The Professor – On Hobbits


“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien

“Hobbits really are amazing creatures. You can learn all that there is to know about them in a month, and yet after a hundred years, they can still surprise you.”
J.R.R. Tolkien


In 1920, Tolkien was appointed Reader in English Language at Oxford University, marking the beginning of a distinguished academic career. One day, when he was marking examination papers, Tolkien found that a student left one blank page in his answer book.   On impulse, he penned these words on that page: “In a hole in the ground there lived a Hobbit”.  And so began the journey.  J.R.R.Tolkien determined to find out what a Hobbit was, what sort of a hole it lived in and why it lived in a hole.

J.R.R. Tolkien pursued this idea with keen resolve, travelling the time and the world in which Hobbits lived.  He found that Hobbits loved to celebrate life, to seek comfort over adventure, preferring to share a generous meal with a friend, rather than embarking on a strange journey.  Perhaps J.R.R. Tolkien’s greatest discovery is captured in his words: “I am in fact, a hobbit in all but size”

Every year, on January 3rd, J.R.R. Tolkien fans from around the world are invited to raise a glass and toast the birthday of this much loved author at 21:00 (9:00 pm) local time. The toast is simply, “The Professor.”

He would want us to continue the adventure…

“Don’t adventures ever have an end? I suppose not. Someone else always has to carry on on the story.” 
J.R.R. Tolkien