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A typical hobbit library would be full of books on genealogy, food and drink, and the growing of pipe weed and other important plants. A broad and well-stocked library would also include the writings of those hobbits who are famous throughout Middle Earth.
Bilbo Baggins (TA 2890 - TA 3021)
Bilbo Baggins wrote about his expedition to Erebor with Thorin and his company of dwarves in the Red Book of Westmarch. His Translations from the Elvish were added to the Red Book.
He also wrote many poems. One poem, called Errantry, is a cyclical narrative poem found in the Red Book of Westmarch. Hobbits liked these kinds of stories. The example was made by Bilbo Baggins early in her career as a writer and mimics the Elvish style, although it is not Elvish. The names in the poem, such as the country of Belmarie, are inspired by Elvish names. The content of the poem may include references to Earendil and the Dunedain of Numenor. The poem was written soon after TA 2941 and is similar in feel to the one he created at Rivendell.
There was a merry passenger,
a messenger, a mariner:
he built a gilded gondola
to wander in, and had in her
a load of yellow oranges
and porridge for his provender;
he perfumed her with marjoram
and cardamon and lavender....
Another poem, written in Rivendell around TA 3018, focused on the life of Earendil. It began:
Earendil was a mariner
that tarried in Arvernien;
he built a boat of timber felled
in Nimbrethil to journey in;
her sails he wove of silver fair,
of silver were her lanters made,
her prow was fashioned like a swan,
and light upon her banners laid.
Bilbo also wrote many walking songs, which he taught to Frodo. One song, set to an ancient tune, went:
Upon the hearth the fire is red,
Beneath the roof there is a bed;
But not yet weary are our feet,
Still round the corner we may meet
A sudden tree or standing stone
That none have seen but we alone.
Tree and flower and leaf and grass,
Let them pass! Let them pass!
Hill and water under sky,
Pass them by! Pass them by!
Still round the corner there may wait
A new road or a secret gate,
And though we pass them by today,
Tomorrow we may come this way
And take the hidden paths that run
Towards the Moon or to the Sun.
Apple, thorn, and nut and sloe,
Let them go! Let them go!
Sand and stone and pool and dwell,
Fare you well! Fare you well!
Home is behind, the world ahead,
And there are many paths to tread
Through shadows to the edge of night,
Until the stars are all alight.
Then world behind and home ahead,
We'll wander back to home and bed.
Mist and twilight, cloud and shade,
Away shall fade! Away shall fade!
Fire and lamp, and meat and bread,
And then to bed! And then to bed!
Bilbo also wrote, The Man in the Moon Stayed Up Too Late:
There is an inn, a merry old inn
beneath an old grey hill,
And there they brew a beer so brown
That the Man in the Moon himself came down
one night to drink his fill...
Frodo Baggins (TA 2968 - TA 3021)
Frodo Baggins added to Bilbo's diary and wrote his account of the War of the Rings from Shire Reckoning 1420- 1421. Despite having a good voice, he wrote few songs. One of the few songs he wrote was a lament for Gandalf that he composed in Lothlorien:
When evening in the Shire was grey
his footsteps on the Hill were heard;
before the dawn he went away
on journey long without a word.
From Wilderland to Western Shore,
from northern waste to southern hill,
through dragon-lair and hidden door
and darkling woods he walked at will.
With Dwarf and Hobbit, Elves and Men,
with mortal and immortal folk,
with bird on bough and beast in den,
in their own secret tongues he spoke.
A deadly sword, a healing hand,
a back that bent beneath its load;
a trumpet-voice, a burning brand,
a weary pilgrim on the road.
A lord of wisdom throned he sat,
swift in anger, quick to laugh;
an old man in a battered hat
who leaned upon a thorny staff.
He stood upon the bridge alone
and Fire and Shadow both defied;
his staff was broken on the stone,
in Khazad-dum his wisdom died.
Meriadoc Brandybuck (TA 2982 - FO 65)
He is best known in the Shire for Herblore of the Shire and Reckoning of Years, which compares the calendars of the Shire with those of Breem Rivendell, Gondor, and Rohan. He also wrote Old Words and Names in the Shire which showed the relationship between Hobbitish and the old language of Rohan. He also wrote some books on Eriador and the history of Rohan.
Samwise Gamgee (TA 2980 - FO 82)
Samwise Gamgee added pages to the Red Book of Westmarch. He also wrote many poems, including his version of an older traditional Shire poem,The Cat.
The fat cat on the mat
may seem to dream
of nice mice that suffice
for him, or cream;
but he free, maybe,
walks in thought
unbowed, proud, where loud
roared and fought
his kin, lean and slim,
or deep in den
in the East feasted on beasts
and tender men.
The giant lion with iron
claw in paw,
and huge ruthless tooth
in gory jaw;
the pard dark-starred,
feet upon feet,
that oft soft from aloft
leaps on his meat
where woods loom in gloom -
far now they be,
fierce and free,
and tamed is he;
but fat cat on the mat
kept as a pet,
he does not forget.
He wrote one song in the Tower of Cirith Ungol that went as follows:
In western lands beneath the Sun
the flowers may rise in Spring,
the trees may bud, the waters run,
the merry finches sing.
Or there maybe 'tis cloudless night
and swaying beeches bear
the Elven-stars as jewels white
amid their branching hair.
Though here at journey's end I lie
in darkness buried deep,
beyond all towers strong and high,
beyond all mountains steep,
above all shadows rides the Sun
and Stars for ever dwell;
I will not say the Day is done,
nor bid the Stars farewell.
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