Skies of Rohan - Did You Know that in <i>The Fellowship of the Ring</i> - Patty Howerton

Skies of Rohan - Did you know that in The Fellowship of the Ring . . .

Although the movies are wonderful representations of The Lord of the Rings, the movie-makers had to compress the story in many ways and make alterations appropriate for a theater audience. Because of this process, a great deal of background information and character development had to be left out of the movies. People who have only seen the movies may be surprised and excited to find that the books contain much more information, details and stories about their favorite characters. This document includes tidbits and teasers related to the storyline and characters that are not found in the New Line Cinema movies of The Lord of the Rings. It is the hope of Skies of Rohan that learning more of the details of the story will entice moviegoers into reading the books that are the source of the movies and discovering even more of the magic of Middle-earth.


Did You Know that inThe Fellowship of the Ring. . .

  • The title of the first chapter in The Hobbit is named An Unexpected Party. The title of the first chapter in The Fellowship of the Ring is named A Long-Expected Party.
  • It was not until Frodo's parents drowned in a boating accident on the Brandywine River that he went to live with his older cousin, Bilbo Baggins. Bilbo later adopted Frodo and named him as his heir.
  • Hamfast Gamgee (known as ‘the Gaffer’) was Bilbo’s gardener at Bag End. When the Gaffer retired, it was his son, Sam Gamgee, who took on the job. Sam and Frodo became close friends. Bilbo told Frodo and Sam many tales of his adventures and taught them Elvish poetry and lore.
  • Bilbo and Frodo share the same birthday, which is September 22nd. Bilbo was celebrating his 111th birthday the night of the ‘long expected’ party. This was extremely old for a hobbit, yet Bilbo still had the appearance and vitality of a middle-aged hobbit. Bilbo’s great age was one of the clues that alerted Gandalf to the fact that there might be more to Bilbo’s magic ring.
  • After Bilbo gave his ring to Frodo and departed for Rivendell, Gandalf asked the Rangers to double their watch as many evil things had begun to gather round the Shire. Even the hobbits had begun to report and complain of many strange persons and creatures prowling around the borders.
  • The men and hobbits who lived in the borderlands knew of the existence of Rangers, but did not know what their true purpose was. To their mind, Rangers were a strange and suspicious lot. The hobbits lived in peace and freedom in the beautiful Shire due to the quiet vigilence and unceasing watch of the Rangers.
  • The two sons of Elrond of Rivendell, Elladan and Elrohir, often rode with Aragorn and the other Rangers in their protection of the North. Never having forgotten the torment of their mother, they took every opportunity to wage war against Orcs and the forces of Sauron.
  • Gandalf had long questioned the true nature of the magic ring Bilbo had won from Gollum. After Bilbo's strange behavior and reluctance to leave the ring to Frodo the night of his birthday party, Gandalf felt it must be one of the Rings of power but had no proof. Aragorn told Gandalf they must find Gollum and question him.
  • To learn more of the truth about the ring left with Frodo, Gandalf and Aragorn set forth on a lengthy quest searching for Gollum across many lands. After a period of several years, with no sign of Gollum, Gandalf despaired of the task and returned alone to Minas Tirith to search the archives for information on Isildur's ring.
  • Aragorn continued alone in the search for Gollum and searched ever closer to Mordor and the realm of Sauron.

