Guide to The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit/Chapter 3

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Chapter 3 of The Hobbit


The company continues on. Bilbo and the dwarves approach the Misty Mountains. Sensing danger, Bilbo thinks of home. Gandalf wanrs that they are at the edge of Wild. They can stay in Rivendell with their friend Elrond in Rivendell. Arriving, they are greeted by singing elves. Bilbo loves elves, but learns that dwarves and elves are traditional enemies. This manifests in Bilbo's companions' decision to decline of the elves' invition to supper.

The group arrives at the house of Elrond, a wise and hospitalble elf. Elrond is joyful people have come. They stay 2 weeks until midsummer, eating, singing, and telling tales.

Elrond indentifies the sources of their swords as come from dragon plunder or the Goblin-wars and translates their runes: Gandal's sword is named Glamdring and Thor's sword is named Orcrist. Elrond also interprets the moon-letters on Thorin's map, letters that can be seen by the light of a moon as the way it was written. The letters tell the reader to stand by a stone near a thrush and the setting sun of Durin's Day will shine on a key-hole, a secret entranceway to the Lonely Mountain. Thorin, Durin's heir, explains that Durin's Day is the first day of the dwarves' New Year.

The next day, the dwarves pack up and leave toward the Misty Mountains and beyond. Though they are puzzled by the message, the group is in high spirits when they depart from Rivendell. The two weeks of rest has enabled the group to be well-rested.


Chapter 2 and 3 indicate that the further a journey gets, the more difficult it gets.

Elrond assumes an important role as he explains things to the group the significance of the swords they took from the trolls' cave.


lair den; refuge or hiding place.

hoard: a supply stored up or hidden away.

Goblins: grotesque, malicious creatures.

plundered/plunderers: to take by force; to rob or loot; those who take by force, rob, or loot.

cleave: to split or pass through by cutting.