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Gaffer Gamgee

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m (iw de fi)
(Shouldn't Hamfast be the main article? I'll rewrite it this weekend)
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| name=Hamfast "Gaffer" Gamgee
 
| name=Hamfast "Gaffer" Gamgee
 
| othernames=
 
| othernames=
| birth=[[Shire Reckoning 1326|S.R. 1326]]
+
| birth=[[Third Age 2926|S.R. 1326]]
| death=[[Shire Reckoning 1428|S.R. 1428]]
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| death=[[Third Age 3028|S.R. 1428]]
 
| parentage=[[Hobson Gamgee]] + ?
 
| parentage=[[Hobson Gamgee]] + ?
 
| location=[[Hobbiton]]
 
| location=[[Hobbiton]]

Revision as of 09:20, 7 March 2008

"...It is a long tale..." — Aragorn
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Stephen Hickman - Gaffer Gamgee and the Black Rider.jpg
Hamfast "Gaffer" Gamgee
Hobbit
Biographical Information
LocationHobbiton
BirthS.R. 1326
DeathS.R. 1428
Family
ParentageHobson Gamgee + ?
Physical Description
GenderMale
Hair colorPossibly brown, later gray

Gaffer Gamgee was the father of Samwise Gamgee, who was more properly called 'Hamfast'. He presumably acquired the name 'Gaffer' later in his life, because it implies a person of advanced years. This was certainly true of Hamfast, who was old enough to remember Bilbo's return from Erebor, and was no less than ninety-two years old when his son Sam left the Shire with Frodo.

'Gaffer' has another meaning, too, which is no doubt also relevant. In British slang, a 'gaffer' is a foreman, a person who supervises a job. At the time of Bilbo's Birthday Party, we're told that Hamfast, who was then seventy-five, oversaw the gardening at Bag End, but was helped by his son Sam. In that sense, then, Gaffer Gamgee actually was a 'gaffer'.

The name may have been inspired by Joseph Gamgee, the inventor of "Gamgee Tissue" (better known as cotton wool) who was known to have lived opposite Tolkien on Stirling Road, Birmingham, England.