“Fair lady!” said Frodo again after a while. “Tell me, if my asking does not seem foolish, who is Tom Bombadil?”

“He is, as you have seen him, she said in answer to his look. He is the Master of wood, water, and hill.”

When Tom Bombadil first appeared in The Fellowship of the Ring, — stumping along with great yellow boots on his thick legs — he stirred an almost endless round of debates and discussions. Tolkien fans of all ages and walks of life have wondered about this strange person with his blue coat and a long brown beard, bright blue eyes and face as red as a ripe apple. Controversy seems to swirl around him like smoke rings.

Many love him, others dislike or disdain him, Peter Jackson ignored him almost completely, but few seem to have this enigmatic character all figured out. Who is Tom Bombadil? What are his abilities and powers? Where did he come from? Why is Tom unaffected by the One Ring? Why did Tolkien decide to include this fanciful character in his epic work? Who or what might he symbolize? These and many other questions will be discussed, debated and delighted in if you join us this week in #thehalloffire as we look at Tom Bombadil.

Suggested reading –

FOTR chapters 6, 7 and 8
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil
Stueard Jensen’s essay on Tom http://tolkien.slimy.com/essays/Bombadil.html


Upcoming topics:

10/16/04, 10/17/04: “The Hobbit: Chapter 16: A Thief in the Night ”
10/23/04, 10/24/04: “Political Systems in Middle Earth”
10/30/04, 10/31/04: “The Nazgul/Ringwraiths”


#thehalloffire on theonering.net IRC server. Need instructions? Go here:

Chat Times:

Saturday Chat:
5:30pm EST (17:30)
[also 11:30pm (23:30) CET and 7:30am Sunday morning AEST]

Sunday Chat:
8:00 pm (20:00) CET
[also 2:00pm (14:00) EST and 4:00am Monday morning AEST]

EST = Eastern Time, USA’s East Coast
CET = Central European Time, Central Europe
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