Tolkien Gateway

Bombur

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Bombur
Dwarf
Physical Description
GenderMale

Bombur was a fat Dwarf who accompanied Thorin Oakenshield and Bilbo Baggins on their journey to Erebor. His brother Bofur and cousin Bifur also joined the quest.

Contents

History

Lineage

Bombur descended from Dwarves of Khazad-dum, but was not among Durin's folk, so he was either from the Firebeards or Broadbeams Houses, since the population of these houses was located in Khazad-dûm up until Durin's Bane awoke.

The Quest of Erebor

"Poor, fat" Bombur was frequently described as foolish and being the last in everything. Because he counted for two, he was the last to enter Beorn's house and the last to cross the enchanted river in Mirkwood. And he made mistakes when he was last: He tumbled with Bifur and Bofur onto Thorin when they entered Bag End last. He chooses to stay and guard the supplies camp while the others move up Erebor because he trusts neither mountain paths nor ropes. Later though, he is forced to use the ropes to escape the rampaging dragon Smaug.

Bombur slept at several key moments his journey to the mountain. When he tripped into the Mirkwood river, he fell under a spell that made him sleep for days, burdening the others with his weight as they walked on. And while he was on a midnight lookout in the fortified Erebor, Bilbo promised to keep watch so that he could sleep in the warmth (Bilbo used this opportunity to sneak the Arkenstone out of the mountain). Incidentally, he was asleep when they opened his barrel after escaping the Elves of Mirkwood and also when Bilbo discovered the secret entrance to Erebor.

Though a handful, Bombur was a a very friendly dwarf.

Later Life

Many years later, Frodo Baggins inquired about Bombur and learned that he had grown so fat it took six Dwarves to lift him.

Etymology

Bombur, or Bumburr, is a dwarf from the Dvergatal. His name most likely means "the Swollen One".[1]

Other versions of the Legendarium

In Tolkien's unfinished rewrite of The Hobbit (published in The History of The Hobbit) Bombur, along with Bifur and Bofur, is said to be Thorin's attendant.

Portrayal in Adaptations

1968: The Hobbit (1968 radio series):

Bombur is played by Duncan McIntyre.

1977: The Hobbit (1977 film):

Bombur is played by Paul Frees.

1979: The Hobbit (1979 radio series):

No actor is specified for the role of Bombur.

1982: The Hobbit (1982 video game):

Bombur is omitted; Thorin is the only companion of the player, Bilbo Baggins.[2]

2003: The Hobbit (2003 video game):

No actor is credited for the role of Bombur.

2012-3: The Hobbit films:

Bombur will be played by Stephen Hunter.

References

  1. Chester Nathan Gould, "Dwarf-Names: A Study in Old Icelandic Religion", published in Publications of the Modern Language Association of America, Vol 44 (1929), issue #4, pp. 939-967
  2. ZX Computing iss. 8304 p. 76 reproduced at World of Spectrum - Archive (retrieved 16 August 2010)



Members of Thorin and Company
Thorin · Balin · Dwalin · Fíli · Kíli · Dori · Nori · Ori · Óin · Glóin · Bifur · Bofur · Bombur · Gandalf · Bilbo Baggins