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the Truth about Tom Bombadil

C

CupieDavid

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Hi everyone,
I just found this site and I was looking around the Forum when I noticed people talking about Tom Bombadil. I think a few people misunderstand this strange and almost out of place character in Tolkiens Epic. Weather you believe it or not he was the most powerful being on Middle Earth at the time of the War of The Rings. He(Aule) and Goldberry(Yavanna) are the only Valar to present themself in the book, and also change the events of the story (when Tom saved Frodo and Company.) I'd like thoughs who are intrested to take a look at this site.

http://www.cas.unt.edu/~hargrove/bombadil.html

It will explan in more detail

I hope everyone reads the Essay and thinks of Tom in a new light when they read the books again :)

Cupie
 

Dhôn-Buri-Dhôn

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CupieDavid,

That site is great, but you should be aware that JRRT never explicitly stated who/what Bombadil was. Every answer is speculation -- sometimes very compelling speculation, like your link -- but there's no "right" answer. Tolkien probably meant for that to be so.

Another strong argument can be made that Tom and Goldberry are spirits of Middle-Earth (Arda) itself. I tend to change my mind from time to time about which theory I like best. I wouldn't be surprised if JRRT wanted that to happen, too!
 

Úlairi

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Tom could not have been Aule nor a Valar for that matter. If he was Aule the Ring would have interested him greatly and in the Council of Elrond Erestor states that Bombadil could not defy the power of Sauron forever. It is specifically stated in The Silmarillion that none of the Valar shall come to Arda until the return of Melkor. He could not have been a Maia otherwise he would have been tempted by the Ring, just like Saruman and Gandalf were. Tom is an enigma and an enigma shall he remain. There is no "truth" to what Bombadil was and there never will be.
 

Rangerdave

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Well Said

I tend to agree with Ulairi in that Tom could not have been of the Valar. Remember that Goldberry stated that Tom was there before the coming of the stars and the powers of the world.
This means that Tom walked middle-earth before the coming of the Valar. My personal opinion is that Tom is the sentient manisfestation of the Music of the Auinar (sp?) In short Tom is Middle Earth.

Of course I could be wrong
RD
 

Maedhros

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This means that Tom walked middle-earth before the coming of the Valar. My personal opinion is that Tom is the sentient manisfestation of the Music of the Auinar (sp?) In short Tom is Middle Earth.
In the Ainulindale, it states that the ainur were the first offspring of the thought of Eru.
Are you saying that Tom was "before" that. More ancient that the Ainur. Or that the ainur in their music created him as they made ME.
 

Grond

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I think what RD is saying is the latter. I always felt Tom would have been a part of the third theme from which Elves and Men were born. He became a being at Arda's earliest forming, before the Vala descended upon it.

Thus he is indeed, younger than the Ainur but the oldest living being. At least, that's my take. BTW Maedhros, I'll have your elf height information before the end of the week. I have to find it again in the HoMe. I'm not sure which book it is in but will give you your quote.

BTW again, Grond doesn't just pull stuff out of a hat and post it for fun. You can count on it being factual if I put it down (although I have been known to make errors now and again.) ;)
 

Maedhros

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You can count on it being factual if I put it down (although I have been known to make errors now and again.)
I thought you hammer things down. :)
What happened to your title? It was cool. Melkor's Moderating Mace.
 

Grond

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CupieDavid, I forgot to actually address your opening statement of the post. The link you gave is simply a paper written by someone other than the author and is not in any way the author's final opinon on the matter.

The author, Mr. Gene Hargrove, merely reviews all of the pertinent resource materials (primarily from Tolkien's Letters) and comes to an unproveable conclusion. I will simply direct you to Letter #144 to Ms. Naomi Mitchison, a proof reader on 25 April, 1954. It is an 8 or so page letter and the pertinent information is on page 6 (depending on the edition). I suggest you read what the author has to say before allowing others to put words in the author's mouth. :)
 
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Beorn

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Can't let this go on...

Click the search button at the top. Search for 'enigma'

It's the exact word that Tolkien used to describe Tom.

Unless RW or Grond or someone rushes in, I'll have the quote tomorrow or Tues...
 

