-door bell, and then he remembered! He rushed and put on the
kettle, and put out another cup and saucer, and an extra cake or two,
and ran to the door.
"I am so sorry to keep you waiting!" he was going to say,
when he saw that it was not Gandalf at all. It was a dwarf with a
blue beard tucked into a golden belt, and very bright eyes under his
dark-green hood. As soon as the door was opened, he pushed inside,
just as if he had been expected.
He hung his hooded cloak on the nearest peg, and "Dwalin at
your service!" he said with a low bow.
"Bilbo Baggins at yours!" said the hobbit, too surprised to
ask any questions for the moment. When the silence that followed had
become uncomfortable, he added: "I am just about to take tea; pray
come and have some with me." A little stiff perhaps, but he meant it
kindly. And what would you do, if an uninvited dwarf came and hung
his things up in your hall without a word of explanation?
They had not been at table long, in fact they had hardly
reached the third cake, when there came another even louder ring at
the bell.
"Excuse me!" said the hobbit, and off he went to the door.
"So you have got here at last!" That was what he was going to
say to Gandalf this time. But it was not Gandalf. Instead there was a
very old-looking dwarf on the step with a white beard and a scarlet
hood; and he too hopped inside as soon as the door was open, just as
if he had been invited.
"I see they have begun to arrive already," he said when he
caught sight of Dwalin's green hood hanging up. He hung his red one
next to it, and "Balin at your service!" he said with his hand on his
breast.
"Thank you!" said Bilbo with a gasp. It was not the correct
thing to say, but they have begun to arrive had flustered him badly.
He liked visitors, but he liked to know them before they arrived, and
he preferred to ask them himself. He had a horrible thought that the
cakes might run short, and then he—as the host: he knew his duty and
stuck to it however painful—he might have to go without.
"Come along in, and have some tea!" he managed to say after
taking a deep breath.
"A little beer would suit me better, if it is all the same to
you, my good sir," said Balin with the white beard. "But I don't mind
some cake—seed-cake, if you have any."
"Lots!" Bilbo found himself answering, to his own surprise;
and he found himself scuttling off, too, to the cellar to fill a pint
beer-mug, and then to a pantry to fetch two beautiful round seed-
cakes which he had baked that afternoon for his after-supper morsel.
When he got back Balin and Dwalin were talking at the table
like old friends (as a matter of fact they were brothers). Bilbo
plumped down the beer and the cake in front of them, when loud came a
ring at the bell again, and then another ring.
"Gandalf for certain this time," he thought as he puffed
along the passage. But it was not. It was two more dwarves, both with
blue hoods, silver belts, and yellow beards; and each of them carried
a bag of tools and a spade. In they hopped, as soon as the door began
to open—Bilbo was hardly surprised at all.
"What can I do for you, my dwarves?" he said.
"Kili at your service!" said the one. "And Fili!" added the
other; and they both swept off their blue hoods and bowed.
"At yours and your family's!" replied Bilbo, remembering his
manners this time.
"Dwalin and Balin here already, I see," said Kili. "Let us
join the throng!"
"Throng!" thought Mr. Baggins. "I don't like the sound of
that. I really must sit down for a minute and collect my wits, and
have a drink." He had only just had a sip—in the corner, while the
four dwarves sat round the table, and talked about mines and gold and
troubles with the goblins, and the depredations of dragons, and lots
of other things which he did not understand, and did not want to, for
they sounded much too adventurous—when, ding-dong-a-ling-dang, his
bell rang again, as if some naughty little hobbit-boy was trying to
pull the handle off.
"Someone at the door!" he said, blinking.
"Some four, I should say by the sound," said Fili. "Besides,
we saw them coming along behind us in the distance."
The poor little hobbit sat down in the hall and put his head
in his hands, and wondered what had happened, and what was going to
happen, and whether they would all stay to supper. Then the bell rang
again louder than ever, and he had to run to the door. It was not
four after all, it was FIVE. Another dwarf had come along while he
was wondering in the hall. He had hardly turned the knob, before they
were all inside, bowing and saying "at your service" one after
another. Dori, Nori, Ori, Oin, and Gloin were their names; and very
