The Hobbit Quotes

The Hobbit is the first published work by J.R.R. Tolkien. While it is the beginning of a story which later continues in The Lord of the Rings (3 volumes), it is also a complete story on its own. I have read this book already several times and have noted down from each chapter some phrases and quotes that I liked best and that represent the general atmosphere of the book.

If you didn’t read The Hobbit yet, this collection of quotes will hopefully make you curious enough to do it.

Chapter 1 – An Unexpected Party

How it begins: 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, not 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.
The map: On the table in the light of a big lamp with a red shade he spread a piece of parchment rather like a map.
About the dragon: There was a most special greedy, strong and wicked worm called Smaug.

Chapter 2 – Roast Mutton

Near the trolls: Not far away were dreary hills, rising higher and higher, dark with trees. On some of them were old castles with an evil look, as if they had been built by wicked people.

Chapter 3 – A Short Rest

About Elrond: He was as noble and fair in face as an elf-lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer.
Moon-letters on the map: "Stand by the grey stone when the thrush knocks, and the setting sun with the last light of Durin’s Day will shine upon the keyhole."

Chapter 4 – Over Hill and Under Hill

Thorin: "There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something." …
… You certainly usually find something if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.
About goblins: The yells and yammering, croaking, jibbering and jabbering; howls, growls and curses; shrieking and skriking, that followed were beyond description. Several hundred wild cats and wolves being roasted slowly alive together would not have compared with it.

Chapter 5 – Riddles in the Dark

About Gollum: Deep down here by the dark water lived old Gollum, a small slimy creature. I don’t know where he came from, nor who or what he was. He was Gollum – as dark as darkness, except for two big round pale eyes in his thin face.
Gollum: "Bless us and splash us, my preciousss!"
Gollum: "Sssss," …. "Praps ye sits here and chats with it a bitsy, my preciousss. It like riddles, praps it does, does it?"
Gollum: "Is it nice, my preciousss? Is it juicy? Is it scumptiously crunchable?"
About Gollum: Though he was only a black shadow in the gleam of his own eyes, Bilbo could see or feel that he was tense as a bowstring, gathered for a spring.

Chapter 6 – Out of the Frying-Pan into the Fire

About the eagles: The Lord of the Eagles of the Misty Mountains had eyes that could look at the sun unblinking, and could see a rabbit moving on the ground a mile below even in the moonlight.
About the wargs: Maddened and angry they were leaping and howling round the trunks, and cursing the dwarves in their horrible language, with their tongues hanging out, and their eyes shining as red and fierce as the flames.

Chapter 7 – Queer Lodgings

About the bees of Beorn: There was a buzzing and a whirring and a droning in the air. Bees were busy everywhere. And such bees! Bilbo had never seen anything like them. … They were bigger than hornets. The drones were bigger than your thumb, a good deal, and the band of yellow on their deep black bodies shone like fiery gold.
About Beorn: Standing near was a huge man with a thick black beard and hair, and great bare arms and legs with knotted muscles. He was clothed in a tunic of wool down to his knees, and was leaning on a large axe.
About honey and mead: At last Gandalf pushed away his plate and jug – he had eaten two whole loaves (with masses of butter and honey and clotted cream) and drunk at least a quart of mead – and he took out his pipe. No smoking

Chapter 8 – Flies and Spiders

About the forest: The nastiest things they saw were the cobwebs: dark dense cobwebs with threads extraordinarily thick, often stretched from tree to tree, or tangled in the lower branches on either side of them.
Bilbo on top of a tree: The sun was shining brilliantly, and it was a long while before he could bear it. When he could, he saw all round him a sea of dark green, ruffled here and there by the breeze; and there were everywhere hundreds of butterflies.
About Bilbo He beat the creature off with his hands – it was trying to poison him to keep him quiet, as small spiders do to flies – until he remembered his sword and drew it out.
About Bilbo Somehow the killing of a giant spider, all alone by himself in the dark without the help of a wizard or the dwarves or anyone else, made a great difference to Mr. Baggins. He felt a different person, and much fiercer and bolder in spite of an empty stomach as he wiped his sword on the grass and put it back into its sheath.
"I will give you a name," he said to it, "and I shall call you Sting."

Chapter 9 – Barrels Out of Bond

About the dwarves: … their small knives, the only weapons they had, would have been of no use against the arrows of the elves that could hit a bird’s eye in the dark.

Chapter 10 – A Warm Welcome

Thorin: "I am Thorin son of Thrain son of Thror King under the Mountain!"
Part of a song about the King under the Mountain: The King beneath the mountains,
The King of carven stone,
The lord of silver fountains
Shall come into his own!

Chapter 11 – On the Doorstep

About the Desolation of the Dragon: Nothing moved in the waste, save the vapour and the water, and every now and again a black and ominous crow. The only sound was the sound of the stony water, and every now and again the harsh croak of a bird. Balin shuddered.
Durin's Day: Then Thorin stepped up and drew the key on its chain from round his neck. He put it to the hole. It fitted and it turned! Snap! The gleam went out, the sun sank, the moon was gone, and evening sprang into the sky.

Chapter 12 – Inside Information

Bilbo: "… ‘Every worm has his weak spot’, as my father used to say, though I am sure it was not from personal experience."
Smaug: "My armour is like tenfold shields, my teeth are swords, my claws spears, the shock of my tail a thunderbolt, my wings a hurricane, and my breath death!"
Bilbo: "Never laugh at live dragons, Bilbo you fool!" he said to himself, and it became a favourite saying of his later, and passed into a proverb.

Chapter 13 – Not at Home

About Thorin: Royal indeed did Thorin look, clad in a coat of gold-plated rings, with a silver-hafted axe in a belt crusted with scarlet stones.

Chapter 14 – Fire and Water

About Smaug: With a shriek that deafened men, felled trees and split stone, Smaug shot spouting into the air, turned over and crashed down from on high in ruin.

Chapter 15 – The Gathering of the Clouds

Part of a song by the dwarves:: Under the Mountain dark and tall
the King has come unto his hall!
His foe is dead, the Worm of Dread,
And ever so his foes shall fall.

Chapter 16 – A Thief in the Night

About the Arkenstone: It was as if a globe had been filled with moonlight and hung before them in a net woven of the glint of frosty stars.

Chapter 17 – The Clouds Burst

About the dwarves of Dain: Each one of his folk was clad in a hauberk of steel mail that hung to his knees, and his legs were covered with hose of a fine and flexible metal mesh, …
In battle they wielded heavy two-handed mattocks; but each of them had also a short broad sword at his side and a round shield slung at his back. Their beards were forked and plaited and thrust into their belts. Their caps were of iron and they were shod with iron, and their faces were grim.

Chapter 18 – The Return Journey

Thorin: "There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom, blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. But sad or merry, I must leave it now. Farewell!"
Gandalf: "Farewell! O Elvenking! … Merry be the greenwood, while the world is yet young! And merry be all your folk!"
Elvenking "Farewell! O Gandalf! … May you ever appear where you are most needed and least expected!"

Chapter 19 – The Last Stage

Part of a song by the elves: The stars are far brighter
Than gems without measure
The moon is far whiter
Than silver in treasure:
The fire is more shining
On hearth in the glooming,
Than gold won by mining,
So why go a-roaming?

O! Tra-la-la-lally
Come back to the valley.

Gandalf and Bilbo in The End: "You are a fine person, Mr Baggins, and I am very fond of you; but you are only quite a little fellow in a wide world after all!"
"Thank goodness!" said Bilbo laughing, and handed him the tobacco-jar. No smoking

Cover of The Hobbit
My worn-out copy of The Hobbit

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