Importance Of Songs In The Hobbit

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Music plays an important role in J.R.R Tolkien’s book The Hobbit. It provides the reader with key insight into a character’s role in the story, and the type of creature they are. While there are only a few different songs throughout the story, each one has an important message that pertains to either the characters or the plot. The three different songs sung by the dwarves, elves, and goblins all vary in tone, content, and structure, and play a huge part in the development of the Tolkien’s world. In the beginning of the novel, the dwarves are gathered in Bilbo’s home and are getting ready for their long adventure. In order to help Bilbo understand why they need to embark on their quest, they sing an epic song about days long past. It is very somber, but it also has hints of longing and rage. The ballad switches between past and future tenses, telling the story of how the dwarves of yore used to be a powerful and wealthy race until an evil dragon attacked, causing their people to flee and leave their gold and riches behind. It explains the dwarves’ need for revenge against the dragon Smaug, something long past due. The last stanza reads, “Far over the misty mountains grim, To dungeons deep and caverns dim, We must away, ere break of day, To win our harps and gold from him,” (Tolkien, 16). This verse sets up of the rest of the novel and the climax by explaining what the dwarves’ goal is. The song was probably passed down through many generations, and the need for retribution

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