soon two purple hoods, a grey hood, a brown hood, and a white hood
were hanging on the pegs, and off they marched with their broad hands
stuck in their gold and silver belts to join the others. Already it
had almost become a throng. Some called for ale, and some for porter,
and one for coffee, and all of them for cakes; so the hobbit was kept
very busy for a while.
A big jug of coffee had just been set in the hearth, the seed-
cakes were gone, and the dwarves were starting on a round of buttered
scones, when there came—a loud knock. Not a ring, but a hard rat-tat
on the hobbit's beautiful green door. Somebody was banging with a
stick!
Bilbo rushed along the passage, very angry, and altogether
bewildered and bewuthered—this was the most awkward Wednesday he ever
remembered. He pulled open the door with a jerk, and they all fell
in, one on top of the other. More dwarves, four more! And there was
Gandalf behind, leaning on his staff and laughing. He had made quite
a dent on the beautiful door; he had also, by the way, knocked out
the secret mark that he had put there the morning before.
"Carefully! Carefully!" he said. "It is not like you, Bilbo,
to keep friends waiting on the mat, and then open the door like a pop-
gun! Let me introduce Bifur, Bofur, Bombur, and especially Thorin!"
"At your service!" said Bifur, Bofur, and Bombur standing in
a row. Then they hung up two yellow hoods and a pale green one; and
also a sky-blue one with a long silver tassel. This last belonged to
Thorin, an enormously important dwarf, in fact no other than the
great Thorin Oakenshield himself, who was not at all pleased at
falling flat on Bilbo's mat with Bifur, Bofur, and Bombur on top of
him. For one thing Bombur was immensely fat and heavy. Thorin indeed
was very haughty, and said nothing about service; but poor Mr.
Baggins said he was sorry so many times, that at last he
grunted "pray don't mention it," and stopped frowning.
"Now we are all here!" said Gandalf, looking at the row of
thirteen hoods—the best detachable party hoods—and his own hat
hanging on the pegs. "Quite a merry gathering! I hope there is
something left for the late-comers to eat and drink! What's that?
Tea! No thank you! A little red wine, I think for me."
"And for me," said Thorin.
"And raspberry jam and apple-tart," said Bifur.
"And mince-pies and cheese," said Bofur.
"And pork-pie and salad," said Bombur.
"And more cakes—and ale—and coffee, if you don't mind,"
called the other dwarves through the door.
"Put on a few eggs, there's a good fellow!" Gandalf called
after him, as the hobbit stumped off to the pantries. "And just bring
out the cold chicken and pickles!"
"Seems to know as much about the inside of my larders as I do
myself!" thought Mr. Baggins, who was feeling positively flummoxed,
and was beginning to wonder whether a most wretched adventure had not
come right into his house. By the time he had got all the bottles and
dishes and knives and forks and glasses and plates and spoons and
things piled up on big trays, he was getting very hot, and red in the
face, and annoyed.
"Confusticate and bebother these dwarves!" he said
aloud. "Why don't they come and lend a hand?" Lo and behold! there
stood Balin and Dwalin at the door of the kitchen, and Fili and Kili
behind them, and before he could say knife they had whisked the trays
and a couple of small tables into the parlour and set out everything
afresh.
Gandalf sat at the head of the party with the thirteen
dwarves all round: and Bilbo sat on a stool at the fireside, nibbling
at a biscuit (his appetite was quite taken away), and trying to look
as if this was all perfectly ordinary and not in the least an
adventure. The dwarves ate and ate, and talked and talked, and time
got on. At last they pushed their chairs back, and Bilbo made a move
to collect the plates and glasses.
"I suppose you will all stay to supper?" he said in his
politest unpressing tones.
"Of course!" said Thorin. "And after. We shan't get through
the business till late, and we must have some music first. Now to
clear up!"
Thereupon the twelve dwarves—not Thorin, he was too
important, and stayed talking to Gandalf—jumped to their feet, and
made tall piles of all the things. Off they went, not waiting for
trays, balancing columns of plates, each with a bottle on the top,
with one hand, while the hobbit ran after them almost squeaking with
fright: "please be careful!" and "please, don't trouble! I can
manage." But the dwarves only started to sing:
Chip the glasses and crack the plates!
Blunt the knives and bend the forks!
That's what Bilbo Baggins hates—
Smash the bottles and burn the corks!

