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The Text Tale of Frodo the Nine-fingered: Residual Oral Patterning in The Lord of the Rings

The Text Tale of Frodo the Nine-fingered: Residual Oral Patterning in The Lord of the Rings The Text Tale of Frodo Nine-fingered: Residual Oral Patterning in The Lord of the Rings MARIA PROZESKY he world of Middle-earth first opened to public view in 1937 when TThe Hobbit appeared, with its famous first line, echoing its title: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.…” This line brings readers immediately into the presence of a member of one of the most famous invented races in all of English literature, who is about to be swept into a vast and fantastic adventure, carrying readers with him. This particular hobbit, Bilbo, is characterized as a rather quaint, bookish Edwardian Englishman of retiring habits who is fond of good food and good to- bacco, of beer and comfortable slippers. He also has literary tendencies; in The Hobbit he is said to be fond of “runes and letters and cunning handwriting, through when he [writes] himself it [is] a bit thin and spi- dery” (H, III, 95), and by the end of The Lord of the Rings he has developed into a historian and scholar, responsible for large sections of the Red Book of Westmarch (FR, Prologue, 23-24). In this he is like the other inhabitants of the http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Tolkien Studies West Virginia University Press

The Text Tale of Frodo the Nine-fingered: Residual Oral Patterning in The Lord of the Rings

Tolkien Studies , Volume 3 – May 9, 2006

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Publisher
West Virginia University Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 West Virginia University Press.
ISSN
1547-3163

Abstract

The Text Tale of Frodo Nine-fingered: Residual Oral Patterning in The Lord of the Rings MARIA PROZESKY he world of Middle-earth first opened to public view in 1937 when TThe Hobbit appeared, with its famous first line, echoing its title: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.…” This line brings readers immediately into the presence of a member of one of the most famous invented races in all of English literature, who is about to be swept into a vast and fantastic adventure, carrying readers with him. This particular hobbit, Bilbo, is characterized as a rather quaint, bookish Edwardian Englishman of retiring habits who is fond of good food and good to- bacco, of beer and comfortable slippers. He also has literary tendencies; in The Hobbit he is said to be fond of “runes and letters and cunning handwriting, through when he [writes] himself it [is] a bit thin and spi- dery” (H, III, 95), and by the end of The Lord of the Rings he has developed into a historian and scholar, responsible for large sections of the Red Book of Westmarch (FR, Prologue, 23-24). In this he is like the other inhabitants of the

Journal

Tolkien StudiesWest Virginia University Press

Published: May 9, 2006

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