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Founded in III 1601 (year 1 by the Shire-reckoning), and expanded to include Buckland in III 2340, and the Westmarch in IV 31 (740 and 1452 by the Shire-reckoning)
Eriador in the northwest of Middle-earth
From Old English scír, meaning a land granted as a fiefdom
Other names


About this entry:

  • Updated 21 February 2008
  • Updates planned: 50

The Shire

The land of Hobbits west of the Brandywine

Encyclopedia of Arda Timeline
Years of the Trees First Age Second Age Third Age Fourth Age and Beyond
A partial map of the Shire
The central regions of the Shire
(Partially conjectural)

At the end of the Third Age, the Shire was the most populous country of the Hobbits in the north of Middle-earth. It was founded in the middle of the Third Age by the Bree-hobbits Marcho and Blanco, and gifted to them and their followers by King Argeleb II of Arthedain, within whose borders the land lay at that time.

The Shire was divided into four farthings, North, South, East and West; its chief town was at Michel Delving on the White Downs, in the Westfarthing. The Mayor of Michel Delving was accounted among the most important of the Shire-hobbits, as was the Thain (the head of the Took family).

The Shire was largely given over to agriculture, and its land was well-suited for farming. One of its chief products was Halflings' Leaf (tobacco), grown especially in the warmer regions of the Southfarthing.

See also...

Adamanta Chubb, Aduial, Afteryule, Alders, Alfrida of the Yale, Andrath, Apples, Aragorn Elessar, Arahad II, Argeleb II, Argonui, Arnor, Arvegil, Asphodel, Badgers, [See the full list...]

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