Cut the cloth and tread on the fat!
Pour the milk on the pantry floor!
Leave the bones on the bedroom mat!
Splash the wine on every door!

Dump the crocks in a boiling bowl;
Pound them up with a thumping pole;
And when you've finished, if any are whole,
Send them down the hall to roll!

That's what Bilbo Baggins hates!
So, carefully! carefully with the plates!
And of course they did none of these dreadful things, and
everything was cleaned and put away safe as quick as lightning, while
the hobbit was turning round and round in the middle of the kitchen
trying to see what they were doing. Then they went back, and found
Thorin with his feet on the fender smoking a pipe. He was blowing the
most enormous smoke-rings, and wherever he told one to go, it went—up
the chimney, or behind the clock on the mantelpiece, or under the
table, or round and round the ceiling; but wherever it went it was
not quick enough to escape Gandalf. Pop! he sent a smaller smoke-ring
from his short clay-pipe straight through each one of Thorin's. Then
Gandalf's smoke-ring would go green and come back to hover over the
wizard's head. He had a cloud of them about him already, and in the
dim light it made him look strange and sorcerous. Bilbo stood still
and watched—he loved smoke-rings—and then he blushed to think how
proud he had been yesterday morning of the smoke-rings he had sent up
the wind over The Hill.
"Now for some music!" said Thorin. "Bring out the
instruments!"
Kili and Fili rushed for their bags and brought back little
fiddles; Dori, Nori, and Ori brought out flutes from somewhere inside
their coats; Bombur produced a drum from the hall; Bifur and Bofur
went out too, and came back with clarinets that they had left among
the walking-sticks. Dwalin and Balin said: "Excuse me, I left mine in
the porch!" "Just bring mine in with you!" said Thorin. They came
back with viols as big as themselves, and with Thorin's harp wrapped
in a green cloth. It was a beautiful golden harp, and when Thorin
struck it the music began all at once, so sudden and sweet that Bilbo
forgot everything else, and was swept away into dark lands under
strange moons, far over The Water and very far from his hobbit-hole
under The Hill.
The dark came into the room from the little window that
opened in the side of The Hill; the firelight flickered—it was April—
and still they played on, while the shadow of Gandalf's beard wagged
against the wall.
The dark filled all the room, and the fire died down, and the
shadows were lost, and still they played on. And suddenly first one
and then another began to sing as they played, deep-throated singing
of the dwarves in the deep places of their ancient homes; and this is
like a fragment of their song, if it can be like their song without
their music.
Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away ere break of day
To seek the pale enchanted gold.

The dwarves of yore made mighty spells,
While hammers fell like ringing bells
In places deep, where dark things sleep,
In hollow halls beneath the fells.

For ancient king and elvish lord
There many a gleaming golden hoard
They shaped and wrought, and light they caught
To hide in gems on hilt of sword.

On silver necklaces they strung
The flowering stars, on crowns they hung
The dragon-fire, in twisted wire
They meshed the light of moon and sun.

Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away, ere break of day,
To claim our long-forgotten gold.

Goblets they carved there for themselves
And harps of gold; where no man delves
There lay they long, and many a song
Was sung unheard by men or elves.

The pines were roaring on the height,
The winds were moaning in the night.
The fire was red, it flaming spread;
The trees like torches blazed with light.

