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Today in Middle-Earth history: September 22nd (Happy Birthday Bilbo & Frodo!)

09.22.09 | Kunochan | 1 Comment

Happy Birthday Bilbo Baggins

New Line publicity still.

Note: From this post onward, I will be using Tolkien’s unadjusted Shire Calendar for Today in Middle-earth History. Although the adjusted calendar is a more accurate translation to our modern Gregorian Calendar, the original Shire Calendar is more popular on fan and scholarship sites, and provides the dates given in the text of The Lord of the Rings.

September 22nd is a very important day in Tolkien’s Legendarium, particularly with regard to characters and events related to the War of the Ring.

On September 22nd, 2890 TA, Bilbo Baggins was born to Bungo Baggins and Belladonna Baggins (née Took), probably at Bag End.

Precisely 78 years later, on September 22nd, 2968 TA, Frodo Baggins was born to Drogo Baggins and Primula Baggins (née Brandybuck), probably at Brandy Hall in Buckland.

On his “eleventy-first” birthday, September 22nd, 3001 TA, Bilbo held his infamous birthday party, and disappeared from The Shire forever.

This day has other significance — the Nazgûl first arrived in The Shire, disguised as Black Riders (3018); Saruman arrived in The Shire, having fled his utter defeat at Orthanc (3019); Frodo joined Elrond, Galadriel and Gandalf on their way to the Grey Havens (3021); and Sam Gamgee left The Shire forever, to follow his master Frodo into the Uttermost West (61 FA).

Internationally, Tolkien’s fans celebrate today as Hobbit Day. And Sala Baker was born on September 22nd, 1976 AD — he played Second Age Sauron in the flashback sequences at the start of The Fellowship of the Ring, as well as orc characters in the other films.

For more info: The Shire Calendar on Wikipedia; the Encyclopedia of Arda’s very useful interactive calendar.
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