|"Gerontius Took" by Liz Danforth|
|Other names||The Old Took|
|Titles||Thain of the Shire|
|Location||Great Smials, Tuckborough|
|Birth||S.R. 1190 |
|Rule||S.R. 1248 - 1320 (72 years)|
|Death||S.R. 1320 (aged 130)|
|Parentage||Fortinbras Took I|
|Children||Isengrim, Hildigard, Isumbras, Hildigrim, Isembold, Hildifons, Isembard, Hildibrand, Belladonna, Donnamira, Mirabella and Isengar|
|Gallery||Images of Gerontius Took|
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. He was a friend of Gandalf, who gave him a pair of magic diamond studs and performed firework tricks during Gerontius' midsummer-eve parties.[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. He also held the record of most offspring, until Samwise Gamgee bested him with Tom's birth in S.R. 1442.
He was called The Old Took not because of his age, but because of his numerous younger relatives.
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.
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.
Portrayal in adaptations
- The Old Took appears in a scene in the Extended Edition, played by Dan Hennah.
- Midsummer-eve obviously refers to 1 Lithe.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix C, "Took of Great Smials"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "An Unexpected Party"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, "Out of the Frying-Pan into the Fire"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, "The Grey Havens"
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Appendix C, "The Longfather-tree of Master Samwise"
- Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull (eds), The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, p. 54
- Mark T. Hooker, Tolkien and Welsh, p. 133
Fortinbras Took I
|26th Thain of The Shire|
S.R. 1248 - 1320
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)|