Study Guide

The Hobbit, or, There and Back Again Chapter 10

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Chapter 10

A Warm Welcome

  • The trip down the river is very unpleasant, and Bilbo (who's clinging to a barrel rather than being packed inside one) catches a horrible cold.
  • Once the raft of barrels is moored at Lake-town, the elves go off and Bilbo cuts the dwarves out of their barrels.
  • Thorin thanks Bilbo for the trip, "though [he wishes Bilbo] could have arranged a more comfortable journey" (10.17).
  • Thorin marches right up to the gates of the town and announces, "Thorin son of Thrain son of Thror King under the Mountain! [...] I have come back. I wish to see the Master of your town!" (10.21).
  • All the guards are pretty excited to hear this.
  • They bring the dwarves to see the Master of the town, who's feasting with the elves who brought their "empty" wine barrels to the town.
  • These elves identify Thorin and his crew as prisoners escaped from the Elvenking.
  • Thorin dismisses the right of the Elvenking to keep him prisoner.
  • People are really excited that Thorin is back in town – they all have legends of the great wealth of the Lonely Mountain when the dwarves were in residence.
  • They start singing in the streets: "The King beneath the mountains, / The King of carven stone, / The lord of silver fountains / Shall come into his own!" (10.35).
  • After about two weeks chilling in Lake-town, Thorin suggests that they get going on their quest.
  • The Master is surprised: he never really believed that Thorin was a descendant of the old dwarvish kings.
  • But the Master is glad to see Thorin go – he and his dwarves are really stirring things up in Lake-town.
  • So the dwarves (and Bilbo) all set out one autumn day to the Lonely Mountain.

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