The Shire

The Shire is a region of J. R. R. Tolkien‘s fictional Middle-earth, described in The Lord of the Rings and other works. The Shire is an inland area settled exclusively by hobbits, the Shire-folk, largely sheltered from the goings-on in the rest of Middle-earth. It is in the northwest of the continent, in the region of Eriador and the Kingdom of Arnor. The Shire is the scene of action at the beginning and end of Tolkien’s The Hobbit, and of the sequel, The Lord of the Rings. Five of the protagonists in these stories have their homeland in the Shire: Bilbo Baggins (the title character of The Hobbit), and four members of the Fellowship of the Ring: Frodo Baggins, Sam Gamgee, Merry Brandybuck and Pippin Took. The main action in The Lord of the Rings returns to the Shire near the end of the book, in ‘The Scouring of the Shire‘, when the homebound hobbits find the area under the control of Saruman‘s ruffians, and set things to rights. Tolkien based the Shire’s landscapes, climate, flora, fauna, and placenames on rural England where he lived, first in Worcestershire as a boy, then in Oxfordshire. … Tolkien took considerable trouble over the exact details of the Shire. Little of his carefully crafted fictional geography, history, calendar, and constitution appeared in The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings, though additional details were given in the Appendices of later editions. The Tolkien scholar Tom Shippey comments that all the same, they provided the ‘depth’, the feeling in the reader’s mind that this was a real and complex place, a quality that Tolkien believed essential to a successful fantasy. In Tolkien’s fiction, the Shire is described as a small but beautiful, idyllic and fruitful land, beloved by its hobbit inhabitants. They had agriculture but were not industrialized. The landscape included downland and woods like the English countryside. The Shire was fully inland; most hobbits feared the Sea. …”
W – The Shire
W – The Scouring of the Shire
W – Old Forest

Sketch map of the Shire

About 1960s: Days of Rage

Bill Davis - 1960s: Days of Rage
This entry was posted in Books and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s