The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Dates
Apparently dates back to the beginning of the World
Race
Unknown - see the entry for Tom Bombadil for a discussion
Meaning
'Ancient' or 'Belonging to the distant past'1
Other names
Titles

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  • Updated 16 April 2010
  • This entry is complete

Forn

One of the many names of Tom Bombadil

The name used among the Dwarves for the being known to the Hobbits as Tom Bombadil. In fact, Forn is not a Dwarvish name, but comes from ancient Scandinavian, representing the Mannish language of the region around Dale. That was the same language the Longbeard Dwarves used for their own 'outer' names, such as Durin, Dwalin or Bifur. So, if Tom had ever visited the Lonely Mountain or its nearby lands - and to have a name like this, it seems he must have done so in the past - not only the Dwarves but also the Men of that region would have understood his name Forn: 'one out of the ancient past'.


Notes

1

The name Forn comes from a Scandinavian word - it is not related to the Elvish word for 'north' in names like Fornost.

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