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Bilbo Baggins

Bilbo

Home(s)
Language(s)
People
time period
Born 22 September, Third Age 2890, died early Fourth Age
Gender
Male


Bilbo Baggins of Bag End Underhill, the adventuring Hobbit, was born in the Shire. He had a strong strain of Fallohide blood running in him, and developed the corresponding love for adventure, Elves, and Elvish things.

The owner of Bag End, in Hobbiton, Bilbo was the son of the staid Bungo Baggins and the adventurous Belladonna Took. He existed quietly for most of his life, living off his late parents' considerable fortune, supplemented with freelance work as a scrivener and tutor for illiterate hobbits and rent from the inhabitants of Bagshot Row further down the Hill. This changed when Gandalf convinced him to serve as Thorin and Company's burglar in TA. 2941. On this adventure, Bilbo first visited Rivendell and many other legendary places in Middle-earth (including Goblin-gate, Thranduil's palace in Mirkwood, and Erebor). He played an important part in the slaying of the Dragon Smaug, most chiefly by noticing the weak spot in the Worm's underbelly where Bard later was able to land his deadly black arrow. But most importantly, Bilbo was led by fate to discover Sauron's long lost One Ring in Gollum's cave in the depths of the Misty Mountains, beneath the lairs of the Goblins of the High Pass. Following his adventures he was able to live comfortably in the Shire on his portion of the Dragon-hoard.

In T.A. 2980, he adopted his young relative Frodo after the death of Frodo's parents, Drogo and Primula Baggins. (For the sake of convenience, Frodo was referred to as Bilbo's nephew. In actuality, Primula Took is Bilbo's first cousin and Drogo is his second cousin; Frodo is therefore Bilbo's first and second cousin, once removed either way.) They lived together in Bag End for many years, with Bilbo occasionally teaching letters to poorer hobbitlings in the area, including young Samwise Gamgee.

In T.A. 3001, with a dramatic exit, Bilbo left the Shire during Frodo's thirty-third birthday party (and Bilbo's own eleventy-first), a party which Bilbo called the Farewell Feast. At this time, Bilbo's possessions, including the awesome One Ring, came into Frodo's hands. Bilbo remained in Rivendell for the next twenty years, except for visits to Dale and Erebor in either T.A. 3001 or 3002. During this time Bilbo devoted himself to writing, poetry, song-making, and scholarly work. Some of the significant works among these are the first part of the Red Book of Westmarch, entitled There and Back Again, edited by J.R.R. Tolkien as The Hobbit; the poems "Errantry" and its epic reworking (with help from Aragorn), "The Lay of Eärendil"; and the great scholarly piece entitled Translations From the Elvish, the basis for The Silmarilion. These works credit Bilbo as the greatest of all Hobbitish scholars.

When Bilbo passed over the sea in T.A, 3021 with the Last Riding of the Keepers of the Ring, he was the oldest Hobbit who had ever lived, at 131 years and 8 days (with the exception of Gollum). He presumably passed away in comfort in Tol Eressëa sometime later. He is remembered as much for his extreme generosity, self-deprecation, and scholarship as he is for his exploits and accomplishments.

Important Dates

born T.A. 2890
Thorin & Company T.A. 2941
the Farewell Party T.A. 3001
passing over the sea T.A. 3021.

Bilbo's Principal Items

References

  • MERP:Lords of Middle-earth Vol III: Hobbits, Dwarves, Ents, Orcs & Trolls
  • MERP: Middle-earth Adventure Guidebook II
  • MERP: The Shire
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