Hobbit Day

Hobbit Day - Sunday, September 22, 2024

Arts & Entertainment Pop Culture Weird National

Gandalf the Grey said it best: “Hobbits really are amazing creatures.” This September 22, celebrate National Hobbit Day by recognizing J.R.R. Tolkien’s most lovable and heroic characters. Hobbits are shy, yet capable of great courage; reluctant to leave their homes, yet thirsty for adventure; quiet and peaceful, yet eager to host parties. With such wonderful characteristics, Hobbits have endeared generations with their affable complexities. (Here’s some Hobbit trivia: Tolkien envisioned these small people as a separate race, like the Elves and the Dwarfs. Therefore, Hobbit is always capitalized.)

This fall, enjoy one of Tolkien’s classic written works and let your imagination take you on an adventure alongside Frodo and Bilbo Baggins. Just remember: “home is behind, the world ahead” – J.R.R. Tolkien.

September 22nd is the Birthday of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, two characters from J.R.R. Tolkiens popular Middle Earth Cycle books (The Hobbit and Lord Of The Rings respectively) in which Hobbits, typically between two and four feet tall and nothing like your usual hero, accomplish great feats and amazing acts of courage.

It is in honor of these creatures and those acts that the day is celebrated with events, not unlike the birthday party described at the beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring.

In the United States, Hobbit Day has gained some measure of legal dignity due to the elected officials who support the day and the goals of the American Tolkien Society. The Day has also attracted Bipartisan Support from places as the U.S. County Courthouse, to the White House, to the U.S. Capitol.

Learn about Hobbit Day

Hobbit Day is a fun opportunity for people around the world to celebrate two of the most famous fictional characters: Bilbo Baggins and Frodo Baggins. The characters are from two of the most popular books in the world: The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, both of which were written by J. R. R. Tolkien. 

The Hobbit was published first, on the 21st of September in 1937. It was nominated for a number of different awards and received critical acclaim. It is considered a classic still today. Famous British writer, C.S. Lewis, said the following about the book when reviewing it in The Times:  

“The truth is that in this book a number of good things, never before united, have come together: a fund of humour, an understanding of children, and a happy fusion of the scholar’s with the poet’s grasp of mythology”

After this, J.R.R Tolkien delivered once more, creating The Lord of the Rings between 1937 and 1949. According to the books, Bilbo Baggins was born in 2890, which equates to 1290 based on our timeline. Frodo Baggins was then born 78 years later, in 2968, which equates to 1368.

It is fair to say that the reviews were a little bit more mixed at first for The Lord of the Rings. However, the acknowledgement has only grown and grown in terms of this literary achievement. The New York Herald Tribune said that the books were “destined to outlast our time” – what a prediction that was! The Sunday Telegraph described The Lord of the Rings as “among the greatest works of imaginative fiction of the twentieth century.”

It is quite clear to see that these books are two true masterpieces, and so it is only right that we have Hobbit Day in order to pay honor to two of the most adored characters from the books.

History of Hobbit Day

A separate event to Tolkien Week (although the Week will always fall over Hobbit Day, running Sunday to Saturday), Hobbit Day is perhaps the oldest running day celebrated by fans. There is some debate on the date that Hobbit Day should be celebrated on, due to the differences in the Gregorian and Shire calendars.

Tolkien once said that the Shire calendar is ahead by about ten days depending on the month. A suggested alternative date by hardcore fans is September 14th. Although the day was not officially designated until 1978 and has had many names and designations, it has been celebrated since 1973, shortly after J.R.R. Tolkien died on September 2nd of that year.

How to celebrate Hobbit Day

Fans celebrate by anything from going barefoot all day and having seven meals, to Literary discussions and readings, Lord Of The Rings Movie Marathons, and throwing parties in honour of the ‘Long Awaited Party’ at the start of the Fellowship Of The Ring with events such as feasts, games, costumes and fireworks.

Of course, one of the best ways to celebrate Hobbit Day is to simply watch one of the films or read one of the books. It does not matter if you have seen the films before, they are worthy of a second watch, and a third, and a fourth! 

There are also many different games that have been developed. This includes The Lord of the Rings for the PlayStation, as well as The Lord of the Rings lego set. You also have the 2003 The Hobbit video game, which was designed for Xbox, PlayStation 2, and GameCube. This is a fun way to spend Hobbit Day! 

If you know a lot of people who are fans of these novels, why not really make the most of Hobbit Day and host a Lord of the Rings or Hobbit-themed party? This is a great opportunity for all of your loved ones to get together and have a lot of fun. Plus, you can dress up as characters from the books. This is bound to get everyone laughing and enjoying themselves!

Hobbit Day timeline

​December 6, 2012

"​The Hobbit" film is released

The film version of the original adventure of "The Hobbit" is released, grossing $37 million on opening night.

​December 19, 2001

​Hobbits go Hollywood

​The first installment of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, "The Fellowship of the Ring," is released and introduces Hobbits to the big screen.


​Tolkien sells his film rights

Tolkien sold the movie rights, plus rights to tie-in products, for "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" to United Artists for £100,000.

​September 21, 1937

​The Hobbit emerges from Middle-earth

​On September 21, 1937, J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic, "The Hobbit: There and Back Again," was published. It opened to widespread critical acclaim.

​5 Film-making Magic Facts About "The Hobbit"

  1. ​It used an entire country’s paint supply

    "​The Hobbit" crew used up all of the gold paint in New Zealand when creating Smaug's lair. Later, they had to order more paint and get it flown in from Germany.

  2. ​It has the longest film battle in history

    ​"The Battle of The Five Armies" holds the world record for the longest fight sequence in a film, at 45 minutes in the theatrical version.

  3. ​It was a "hairy" business

    ​All of the dwarfs' beards and hair were made of real yak hair. Some of the wig and beard combinations cost the makeup department upwards of $10,000.

  4. ​A seven-year-old girl’s roar is pretty terrifying

    ​The first roar the audience hears from Smaug is actually a sound-bite of the SFX Director's seven-year-old daughter making a roaring noise. It was manipulated and corrected to sound like a dragon in the movie.

  5. ​The film broke more than box office records

    ​During a midnight screening in Sao Paulo, Brazil, one of the cinema's speakers broke after Smaug's first roar.

Hobbit Day Activities

  1. Have a feast

    Hobbits enjoyed as many as six meals a day, so make sure that your festivities include a good amount of food. Known for their well-stocked pantries, Hobbits never miss a chance to sit down among friends and share a good meal and lively conversation.

  2. Give a few gifts

    Represent one of the peaceful pursuits of Hobbits by giving gifts and sharing in the spirit of community. Simple, creative gifts, such as toys, jewelry and small musical instruments are perfect tokens for the festivities.

  3. Go on an adventure

    In the spirit of Hobbits, throw caution to the wind and step out from your cozy household. Whether it be a short walk in a new neighborhood or a trip to Cambodia, experience the thrill of the unknown — just like a Baggins. Explore the world!

Why We Love Hobbit Day

  1. Hobbits are adventurers

    In the land of Middle-earth, filled with dragons, trolls, elves, magic and danger, there's never an end to the fun and trouble. Enjoy an adventure that will make your imagination explode!

  2. Hobbits are loyal

    No matter the challenges that befall its characters, "The Hobbit" always stays true to its main theme – friendship. Through every turn, every test and every trial, Hobbits remain steadfast in their love and loyalty to one another.

  3. Hobbits believe that good always prevails

    "The Hobbit" is a classic story about good versus evil. While those who fight for good certainly experience struggles and loss, their faith that good will triumph never waivers and, in the end, the Hobbits are victorious!

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