Mittwoch, 22. November 2017

Monday, 22 November 2941 T. A.: Farewell to Erebor, never to come back

"Farewell Thorin Oakenshield! And Fili and
Kili! May your memory never fade!"
(E. Whymper: The Ascent of the Matterhorn, 1880)
I have just seen the setting crescent of the moon, so the second month of this dwarvish year has begun, as far as I am concerned.

About this time, though we cannot pinpoint it any more precisely, Bilbo Baggins finally left Erebor behind and began the long journey home. Some time after Thórins death, there had been a great funeral for the King under the Mountain, and the diplomatic arrangements between Thranduil, Dain and Bard certainly took their time, though Gandalf's presence may have, hopefully, speeded them up to reasonable progress. At any rate, Gandalf went with Bilbo, as did Beorn, and the Wood-elves provided them company to the edge of Mirkwood.

Despite the misgivings of John Rateliff expressed in "The History of the Hobbit", there was plenty of time left to go the long way around Mirkwood in the north and arrive back at Beorn's Hall on time. Karen Fonstad, in "The Atlas of Middle-earth" assumed the date of departure as 27 November 2941 T. A., which is as good a guess as anyone's. Alas, there was no phase of the moon recorded that would have allowed for a more precise identification of the calendar date.