  • The beginning of events during the two great years of the War of the Ring

  • Over fifteen years had passed since Bilbo had left the ring with Frodo.
  • February
  • At long last and after great peril, Aragorn captured Gollum in the Dead Marshes and began the long journey back. After fifty days, they at last reached the realm of King Thranduil in Mirkwood, where Aragorn left Gollum. Aragorn commented later that he had grown very weary of Gollum's company and had hoped to never see him again.
  • When passing through Lorien, Gandalf heard that Aragorn had passed that way with the creature Gollum. Gandalf immediately left for Mirkwood.
  • When Gandalf questioned Gollum, he learned that Gollum had been captured and tortured by Sauron. Gollum had revealed to Sauron that the Ring had been found by a hobbit from the Shire, whose name was Baggins. Gandalf left Gollum in the keeping of King Thranduil and the elves in Mirkwood.
  • April
  • Gandalf returned to the Shire to tell Frodo the true nature of the Ring and suggested to Frodo that he should leave the Shire immediately, but Frodo was reluctant to do so until the autumn of the year.
  • June
  • After receiving word from his spies that Gandalf had questioned Gollum, Sauron sent Orcs into the realm of King Thranduil with orders to either re-capture of kill Gollum.
  • While passing close to the village of Bree, Gandalf encountered the wizard Radagast. Radagast had been searching for Gandalf with a message from the wizard Saruman. Saruman wished to advise Gandalf that Ringwraiths had crossed the borders of Mordor and were looking for a land called the Shire. Saruman also said that if Gandalf wished his aid, then he should come to Isengard at once.
  • Upon hearing this news, Gandalf immediately wrote a letter to Frodo and told him to leave the Shire no later than July. Gandalf left the letter with the innkeeper in Bree, and requested immediate delivery of the letter. Gandalf also found Aragorn and asked him to watch for Frodo's coming. Gandalf then left to consult with Saruman in Isengard.
  • As head of the council of wizards, Saruman had long studied the arts of the Enemy. Gandalf hoped that Saruman had found a weapon that could be used against the Nazgul.
  • July
  • Lured to Isengard by Saruman's offer of help, Gandalf was taken captive.
  • The innkeeper at the Prancing Pony forgot to send the letter and Gandalf was taken captive by Saruman, so Frodo had no warning that the Black Riders were searching for the Shire.
  • Over the summer, Frodo let his friends and neighbors know that he planned to sell Bag End and move to the town of Crickhollow in the fall. Sam let it be known that he planned to move with Frodo to Crickhollow to tend to the new house there. Only Sam knew that he and Frodo really planned to go to Rivendell instead.
  • September
  • Gandalf escaped from Saruman and fled to Rohan to warn King Theoden. When Theoden told him to take a horse, Gandalf chose the King's legendary horse Shadowfax, knowing he would need great speed if he were to reach Frodo in time.
  • The Men of Rohan had been at war on their Eastern border with the forces of Mordor for many years. A great range of mountains ran the length of Rohan on the Western border. The Gap of Rohan was the only pass through the mountains.
  • Isengard was located near the Gap of Rohan. Saruman had been thought a friend until Gandalf warned the King of Saruman's betrayal. Immediately after Gandalf's warning and departure, Saruman began attacking Rohan on the Western border and effectively closed the Gap of Rohan to travelers.
  • Sauron had heard of Saruman's activities and sent some of the Black Riders to Isengard. The Nazgul appeared at the Gates of Isengard a few days after Gandalf had escaped. Saruman told them that he had no knowledge of where the land of the Shire might be, but Gandalf would know, and was in fact, on his way there.
  • Unable to capture Gandalf, the Black Riders were able to determine the location of the Shire from spies and servants of Saruman.
  • Frodo packed up Bag End and celebrated his birthday on September 22nd with his special friends Pippin Took and Merry Brandybuck. Frodo had expected Gandalf at any time since August, but only became concerned when Gandalf missed his birthday.
  • Becoming more and more concerned at Gandalf's absence, Frodo finally set off with Pippin and Sam, at nightfall the next day. Merry had gone ahead to see to the house in Crickhollow.
  • Four Black Riders overpowered Rangers guarding one of the roads into the Shire the night of Frodo’s birthday. One of the Black Riders reached Bag End shortly after the hobbits had departed and confronted Sam's father in an attempt to find Frodo.
