The Lord of the Rings

by J. R. R. Tolkien

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How does Frodo Baggins exemplify the Unwilling Hero archetype in Fellowship of the Rings?

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Frodo Baggins in The Fellowship of the Ring acts as an unwilling hero throughout the trilogy. He is the younger cousin and adopted as heir to the unmarried Bilbo. He inherits the ring and its responsibilities for the ring from Bilbo and does not himself wish to be a ring-bearer. He repeatedly offers the ring to other characters including Gandalf and Galadriel because he thinks that someone more heroic by nature would be better suited for such a responsibility. Towards the end of the novel he is reluctant to accept the honours due to him and tries to retire as much as possible from public view. Part of what makes him succeed as the ringbearer is his very lack of ambition -- that he fundamentally does not wish the power the ring could give.

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