From Tolkien Gateway
Eytan Eylul Guler - Golfimbul the Wargrider.jpg
"Golfimbul the Wargrider" by Eytan Eylul Guler
Biographical Information
TitlesKing of the Goblins of Mount Gram
LocationMount Gram
AffiliationOrcs of Mount Gram
LanguagePresumably Orkish
DeathT.A. 2747
Greenfields (Northfarthing)
Notable forBeing in the first "game" of Golf
Physical Description
GalleryImages of Golfimbul

Golfimbul was a king of the Orcs of Mount Gram.[1]

History[edit | edit source]

Golfimbul led a band of Orcs in an invasion of the Shire in T.A. 2747[2]. Bandobras Took met Golfimbul in the Northfarthing of the Shire and defeated him in the Battle of Greenfields. During the battle Bandobras, who was large enough to ride a horse, charged at Golfimbul and knocked off his head with a club. Golfimbul's head flew through the air for 100 yards and went down a rabbit hole. It is said that this is how the game of golf was invented.[1]

Etymology[edit | edit source]

"Fimbul" is Old Norse for "great".[3]

Robert Foster notes that the connection with the English word "golf" suggests that the name is either fictitious or translated Westron.[4]

Other versions of the legendarium[edit | edit source]

At an early stage in writing The Hobbit J.R.R. Tolkien used the name Fingolfin for the Goblin-leader, which also contained the word "golf" for the joke about the origin of the game (although not as prominently as in "Golfimbul").[5] Many years later, in the never-finished 1960 rewrite of the story, Tolkien intended to change the name to Gulfimbul.[6] John D. Rateliff speculated that this was either a further evolution of Tolkien's languages or because he was dropping the golf-joke reference.[7] The 1960 revision was an effort to "upgrade" The Hobbit to the same epic level as The Lord of the Rings.

Portrayal in adaptations[edit | edit source]

Films[edit | edit source]

2012: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey:

In trying to convince Bilbo of his Tookishness, Gandalf tells about the story of the Battle of Greenfields, referring to Golfimbul as a Goblin-king.

Games[edit | edit source]

2007: The Lord of the Rings Online:

In Brockenborings there is a wooden statue depicting Bandobras standing in a golf pose over Golfimbul's head. Every Spring, the Shire celebrates Bullroarer Took Day when the Hobbits place tankards of the drink under his statue in his honor.
The epic book prologue in the Shire involves the player trying to thwart Lubach, who believes that he is the descendent of Golfimbul, from invading the Shire with a group of Goblins. He dwells in a landmark in the Greenfields referred to as Golfimbul's Hole.


  1. 1.0 1.1 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "An Unexpected Party"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, "The Third Age"
  3. Wikipedia:Fimbulwinter#Etymology
  4. Robert Foster, The Complete Guide to Middle-earth, p. 167
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien, John D. Rateliff (ed.), The History of The Hobbit, Mr. Baggins, The First Phase, "The Bladorthin Typescript", p. 39
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien, John D. Rateliff (ed.), The History of The Hobbit, Return to Bag-End, "The Fifth Phase", "New Chapter I. A Well-Planned Party", p. 776
  7. J.R.R. Tolkien, John D. Rateliff (ed.), The History of The Hobbit, Return to Bag-End, "The Fifth Phase", "New Chapter I. A Well-Planned Party", note 24, p. 785

Died: T.A. 2747
Preceded by:
King of the Goblins of Mount Gram
unknown - T.A. 2747
Followed by:
unknown (possibly none)