Lalia Clayhanger

From Tolkien Gateway
Lalia Clayhanger
"Lalia Took" by Gregor Roffalski
Biographical Information
Other namesLalia the Great
Lalia the Fat
LocationGreat Smials
BirthS.R. 1283
DeathS.R. 1402 (aged 119)
Great Smials
FamilyClayhanger Family
SpouseFortinbras Took II
Physical Description
GalleryImages of Lalia Clayhanger

Lalia Took, née Clayhanger, was the wife of Thain Fortinbras Took II.



Lalia was born in S.R. 1283, and married Fortinbras Took in S.R. 1314. They had one son, Ferumbras, who was born in 1316 before Fortinbras became Thain in 1339. In accordance with Took family tradition, Lalia became the head of the family once her husband Fortinbras died in 1380. Ferumbras was unable to find a wife and it was alleged that this was because he could not find someone willing to share a house with Lalia, and Ferumbras was only accorded a small bachelor pad in Great Smials until after Lalia's death.

Lalia long outlived her husband and ruled the Tooks of Great Smials for a further twenty-two years, becoming the great and memorable matriarch of the family known as Lalia the Great (or least courteously by those with less love for her, Lalia the Fat). She was famous for her tremendous girth, which was rumoured to have prevented her attendance of Bilbo Baggins' famous Birthday Party in 1401.[1]


In her later - and fattest - years it was her immobility rather than age which was the biggest problem for her so she went around in a wheelchair. In particular, she liked to be wheeled to the Great Door in the mornings so she could experience the fresh air.

She died in 1402 at the grand old age of 119, after her clumsy attendant let Lalia's wheelchair run over the threshold which tipped Lalia down a flight of garden steps. It is rumoured that this attendant was Pippin's sister, Pearl Took, as she was excluded from the celebrations of Ferumbras's accession to Thain, but the family tried to keep the details to themselves. However, shortly after Lalia's demise, she was seen with a priceless pearl necklace, believed to be a Took heirloom, implying she may have been rewarded for the "accident". [1]


"Lalia" is the latinized form of the classical Greek word λαλιά meaning "speech".[2][3]


The Old Took[4]
S.R. 1190 - S.R. 1320
Isumbras IV[4]
S.R. 1238 - S.R. 1339
S.R. 1283 - S.R. 1402
Fortinbras II[4]
S.R. 1278 - S.R. 1380
Ferumbras III[4]
S.R. 1316 - S.R. 1415


  1. 1.0 1.1 J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 214, (undated, written late 1958 or early 1959)
  2. -laila at (accessed 15 May 2011)
  3. -laila at (accessed 15 May 2011)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix C, "Took of Great Smials"