What is Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien? How is he different from a human?

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kathik | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

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Bilbo Baggins in J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit is a hobbit. He is described as being a little person, about half as tall as a human being and smaller than a dwarf. Hobbits do not have beards and are shy. They tend to be chubby, and they like to dress in bright colors. Hobbits go barefoot-

"because their feet grow natural leathery soles and thick warm brown hair like the stuff on their heads (which is curly); have long, clever brown fingers, good-natured faces, and laugh deep fruity laughs (especially after dinner, which they have twice a day when they can get it)." (Tolkien 2)

According to Tolkien, hobbits are not magical, but they have very good hearing, so when a human comes around, they can get out of sight quickly. Hobbits, in general, do not like adventures, and Bilbo Baggins is no exception at the beginning of the book. However, the wizard Gandalf will not take no for an answer, and Bilbo ends up going off on a very big, life-changing adventure.

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