The Hobbit, or, There and Back Again
by J.R.R. Tolkien
Loyalty Quotes in The Hobbit, or, There and Back Again
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
I am betrayed [...] It was rightly guessed that I could not forbear to redeem the Arkenstone, the treasure of my house. For it I will give one fourteenth share of the hoard in silver and gold, setting aside the gems; but that shall be accounted the promised share of this traitor, and with that reward he shall depart, and you can divide it as you will. He will get little enough, I doubt not. Take him, if you wish him to live; and no friendship of mine goes with him. (17.19)
Thorin, of course, only sees that Bilbo has taken the Arkenstone from him – he doesn't see Bilbo's larger effort to keep the peace. Without the drastic intervention of the Battle of Five Armies, do you think Thorin could ever have forgiven Bilbo for what he tried? Why do none of the dwarves, some of whom feel pity and shame watching Bilbo go, stand up for him?
Then Bilbo turned away, and he went by himself, and sat alone wrapped in a blanket, and, whether you believe it or not, he wept until his eyes were red and his voice was hoarse. He was a kindly little soul. Indeed it was long before he had the heart to make a joke again. "A mercy it is," he said at last to himself, "that I woke up when I did. I wish Thorin were living, but I am glad that we parted in kindness. You are a fool, Bilbo Baggins, and you made a great mess of that business with the stone; and there was a battle, in spite of all your efforts to buy peace and quiet, but I suppose you can hardly be blamed for that." (18.20)
After Thorin dies, Bilbo weeps "until his eyes were red and his voice was hoarse." But why does the narrator doubt "whether you [will] believe it or not?" Does Bilbo's crying over Thorin's death seem surprising or out of character to you? As a reader, did you feel anything during Thorin's death scene? Whom do we feel loyalty to in this book – just the titular hobbit? Do any of the other characters come across as really well-rounded or relatable?