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This article is about the character in The Hobbit. For the the King of Dale in the Fourth Age, see Bard II.
"Arrow! Black arrow! I have saved you to the last. You have never failed me and always I have recovered you. I had you from my father and he from of old. If ever you came from the forges of the true king under the Mountain, go now and speed well!"
― Bard, Fire and Water
Bard I
Biographical Information
DeathT.A. 2977
Physical Description
GalleryImages of Bard I

Bard I, also known as Bard the Bowman (died c. Third Age 2977), was a man of Lake-town, and later the restored King of Dale.



Bard served as a soldier in Lake-town, and was one of the most skilled archers among Men. He was the heir of Girion, the last king of old Dale. Bard was able to slay the Dragon Smaug with a single arrow after a tip from the old thrush (who had overheard Bilbo Baggins' description of Smaug) revealed an unarmoured spot on the Dragon's underside. Because of his miraculous shot he was given the epithet "the Bowman".

Bard claimed a twelfth of the treasure amassed by the dragon, which he subsequently shared with the Master of Lake-town to rebuild the town. However, the Master stole the money and ran off into the wild where he died. Four years later, after the rebuilding of the city, Bard became the first King of restored Dale.


Robert Ireland and Ruth S. Noel provide Celtic origins, bárd ("guardian") and bard ("poet").

However, the language of Dale tends to be translated into Old Norse, not Celtic. In other Germanic names (such as Isembard), bard refers to beard. This could be either the facial hair, or more likely "Battle-Axe" (beard is also a term for a part of an axe).


Bard II

See also

Preceded by:
Girion, 174 years earlier
King of Dale
T.A. 29442977
Followed by: