Did Tolkien ever explain what about Bilbo was so special that he could resist the power of the Ring for so many years? --Ebakunin 13:40, 24 April 2006 (EDT)
Quite a few characters throughout LotR stated that hobbits in general are very resistant to the Dark Powers. In an early draft of the Fellowship, Boromir asks Frodo if maybe the power one yields while wearing the ring only reflects their own minds. This could explain why Isildur, Smeagol/Gollum, Bilbo, etc. disappear, hiding from their enemies, instead of imbuing them with superhuman strength. That conversation betweem Boromir and Frodo is The History of Middle Earth, the exact one escapes me, sorry.--Quidon88 14:20, 8 February 2007 (EST)
- Frodo fell under the Ring's sway quicker primarily because (1) The power of Sauron had grown greater, (2) He came near to and entered the Land of the Dark Lord, and (3) He was mentally and physically exhausted. The Ring did not work so strongly on him or Bilbo during those years in Hobbiton. Bilbo received it in an honorable way (as opposed to Sméagol's murder), he kept it far from the reach of the Dark Lord, and he did not comprehend its power. I hope that explains it thoroughly enough. I believe I could find texts to back up these statements, if you wish. --Narfil Palùrfalas 17:45, 8 February 2007 (EST)
- Among the physical stresses was the injury by the poisoned blade of the Witch-king (touching it made Glorfindel shudder) and the bite by Shelob along the way. That he managed to resist the lure of the ring until the very end is actually quite remarkable-- as stated above he was bearing the ring INSIDE Mordor within visible range of Sauron and his minions. Remember, part of Sauron existed within the ring and it had a 'life of its own'-- as such there was not much it could do within the Shire.
Cheers. Glorfindel Mk. II 14:41, 19 October 2007 (EDT)