Úlairi

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Beorn, an enigma is a:

"Puzzling thing or person."
I am sorry to those who do not understand the big words I use, I will break it down in the near future.

***This is a condescending personal attack and is not needed here. Please be nice!***
Grond
 
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LadyGaladriel

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Many readers of the Lord of the Rings consider Tom's presence in the first book to be an unnecessary intrusion into the narrative, which could be omitted without loss.

What on earth?! Tom is Great! His part of Middleearth!
 

Beorn

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As a story, I think it is good that there should be a lot of things unexplained (especially if an explanation actually exists);
... And even in a mythical Age there must be some enigmas, as there always are. Tom Bombadil is one (intentionally)."
(The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, p. 174)

Now, it is completely impossible to say that one can confirm that they know what Tom is.
 

Rangerdave

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Thanks Grond

As usual the Hammer hit the nail right on the head. That was the point I was trying to make. Thank you for presenting it more clearly.

What I meant was that Arda was created before the Valar descended into it, and part of the Music that created the world also created Tom. So Tom cannot be older than the Aiunar (sp?) since their music created him along with the world.

The best classical reference would be to Gea who was the spirit of the world.

I apologize for not being specific in my rantings. I will try to rectify this in any future posts.

Thanks Again to Grond
RD
 
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Greenleaf

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CupieDavid- I thought the link was great. I really made me think about tom a lot.


Originally posted by Grond
The link you gave is simply a paper written by someone other than the author and is not in any way the author's final opinon on the matter.
Grond-
I do no think CupieDavid was trying to say that this is the “final word” on tom. I felt it simply was an inserting view of a somewhat baffling character, it's that what this forum is about? You said that it was “simply a paper” I don’t think he clamed that it was any thing else.
 

Grond

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Originally posted by CupieDavid
Hi everyone,
I just found this site and I was looking around the Forum when I noticed people talking about Tom Bombadil. I think a few people misunderstand this strange and almost out of place character in Tolkiens Epic. Weather you believe it or not he was the most powerful being on Middle Earth at the time of the War of The Rings. He(Aule) and Goldberry(Yavanna) are the only Valar to present themself in the book, and also change the events of the story (when Tom saved Frodo and Company.) I'd like thoughs who are intrested to take a look at this site.

http://www.cas.unt.edu/~hargrove/bombadil.html

It will explan in more detail

I hope everyone reads the Essay and thinks of Tom in a new light when they read the books again :)

Cupie
Greenleaf, while I appreciate your comments, CupieDavid's post is a definitive. He doesn't use the word "opinion" in his post. It is my job to make sure that what is posted is accurate and I stand by my original post. The "essay" cited in the web-link is an opinion and not a factual description based on the author's writings. That is all I was trying to point out. I wouldn't have jumped in if CupieDavid had stated that this was one of the many options we discussed about what Tom might could have been. :)
 

Greenleaf

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Re: Re: the Truth about Tom Bombadil

Originally posted by Grond
Greenleaf, while I appreciate your comments, CupieDavid's post is a definitive. He doesn't use the word "opinion" in his post. It is my job to make sure that what is posted is accurate and I stand by my original post. The "essay" cited in the web-link is an opinion and not a factual description based on the author's writings. That is all I was trying to point out. I wouldn't have jumped in if CupieDavid had stated that this was one of the many options we discussed about what Tom might could have been. :)
Maybe but I still hold that CupieDavid was stating his opinion. A very valid @ that. Perhaps is should have been couched better but this is just hair splitting.
:rolleyes: :) :D
 

Rangerdave

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Question?

I may be just whistling in the dark, but I seem to remember mention in the SIM that the Valar will come not again unto Middle-Earth until the return of Melkor/Morgoth

Question One: Is this accurate or do I have the advanced stages of old-timers syndrome?

Question Two: If by some miraculous chance I do have it right, would'nt that sort of nullify the whole Tom is Aule theory outright?

Your wisdom is appreciated
RD
 

DGoeij

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Don't know about your question RD,

but I do like the essay I've just seen. Because of the thought out opnion it presents. It's just an opnion though, Tom is one of my favorite characters, because 'He is'. What he is, I do not care if that remains a mystery, with or without 'big words'.
 

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