The Hobbit supports a lovely cast of characters. Some of them have become my best friends over the years. I love discovering them again each time I open the book. Please meet my friends from Middle Earth! Some of the descriptions were taken from Sparknotes.com.
Bilbo Baggins: Bilbo is a hobbit, “a short, human-like person.” He lives in The Shire and is the hero of our story. Bilbo leads a quiet life, like most hobbits, and is content to stay home. He likes to eat and smoke Long-bottom Leaf. One day Gandalf stops at his door and asks him to go on an adventure. The Dwarves need someone to burgle for them and help get their gold back. Soon dwarves and elves come into his quiet life and Bilbo is never quite the same again. This adventure will awaken his courage and his relentless ability to do what needs to be done.
Gandalf: Gandalf is a wise wizard who has lived for many years in Middle Earth. He always seems to know more than he reveals to you. Gandalf has a vast command of magic. He shows up at just the moment he is needed most. He is not interested in the gold the dwarves seek on their adventure. He rarely revels his thoughts and he always has another purpose or plan in mind.
Thorin Oakenshield: Thorin leads his fellow dwarves on a trip to the Lonely Mountain to reclaim their treasure from Smaug. Smaug’s bounty is Thorin’s inheritance, as it belonged to Thror, Thorin’s grandfather, the great King under the Mountain. He is proud and stubborn but a sturdy warrior.
Gollum: A strange, small, slimy creature who lives deep in the caves of Moria beneath the Misty Mountains. There, Gollum broods over his “precious,” a magic ring, until he accidentally loses it and Bilbo finds it. We never learn exactly what kind of creature he is. Apparently, his true shape has been too deformed by years of living in darkness to be recognizable.
Smaug: The great dragon who lives in the Lonely Mountain. Years ago, Smaug heard of the treasure that the dwarves had amassed in the mountain under Thror’s reign, and he drove them away to claim the gold for himself. His flaming breath can scorch a city, his huge wings can carry him great distances, and his armor-like hide is almost impenetrable. Smaug can speak and possesses a dark, sardonic sense of humor.
Bard: Bard is the honorable captain of the guard in Lake Town, a human city built on Long Lake just south of the Lonely Mountain. With the help of information discovered by Bilbo and related by a thrush, Bard finds Smaug’s weak spot.
Elrond: The great leader of the elves at Rivendell. Elrond gives Bilbo’s group aid and helpful advice when they pass through Rivendell. He is described as being “as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer.”
Dark Lord Sauron: An evil sorcerer and creator of the magic ring. Also called the Necromancer, Sauron is only mentioned in The Hobbit; he never actually appears.
Dwarves: Thorin’s group is composed of Fili, Kili, Dwalin, Balin, Oin, Gloin, Ori, Dori, Nori, Bifur, Bofur, and Bombur. They love to drink, eat and sing songs. Dwarves can be a greedy lot. They love to mine things and live underground. They loves riches and trickery.
Elves: There are actually two different varieties of elves: the wood elves and the high elves. They are immortal unless killed in battle. They have beautiful voices and are fair-skinned. They are also close to nature and are excellent craftsman.
Humans: Humans appear in the settlement of Lake Town near the Lonely Mountain. Tolkien emphasizes their mortality, their lack of wisdom, their discordance with nature, and their rampant feuding.
Trolls: Short-tempered and dull-witted creatures who will eat just about anything, the trolls are based on mythological creatures taken from Old English and Anglo-Saxon poems and on figures from popular fairy tales and folklore.
Goblins: Goblins are infamous for their ability to make cruel weapons and torture devices. They are truly evil.
Wargs: Evil wolves that join forces with the Goblins during a battle. The Wargs haunt and pursue Bilbo and the dwarves soon after Bilbo acquires the ring.