The Encyclopedia of Arda - an interactive guide to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien
Started III 1601 (Year 1 by the Shire-reckoning)


About this entry:

  • Updated 31 January 1998
  • Updates planned: 3


The count of years according to the Shire-hobbits

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The system of reckoning dates unique to the Hobbits of the Shire, based on the founding of that land in III 1601. The Shire-hobbits reckoned this as year 1. So, years of the Third Age can be converted to Shire-years by subtracting 1600 (e.g. the Downfall of Barad-dûr occurred in III 3019, but in the Shire this was counted as the year 1419).

The Shire-folk took no account of the change of Age in III 3021. While the other peoples of Middle-earth considered this to be the first year of the Fourth Age, in the Shire it was simply 14221.



Somewhat confusingly, there are two possible systems for converting Shire years into years of the Fourth Age. According to an alternative approach, the first year of the Fourth Age would be 1421 by the Shire-reckoning, rather than 1422. For more on this topic, see the section Converting Fourth Age Dates in the entry for the Fourth Age.

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