From Tolkien Gateway

Brandagamba is the original Westron version of the hobbit-name translated into English as Brandybuck.


It contains the element branda- 'borderland' (referring to Buckland being on the eastern edge of the Shire), but also evokes Branda-nîn, 'border-water' (the early hobbitish name for the Brandywine river).[1]

The second half of the compound, -gamba, is a re-occurrence from the older name Zaragamba (or Oldbuck in translation), in the sense of a male deer or ram.

The river Branda-nîn was later jokingly altered to Bralda-hîm, 'heady ale'. According to Tolkien, "only a very bold hobbit would have ventured to call the Master of Buckland braldagamba in his hearing". [1]

Note on translation

While "Marchbuck" would be a literal translation of the name, it would lose the traditional connection with Brandywine, apparent in the actual Brandagamba-Branda-nîn. Tolkien rather translated the name as "Brandybuck" in order to retain this connection.[1]

See also