Gerontius Took

From Tolkien Gateway
Gerontius Took
"Gerontius Took" by Liz Danforth
Biographical Information
Other namesThe Old Took
TitlesThain of the Shire
LocationGreat Smials, Tuckborough
BirthS.R. 1190
RuleS.R. 1248 - 1320 (72 years)
DeathS.R. 1320 (aged 130)
ParentageFortinbras Took I
SpouseAdamanta Chubb
ChildrenIsengrim, Hildigard, Isumbras, Hildigrim, Isembold, Hildifons, Isembard, Hildibrand, Belladonna, Donnamira, Mirabella and Isengar
Physical Description
GalleryImages of Gerontius Took

Gerontius Took (S.R. 1190 - 1320, died aged 130), also known as The Old Took, was a renowned Hobbit and twenty-sixth Thain of the Shire.


Gerontius was the only son of Fortinbras I. He married Adamanta Chubb, who gave birth to twelve children: Isengrim III, Hildigard, Isumbras IV, Hildigrim, Isembold, Hildifons, Isembard, Hildibrand, Belladonna, Donnamira, Mirabella and Isengar.

After the death of his father in 1248, Gerontius became the twenty-sixth Thain of the Shire.[1] He was a friend of Gandalf, who gave him a pair of magic diamond studs[2] and performed firework tricks during Gerontius' midsummer-eve parties.[3][note 1]

Gerontius Took reached the impressive age of 130, which made him the oldest Hobbit until his grandson Bilbo Baggins celebrated his 131st Birthday.[4] He also held the record of most offspring, until Samwise Gamgee bested him with Tom's birth in S.R. 1442.[5]


He was called The Old Took not because of his age, but because of his numerous younger relatives.[6]

The word element geron is Greek for old. Gerontius was also a Latin name of the Late Roman Empire, and is one of the very few Greco-Latin names appearing in Hobbit lore.

Gerontius is rendered as Geraint in Welsh, found as a royal name in The Mabinogion and in Tennyson's Geraint and Enid.[7]


In a letter to Mr. and Mrs. Kloos, Tolkien stated that when he wrote The Hobbit, he had imagined Bilbo's grandfather to be old, because both of his grandparents were around a hundred years old when they died.[6]

Portrayal in adaptations

The Old Took in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

2012: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey:

The Old Took appears in a scene in the Extended Edition, played by Dan Hennah.


  1. Midsummer-eve obviously refers to 1 Lithe.


Gerontius Took
Took Family
Born: S.R. 1190 Died: S.R. 1320
Preceded by:
Fortinbras Took I
26th Thain of The Shire
S.R. 1248 - 1320
Followed by:
Isengrim Took III

Thains of the Shire
Bucca of the Marish (from S.R. 379) · 10 unknown Oldbucks · Gorhendad Oldbuck (until S.R. 740) · Isumbras I (from S.R. 740) · 8 unknown Tooks (includes: Isengrim I · Ferumbras I · Paladin I · Isumbras II) · Isengrim II (S.R. 1083 - 1122) · Isumbras III (1122 - 1159) · Ferumbras II (1159 - 1201) · Fortinbras I (1201 - 1248) · Gerontius (1248 - 1320) · Isengrim III (1320 - 1330) · Isumbras IV (1330 - 1339) · Fortinbras II (1339 - 1380) · Ferumbras III (1380 - 1415) · Paladin II (1415 - 1434) · Peregrin I (1434 - 1484) · Faramir I (from 1484)