Bilbo's Ring-induced monologue

Jim Deutch

Well-Known Member
In episode 113, Professor Olsen discussed Bilbo's "ring-induced monologue" where he tells Frodo about how he had wanted to go back to The Shire and bring the Ring to Rivendell himself, to spare Frodo the burden and all, when he first heard that the Enemy wanted it. It was noted that this entirely occurred in the extreme absence of the Ring: Bilbo was in Rivendell and the Ring was in Bag End with Frodo. How could the Ring influence Bilbo over such a distance?

I don't think the Ring has to influence Bilbo over distance: it exerts its influence over time, so to speak.

Possessing the Ring changes you in all sorts of ways, despite keeping your age steady. "Slow to evil", Gandalf says, if the Ringbearer takes the Ring in a spirit of pity, like Bilbo did, but "slow" is not "not at all". I think the Ring is still in Bilbo's head: it doesn't need to be physically present to be the originator of his basic thought patterns because it has drilled them into him over the decades.

Bilbo is damaged. Even he realizes that, after the episode where he asks to see it. The Ring's influence on both Hobbits will last even after it is destroyed. That's why they (spoilers) sail West.

[edit] Now that I've listened to 114, I've heard another whole hour of discussion on this question! My post is pretty much totally redundant: sorry.
 
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Anthony Lawther

Well-Known Member
In episode 113, Professor Olsen discussed Bilbo's "ring-induced monologue" where he tells Frodo about how he had wanted to go back to The Shire and bring the Ring to Rivendell himself, to spare Frodo the burden and all, when he first heard that the Enemy wanted it. It was noted that this entirely occurred in the extreme absence of the Ring: Bilbo was in Rivendell and the Ring was in Bag End with Frodo. How could the Ring influence Bilbo over such a distance?

I don't think the Ring has to influence Bilbo over distance: it exerts its influence over time, so to speak.

Possessing the Ring changes you in all sorts of ways, despite keeping your age steady. "Slow to evil", Gandalf says, if the Ringbearer takes the Ring in a spirit of pity, like Bilbo did, but "slow" is not "not at all". I think the Ring is still in Bilbo's head: it doesn't need to be physically present to be the originator of his basic thought patterns because it has drilled them into him over the decades.

Bilbo is damaged. Even he realizes that, after the episode where he asks to see it. The Ring's influence on both Hobbits will last even after it is destroyed. That's why they (spoilers) sail West.
So, surviving ringbearers suffer from PRSD: Post Ring Stress Disorder.

Just like PTSD, where the source of the trauma doesn't need to be present to have lifelong impacts.
 
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