The bells were ringing in the dale
And men looked up with faces pale;
Then dragon's ire more fierce than fire
Laid low their towers and houses frail.

The mountain smoked beneath the moon;
The dwarves, they heard the tramp of doom.
They fled their hall to dying fall
Beneath his feet, beneath the moon.

Far over the misty mountains grim
To dungeons deep and caverns dim
We must away, ere break of day,
To win our harps and gold from him!
As they sang the hobbit felt the love of beautiful things
made by hands and by cunning and by magic moving through him, a
fierce and a jealous love, the desire of the hearts of dwarves. Then
something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the
great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and
explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick. He
looked out of the window. The stars were out in a dark sky above the
trees. He thought of the jewels of the dwarves shining in dark
caverns. Suddenly in the wood beyond The Water a flame leapt up—
probably somebody lighting a wood-fire—and he thought of plundering
dragons settling on his quiet Hill and kindling it all to flames. He
shuddered; and very quickly he was plain Mr. Baggins of Bag-End,
Under-Hill, again.
He got up trembling. He had less than half a mind to fetch
the lamp, and more than half a mind to pretend to, and go and hide
behind the beer-barrels in the cellar, and not come out again until
all the dwarves had gone away. Suddenly he found that the music and
the singing had stopped, and they were all looking at him with eyes
shining in the dark.
"Where are you going?" said Thorin, in a tone that seemed to
show that he guessed both halves of the hobbit's mind.
"What about a little light?" said Bilbo apologetically.
"We like the dark," said all the dwarves. "Dark for dark
business! There are many hours before dawn."
"Of course!" said Bilbo, and sat down in a hurry. He missed
the stool and sat in the fender, knocking over the poker and shovel
with a crash.
"Hush!" said Gandalf. "Let Thorin speak!" And this is how
Thorin began.
"Gandalf, dwarves and Mr. Baggins! We are met together in the
house of our friend and fellow conspirator, this most excellent and
audacious hobbit—may the hair on his toes never fall out! all praise
to his wine and ale! He paused for breath and for a polite remark
from the hobbit, but the compliments were quite lost on poor Bilbo
Baggins, who was wagging his mouth in protest at being called
audacious and worst of all fellow conspirator, though no noise came
out, he was so flummoxed. So Thorin went on:
"We are met to discuss our plans, our ways, means, policy and
devices. We shall soon before the break of day start on our long
journey, a journey from which some of us, or perhaps all of us
(except our friend and counsellor, the ingenious wizard Gandalf) may
never return. It is a solemn moment. Our object is, I take it, well
known to us all. To the estimable Mr. Baggins, and perhaps to one or
two of the younger dwarves (I think I should be right in naming Kili
and Fili, for instance), the exact situation at the moment may
require a little brief explanation—"
This was Thorin's style. He was an important dwarf. If he had
been allowed, he would probably have gone on like this until he was
out of breath, without telling any one there anything that was not
known already. But he was rudely interrupted. Poor Bilbo couldn't
bear it any longer. At may never return he began to feel a shriek
coming up inside, and very soon it burst out like the whistle of an
engine coming out of a tunnel. All the dwarves sprang up, knocking
over the table. Gandalf struck a blue light on the end of his magic
staff, and in its firework glare the poor little hobbit could be seen
kneeling on the hearth-rug, shaking like a jelly that was melting.
Then he fell flat on the floor, and kept on calling out "struck by
lightning, struck by lightning!" over and over again; and that was
all they could get out of him for a long time. So they took him and
laid him out of the way on the drawing-room sofa with a drink at his
elbow, and they went back to their dark business.
"Excitable little fellow," said Gandalf, as they sat down
again. "Gets funny queer fits, but he is one of the best, one of the
best—as fierce as a dragon in a pinch."
If you have ever seen a dragon in a pinch, you will realize
that this was only poetical exaggeration applied to any hobbit, even
to Old Took's great-grand-uncle Bullroarer, who was so huge (for a
hobbit) that he could ride a horse. He charged the ranks of the
goblins of Mount Gram in the Battle of the Green Fields, and knocked
their king Golfimbul's head clean off with a wooden club. It sailed a
hundred yards through the air and went down a rabbit-hole, and in
this way the battle was won and the game of Golf invented at the same
moment.
In the meanwhile, however, Bullroarer's gentler descendant
was reviving in the drawing-room. After a while and a drink he crept
nervously to the door of the parlour. This is what he heard, Gloin
speaking: "Humph!" (or some snort more or less like that). "Will he
do, do you think? It is all very well for Gandalf to talk about this
hobbit being fierce, but one shriek like that in a moment of
excitement would be enough to wake the dragon and all his relatives,
and kill the lot of us. I think it sounded more like fright than
excitement! In fact, if it had not been for the sign on the door, I
should have been sure we had come to the wrong house. As soon as I
clapped eyes on the little fellow bobbing and puffing on the mat, I
had my doubts. He looks more like a grocer than a burglar!"
Then Mr. Baggins turned the handle and went in. The Took side
had won. He suddenly felt he would go without bed and breakfast to be
thought fierce. As for little fellow bobbing on the mat it almost
made him really fierce. Many a time afterwards the Baggins part
regretted what he did now, and he said to himself: "Bilbo, you were a
fool; you walked right in and put your foot in it."
"Pardon me," he said, "if I have overheard words that you
were saying. I don't pretend to understand what you are talking
about, or your reference to burglars, but I think I am right in
believing" (this is what he called being on his dignity) "that you
think I am no good. I will show you. I have no signs on my door—it
was painted a week ago—, and I am quite sure you have come to the
wrong house. As soon as I saw your funny faces on

