Hobbitses, rejoice! Today is Hobbit Day, which means that it’s the birthday of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins. Bilbo Baggins is one of my favorite literary characters of all time. His bravery, loyalty, keenness for adventure, quirkiness, and good-natured humor is admirable. He passed these traits, including his sense of adventure and heroism, to Frodo, his relation and heir. Both characters are worth celebrating!
Another event worth celebrating is that yesterday, September 21, was the 80th anniversary of The Hobbit.
To celebrate both occasions, here are some of my favorite quotes from Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit:
“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.”
“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.
“I will give you a name,” he said to it, “and I shall call you Sting.” -Bilbo
“Never laugh at live dragons, Bilbo you fool!” -Bilbo
“If ever you are passing my way,” said Bilbo, “don’t wait to knock! Tea is at four; but any of you are welcome at any time!” -Bilbo
“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.” -Bilbo
And just one more for fun…
“He [Bilbo] used often to say there was only one Road; that it was like a great river: its springs were at every doorstep, and every path was its tributary. ‘It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out of your door,’ he used to say. ‘You step into the Road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to.’ . . .”
-Frodo, The Fellowship of the Ring
Did I miss any? What are some of your favorite hobbit quotes?
Want to hear an interesting fact? Tolkien rewrote the chapter Riddles in the Dark when the book was republished. In the first edition of “The Hobbit” Gollum was more than willing to part with his ring of power if Bilbo won the riddle game. When Gollum couldn’t find the ring, he still shows Bilbo out of the cave. However, when Tolkien began writing “The Lord of the Rings,” he knew the account of a corrupting ring didn’t jive well with his original first edition of “The Hobbit.” To fix this, on the second edition Tolkien changed Gollum to be more aggressive to show the corrupting influence of the ring, as well as Gollum not wanting to part with it. OK. I know it’s not a quote. But I thought it was interesting enough to share anyway.
Hi Jonathan! We seem to have some common interests here—and I did not know this! Thank goodness he changed Gollum to the character he is now. Such an incredible author and incredible books! 🙂