The Fellowship of the Ring's Thematic Analysis

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British Literature Honors
Fellowship of the Ring Thematic Analysis
In J.R.R Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring a young hobbit named Frodo Baggins is selected to go on a quest in which he and his company must take the Ring to Mount Doom in Mordor, the place where the Ring was forged. Frodo is accompanied by his best friend, Sam, and runs into many interesting characters along the way. Throughout the company’s journey the temptation of the ring lures many characters astray and puts the company in many dangerous situations. In the novel the reader sees how even the most powerful man can be corrupted by temptation. Tolkien’s novel also shares many similarities with The Holy Bible, prevalent examples include The Garden of Eden story found in Genesis and Jesus in the Desert in the book of Luke. Throughout Tolkien’s novel many different characters, such as Frodo, Bilbo, Sméagol, Gandalf and Boromir become tempted because of the Ring’s great power. In the Prologue of The Fellowship of the Ring Tolkien makes it clear that hobbits are comparable to human beings “It is plain indeed that in spite of later estrangement Hobbits are relatives of ours.” (Tolkien Prologue). Tolkien then goes on to describe the typical lifestyle of the Hobbits and how then enjoy a quiet lifestyle filled without worries. The Hobbits are more worried about what they will have for dinner rather than what a distant leader is doing. While Tolkien makes the Hobbit out to seem unimportant "these little people seemed of very little importance" (Tolkien Prologue), the reader soon finds out their actions are far bigger than anyone suspects. Bilbo stumbles upon the Ring out of luck while trying to escape a cave. Bilbo did not want to find the Ring nor did he know about the power that it possess. Little does Bilbo know what he has just discovered and how it will change his life for good. Throughout the novel many of the Hobbits major decisions are based off luck, just like Bilbo’s acquiring of the Ring. J.R.R Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring opens with Bilbo Baggins celebrating his 111th birthday. Here Bilbo passes the Ring along to his heir, Frodo Baggins, although he is hesitant at first, Gandalf successfully urges him to do so. After Frodo receives the Ring, Gandalf tells him the Ring must be taken away from the Shire, as Sauron’s power is growing. As Frodo sets out from the Shire with his three friends- Sam, Merry and Pippin, they are pursued by nine Ringwraiths, which take the form of Black Riders. Their first night in the Old Forest, the three hobbits must be saved by Tom Bombadil, the oldest creature in Middle Earth. The hobbits eventually make it to the town of Bree, where they meet Aragorn, a ranger who roams the wilderness. At the inn, Frodo attempts to keep a low profile but fails when he accidently slips the Ring onto his finger and vanishes. That night, Aragon advises the hobbits not to sleep in their rooms, which in turn, saves their lives. A letter left by Gandalf months before advises the hobbits to head to Rivendell, a realm of the Elves. The next day the hobbits and Aragon set out toward Rivendell but end up in a skirmish in which Frodo is injured. As the company heads eastward, Frodo’s wound becomes infected and causes great concern from Aragon and the rest of the company. Near Rivendell the company meets the Elf lord, Glorfindel, who has been watching out for them. Just outside of Rivendell, the company collides with a group of Black Riders, but the company escapes due to a flood created by Elrond, the master of Rivendell. Inside Rivendell, Elrond heals Frodo’s wound and holds a meeting in which they discuss the Ring. During this meeting, Frodo learns about the history of the Ring and accepts the burden of taking the Ring to the only place where it can be destroyed, Mordor. As the meeting concludes the Council creates a group to aid Frodo in destroying the Ring. The Fellowship of the Ring includes Sam, Merry,...
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