J. R. R tolkien The Hobbit or There and Back Again icon

J. R. R tolkien The Hobbit or There and Back Again

НазваниеJ. R. R tolkien The Hobbit or There and Back Again
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1. /TEXT/The_Fellowship_of_the_Ring.rtf
2. /TEXT/The_Hobbit__eng.rtf
3. /TEXT/The_Hobbit_or_There_and_Back_Again.rtf
4. /TEXT/The_Lord_of_the_Rings__eng.rtf
5. /TEXT/The_Return_of_the_King.rtf
6. /TEXT/The_Silmarillion.rtf
7. /TEXT/The_Two_Towers.rtf
Р. Р. Толкиен хранители (властелин колец. Летопись первая) предисловие автора эта сказка
J. R. R tolkien The Hobbit or There and Back Again
Дж. Р. Р. Толкиен хоббит, или туда и обратно
J. R. R tolkien The Lord of the Rings
Книга пятая
Дж. Р. Р. Толкиен и Кристофер Толкиен сильмариллион
Р. Р. Толкиен две башни (властелин колец. Летопись вторая) книга

J.R.R Tolkien

The Hobbit or There and Back Again

In this reprint several minor inaccuracies, most of them noted by

readers, have been corrected. For example, the text on pages 32 and 62

now corresponds exactly with the runes on Thror's Map. More important

is the matter of Chapter Five. There the true story of the ending of

the Riddle Game, as it was eventually revealed (under pressure) by

Bilbo to Gandalf, is now given according to the Red Book, in place of

the version Bilbo first gave to his friends, and actually set down in

his diary. This departure from truth on the part of a most honest

hobbit was a portent of great significance. It does not, however,

concern the present story, and those who in this edition make their

first acquaintance with hobbit-lore need not troupe about it. Its

explanation lies in the history of the Ring, as it was set out in the

chronicles of the Red Book of Westmarch, and is now told in The Lord

of the Rings.

A final note may be added, on a point raised by several students

of the lore of the period. On Thror's Map is written Here of old was

Thrain King under the Mountain; yet Thrain was the son of Thror, the

last King under the Mountain before the coming of the dragon. The Map,

however, is not in error. Names are often repeated in dynasties, and

the genealogies show that a distant ancestor of Thror was referred to,

Thrain I, a fugitive from Moria, who first discovered the Lonely

Mountain, Erebor, and ruled there for a while, before his people moved

on to the remoter mountains of the North.

Chapter I

An Unexpected Party


n 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, 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 at 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 fabulous 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

hobbit-like 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 makeup 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


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 I 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 business 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 a 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?" be said. "Do you wish me a good morning, or

mean that it is a good morning whether I want not; or that you feel

good this morning; or that it is 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


"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


"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 begin 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!" she 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, land that is not without hope.

Indeed for your old grand-father 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 seen rude. Wizards

after all are wizards.

"What on earth did I ask him to tea for!" he said to him-self, as

he went to the pantry. He had only just had break fast, 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 of 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 escape 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 '?a 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 a 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!" 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 to the 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 around 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. "Be-sides, 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, t was FIVE. Another dwarf had come along while he was

wondering in the hall. He had hardly turned the knob, be-x)re 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 bad 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


"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
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