  • Frodo, Sam and Pippin meet up with Merry in Crickhollow and depart in secret at dawn. In an attempt to avoid the Black Riders, they chose to travel through the treacherous Old Forest, rather than on the Main Road leading to Bree. That very evening several black Riders attack Crickhollow but departed when they realized the Ring was gone.
  • In their travels through the Old Forest, the hobbits encountered danger several times and narrowly escaped with the help of the eccentric Tom Bombadil.
  • Tom Bombadil is an enigmatic and powerful character whose home provides a temporary sanctuary for the hobbits. Tom and the beautiful Goldberry live in great harmony in the middle of the Old Forest. When Frodo told Tom about the Ring, Tom was neither tempted nor affected by the Ring.
  • Tom Bombadil gave each of the hobbits an ancient blade made by the Men of Westernesse long ago. The swords had been made for battle against the Witch King of Angmar. These swords had qualities above any ordinary and were imbued with virtue and spells. The swordmakers had been defeated by the Witch King, but the swords remained untouched by the years.
  • The Witch King of Angmar was the captain of the Ringwraiths. He was a sorcerer whose power was the equal of Gandalf. Gandalf and Elrond had faced him in battle long ago. The chief power of the other Nazgul was their ability to spread fear and dread.
  • Tom Bombadil escorted the hobbits to the edge of the Old Forest, a few miles from the town of Bree and suggested that they go to the inn of The Prancing Pony for the night. After the warning from Gandalf, Aragorn had lingered in and around the town of Bree, waiting for news of the hobbits. He saw them emerge out of the Old Forest with Tom Bombadil and followed them into Bree.
  • After escaping from Saruman, Gandalf desperately tried to find Frodo and the hobbits, knowing they would be in grave danger. He narrowly missed them several times. Riding Shadowfax, he arrived in Hobbiton a few days after Frodo had left and learned that a Black Rider had been seen. After arriving in Crickhollow and discovering they were not there, Gandalf followed the trail of the Ringwraiths and arrived at The Prancing Pony in Bree the evening of the day the hobbits had left with Aragorn.
  • October
  • Trying to find Aragorn and the hobbits, Gandalf reached Weathertop (Amon Sul) a few days ahead of them. Gandalf was himself attacked on Weathertop by the Ringwraiths. After a fierce battle, Gandalf escaped and lured four of the Black Riders into following him. Because of this, only five of the Black Riders attacked Aragorn and the hobbits on Weathertop.
  • Gandalf rode on to Rivendell to get help from Elrond. When he drew near to Rivendell, Gandalf sent Shadowfax back to Rohan.
  • It was the Witch King of Angmar who stabbed Frodo on Weathertop.
  • Elrond sent several powerful Elves out to search for Aragorn and the hobbits. The elf lord Glorfindel found them several days after Frodo was wounded at Weathertop.
  • It is Glorfindel, who long ago had predicted that 'Not by the hand of man will the Witch King of Angmar fall.'
  • Glorfindel accompanied Aragorn and the hobbits the rest of the way to Rivendell. When they reached the Ford of Bruinen, Frodo was riding Glorfindel’s white horse, Asfaloth. When the Ringwraiths ambushed them, Glorfindel commanded Asfaloth to flee with Frodo across the river. Watching from afar, Elrond unleashed the flood of the river as soon as the captain of the Nazgul rode into the water.
  • When Frodo and his companions at last reached Rivendell, Bilbo was 128 years old. Once Bilbo had passed the Ring on to Frodo, his long years had caught up with him very quickly and he at last showed the appearance and fragility of his great age.
  • Legolas Greenleaf, the son of King Thranduil, came to Rivendell to tell the Council of Elrond that Gollum had escaped from his captivity in Mirkwood, during an attack of Orcs.
  • The dwarf Gloin, came to the Council of Elrond with his son, Gimli, to warn Bilbo that a messenger from Sauron had come to the kingdom of Dwarves several times. Each time the messenger asked for information about a hobbit who had stolen a ring belonging to the Dark Lord.
  • Gloin was one of the thirteen dwarves that Bilbo accompanied on his adventures to The Lonely Mountain.
  • Boromir, the eldest son and heir of the Steward of Gondor, came to the house of Elrond seeking answers. Both Boromir and his younger brother had been having persistent dreams that indicated that Rivendell held answers that would assist Gondor in their time of need.
  • As none could clearly tell him where Rivendell lay, Boromir had traveled along on his journey for 110 days and overcame many obstacles on his journey.
