Ah, story time…
Gandalf continues the story of how Gollum possessed the ring, and how he was banished by his family. He lived alone in the hills for a while, until he grew to hate the sunshine, when he followed a stream into a cave in the Misty Mountains. Frodo is appalled at Gollum, and the fact that he was related to hobbits. Gandalf remarks that he actually is quite similar to everyday hobbits, as was evidenced by how he and Bilbo understood each other. They communicated well, and knew the same riddles, passed down throughout the ages. Frodo adds, however, that Gollum meant to kill Bilbo through trickery the whole time.
Gandalf does say that he thinks the story of Gollum is rather sad, so I FEEL VALIDATED.
So yes, Gollum and Bilbo understood each other. If you really think about it, what are the chances that Bilbo and some random mountain creature would get along enough to play a game of riddles? That’s how you know Gollum must have been related to hobbits. They’re on the same level. Even if Gollum was just trying to kill Bilbo the whole time, they spoke the same language, both literally and metaphorically.
And, this is interesting: the “Sun” (which Tolkien capitalizes, among other things) is female. Not sure if this will ever come into play again, and we could have a discussion of why Tolkien would make the sun female, but Gollum at least (or maybe Gandalf, as he’s the one telling the story) recognizes the sun as “her”. It will be very interesting if different characters refer to the sun in terms of different genders, which would say something about each individual, group, or even race. We can make those connections if we start to see a pattern, but again, I don’t know if this will ever come up again. It’s interesting for now.
There’s not a whole lot more to talk about today. It’s kind of a dead page compared to the last few we’ve done.
If you’re bored and looking for a Lord of the Rings-related challenge, play the “Tolkien: Human, Elf, or Dwarf?” quiz over at Sporcle.com. It’s going to be way harder than you think.
“‘But there was something…'”