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations x
Note on the Text xi
Author's Note 1
I. An Unexpected Party 3
II. Roast Mutton 32
III. A Short Rest 51
IV. Over Hill and Under Hill 61
V. Riddles in the Dark 76
VI. Out of the Frying-Pan into the Fire 100
VII. Queer Lodgings 123
VIII. Flies and Spiders 153
IX. Barrels Out of Bond 185
X. A Warm Welcome 205
XI. On the Doorstep 219
XII. Inside Information 230
XIII. Not at Home 253
XIV. Fire and Water 266
XV. The Gathering of the Clouds 277
XVI. A Thief in the Night 289
XVII. The Clouds Burst 296
XVIII. The Return Journey 310
XIX. The Last Stage 320
Chapter 1 of The Fellowship of the Ring, Book One of The Lord of the Rings A Long-Expected Party 333
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2003

    THE GREATEST ADVENTURE EVER

    J.R.R Tolkien tells a wonderful tale about a little hobbit who is at first self-centered and his transition to become a respectable hobbit among his friends. This book would be perfect for those who like fantasy and adventure. Tolkien creates a fantasy world that seems so real. If you have enjoyed watching The Lord of the Rings movies, you would like The Hobbit. This book is a prelude to The Lord of the Ring, and it gives you better understanding of the creatures that live in Middle Earth and what the trilogy is about. I want to thank my aunt for introducing me to this great book. Without her encouragement I would had never learn the importance of reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2003

    Ranting...

    Apparently Miss '!~Namarie~*' can barely write in English, let alone Elvish... I haven't used this journal, but I can't picture Sam using it either. I do hate it when people fabricate things under the name of others...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2002

    Its pure "Tolkien like!"

    Oh, My gosh! I resived this wunderful jurnal from my grandparents for Chrstmas and it is really beautyful!! I can't wait to fill the decorated pages with all my poems, litte saying and qotes from my favorte movie and book siries, LOTR! I highly recomend this beautyful jurnal for any Tolkin lover!~Namarie~*feal tinu*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2001

    Beautiful

    This is really an amazing journal...i write poetry and the illistrations in this book are breathtaking! i suggest you buy this if you enjoy writting.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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