  • Boromir's father, Denethor, is the Steward of the realm of Gondor. The hereditary position of Steward rules the kingdom in the absence of the High King. In Boromir's lifetime, there had not been a King in Gondor, nor any knowledge that an heir to the line of Isildur still lived. Boromir would have expected to rule Gondor after his father.
  • Bilbo also attended the Council of Elrond. Despite his great age, after hearing all of the dire news, Bilbo interrupted Elrond to declare that since he, Bilbo, had started this all by finding the Ring, he had better finish it. And when should he start?
  • Narsil, the Sword-that-was-broken, was forged anew by the elves at Rivendell before the departure of the Fellowship. Aragorn renamed the sword Anduril, Flame of the West and carried it when they left Rivendell.
  • January
  • It was full winter when the Fellowship attempted to cross the mountains of Caradhras.
  • Gandalf told the Fellowship that once they entered Moria, it would be 40 miles from the West Gate to the East Gate.
  • Both Gandalf and Aragorn had been in the Mines of Moria before.
  • When Gollum escaped from the Elves at Mirkwood, he hid from the Elves and from the servants of Sauron in the Mines of Moria. However, when he at last discovered the way to the West Gate of Moria, he could not get out, as the gates were shut. Gollum was still in the vicinity of the West Gate when the Fellowship entered Moria. Gollum immediately sensed the Ring and began to follow them.
  • Balin was the ldaer of he dwarves that tried to re-take the Mines of Moria. Balin was one of the original thirteen dwarves in Thorin Oakenshield’s company and had been Bilbo’s close friend. Two other dwarves from Thorin’s company, Ori and Oin, also perished with Balin in Moria.
  • Although all of the Fellowship grieved for the loss of Gandalf in Moria, Aragorn and Gandalf had been good friends for over sixty years.
  • February
  • Few hobbits or men had ever seen an Elf. The elves of Lothlorien were so secretive and reclusive that their existence was considered by most to be a legend.
  • When Haldir first encounters the Fellowship in the woods of Lothlorien, being unconvinced of the worthiness of a dwarf, he refused to let Gimli proceed without first being blindfolded. Gimli refused unless Legolas was also blindfolded. This did nothing to improve relations between Gimli and Legolas.
  • Orcs from the Mines of Moria followed the Fellowship into the borders of Lothlorien.
  • Both Frodo and Sam look into the Mirror of Galadriel. Sam saw the Shire in ruins and his father, the Gaffer, homeless.
  • From the moment that Gimli first laid eyes on Lady Galadriel, he fell deeply in love with her and was her champion ever after.
  • Galadriel gave each of the Fellowship a special gift when they left the borders of Lothlorien. Frodo was given a crystal that contained the light of a star, to 'be a light in dark places, when all other lights go out'. Sam was given a little box that contained earth from Galadriel’s garden. Even if all was barren and waste when Sam returned to the Shire, the dust of Galadriel would make it bloom again like gardens of Lothlorien.
  • Galadriel did not know what to give a dwarf for a gift and asked Gimli what he would desire. He asked her for a single strand of her golden hair, to remember the beauty of Lorien and its lady and let the gift be a visible pledge of goodwill between the Mountain and the Wood. The other elves were astonished at his bold request, but Galadriel laughed and gave Gimli three golden hairs.
  • Galadriel gave Aragorn a gift that Arwen had sent for him as a token of hope; a great emerald gem set in a silver brooch shaped like an eagle. The Elfstone was an Elvish heirloom that Galadriel had given to her daughter Celebrian, who had given it to her daughter Arwen. Aragorn wore the Elfstone, also known as the Elessar, ever after.
  • When the Fellowship left Lothlorien, Gollum was hiding on the outskirts of the Golden Woods and saw them leave.
  • At Amon Hen, Sauron became aware of Frodo when he put on the Ring to escape Boromir. The Eye then began searching intently for him, trying to pinpoint his location. It was Gandalf who kept Frodo from harm at this dangerous moment by persuading him to finally take off the Ring. Although far away at the time, Gandalf had become aware of the danger, and was able to communicate with Frodo to finally take off the Ring. Gandalf then distracted the Eye and lured it away from Amon Hen and the Fellowship.

Did you know that in The Fellowship of the Ring . . . Copyright (C) 2004 - Patty Howerton / Skies of Rohan

Return to Did You Know main page

Return to Skies of Rohan home page