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Dates
Born 22 September III 2968, passed over the Sea 29 September III 3021 (1368-1421 by the Shire-reckoning)
Race
Culture
Family
Meaning
Associated with Old English fród, meaning 'wise by experience'1
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  • Updated 18 November 2006
  • Updates planned: 5

Frodo Baggins

The Bearer of the Ring

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The Company of the Ring

Mayors of the Shire

Heir of Bilbo Baggins, and hero of the Lord of the Rings. Renowned for bearing the One Ring to the land of Mordor, and bringing it to the Cracks of Doom.

Life in the Shire, III 2968 - III 3018

Frodo's father, Drogo, had left Hobbiton and removed to Buckland to live with his wife's family, and so Frodo was raised in Brandy Hall, the ancestral home of the Brandybucks. He lost both his parents in a boating accident in 2980. He was close to his distant cousin Bilbo, and nine years after the loss of his parents, Bilbo officially adopted him as his heir. At this time, Frodo moved back from Buckland to Hobbiton.

Although Bilbo often referred to Frodo as his 'favourite nephew', he was in fact his first cousin once removed (through his mother), and also his second cousin once removed (through his father). Frodo lived with Bilbo at Bag End for twelve years, and inherited some of his peculiarities. It was said that he would meet with Elves in the woods, for example, and Bilbo allowed him to read his diary of the journey to Erebor. In 3001, Bilbo held the great Birthday Party on 22 September (a birthday Frodo happened to share) and afterwards departed from the Shire, leaving Frodo to come into his inheritance, including (after much persuasion by Gandalf) the Ring.

After Bilbo's departure, Gandalf visited Hobbiton only occasionally. Frodo often went walking in the Shire, sometimes with his friends Folco Boffin, Fredegar Bolger, Peregrin Took and Meriadoc Brandybuck, but more often alone. His gardener at Bag End was Samwise Gamgee, who was to accompany him on his great journey.

On 12 April 3018, Gandalf returned, having discovered the truth about the Ring, and so Frodo discovered the history behind the One Ring, and the great danger it held. He resolved to leave the Shire with it. To cover his departure, Frodo sold Bag End to Lobelia Sackville-Baggins, and bought a small house at Crickhollow in Buckland, the region where he had been brought up. He departed from Hobbiton with Peregrin Took and Sam Gamgee on 23 September 3018, the day after his fiftieth birthday.

Journey to Rivendell, 26 September - 20 October III 3018

The travellers planned to leave secretly through the Old Forest on its eastern borders, but they soon discovered the dangers of the lands outside the Shire. On the banks of the Withywindle, they were attacked by the malignant Old Man Willow, and their journey would have come to a swift end if not for the aid of a mysterious and powerful stranger: Tom Bombadil. After their adventures in the Forest, and a brief stay in Tom's house, they set out once more.

Again, their plans went wrong almost immediately. Lost in a fog, they strayed into the Barrow-downs, and were quickly captured by one of the Barrow-wights that dwelt there. Again they were saved by Tom, and finally found their way to the East-West Road, along which they travelled in relative safety to the township of Bree. It was later discovered that Aragorn was looking out for Frodo on the road, and had begun to trail the Hobbits as they emerged from the downlands.

At Bree, they came to the Prancing Pony, where Aragorn introduced himself to Frodo as 'Strider'. That night, the inn was raided and the Hobbits' ponies were lost. The following morning, Aragorn led them out into the Wild, through the Chetwood and on across the Midgewater Marshes. Ultimately they came to Weathertop at the southern end of the Weather Hills, where Aragorn hoped to spy out the lands around.

In a dell beneath Weathertop, disaster struck. The Black Riders discovered the sheltering Hobbits and attacked, leaving Frodo with a desperate wound to his shoulder. Aragorn used his powers of healing as he could, but it was beyond even his abilities to cure the poisoned wound. Scrambling on through the hills with the wounded Frodo, they made their slow way towards Rivendell and safety.

Braving the Road, they discovered an ally: Glorfindel of Rivendell. Glorfindel accompanied them for a way, placing Frodo on his horse Asfaloth. As the travellers approached the Ford of Bruinen, the Black Riders suddenly overtook them. At Glorfindel's order, Asfaloth charged forward and raced across the last mile to the Ford, with the Nazgûl in close pursuit.

Frodo and Asfaloth crossed the Ford as the Black Riders paused before entering the waters of Bruinen. On the brink of succumbing to his Morgul-wound, Frodo slipped into the Wraith-world for a moment, as the Nazgûl started to approach. With a sudden roar, the river waters surged into flood through the powers of Elrond and Gandalf. The Black Riders were washed away and, safe at last, Frodo finally fell into unconsciousness on the banks of the river. After twenty-four days of journeying in the Wild, he had brought the Ring to Rivendell at last.


Notes

1

The derivation of Frodo's name is explained in Tolkien's Letters (No 168, dated 1955), where he also explains that '...it had mythological connexions with the legends of the Golden Age in the North.' This seems to be a reference to King Fróði of the Danes, whose reign was legendary for its prosperity and fruitfulness.

See also...

Adalgar Bolger, Adamanta Chubb, Aman, Amon Hen, Amon Sûl, Anemones, Aragorn Elessar, Asfaloth, Asphodel, Asphodel Brandybuck, Bag End, Barad-dûr, Barliman Butterbur, Bay, Bilbo Baggins, [See the full list...]

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