If I am spared

Longtimer

Member
In episode 210 lots of talk about Bilbo saying "if I am spared" in reference to writing the second book and his realization of how old he is. One concept that was not raised is whether Bilbo may be realizing as Gollum realizes that if the Ring is destroyed his life might end with it. If he has thought of this and he might have thought of this possibility, he clearly would not want to burden Frodo with this as it would add another impediment and measure of guilt to Frodo in carrying out his mission.

Does the above make any sense or am I reading too much into the line.
 

Rachel Port

Well-Known Member
The difference between Bilbo and Gollum is a few hundred years both of age and Ring ownership, so I don't know if that's an actual possibility. He might suspect at this point that his years would descend on him all at once if the Ring is destroyed. If that's the case, Gollum's age itself would kill him if the Ring is destroyed.

Sometimes I wonder whether Bilbo actually can die naturally after 60 years with the Ring, which would be a reason for him to be allowed to go to Valinor.
 

Longtimer

Member
Based on how much Bilbo ages when the Ring is destroyed, he seems likely to die whether in Middle Earth or Valinor.

His trip to Valinor seems a reward for his action in bringing about the end of the Ring and a chance for him to live his last years in peace free of all the hurt that being exposed to the evils of the Ring would have done to him. In a sense, the Valar are paying him back for shouldering the burden they or Iluvatar laid on him when he "by chance" found the Ring.
 

JJ48

Well-Known Member
Whether Gollum realized it or not, his belief that he would perish when the Ring did may have been some kind of foresight. After all, it was the volcano that did him in, not the onset of years, presumably. (Though his death happens offscreen in the books, I find it hard to imagine any scenario in which Gollum survives long enough to actually witness the Ring's destruction.) Since such was not to be Bilbo's fate, he may have had some sense of dying from old age soon after the Ring went into the Fire, but I'm not sure he would have had the same sense of his death coinciding exactly with the Ring's demise.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
Based on how much Bilbo ages when the Ring is destroyed, he seems likely to die whether in Middle Earth or Valinor.

His trip to Valinor seems a reward for his action in bringing about the end of the Ring and a chance for him to live his last years in peace free of all the hurt that being exposed to the evils of the Ring would have done to him. In a sense, the Valar are paying him back for shouldering the burden they or Iluvatar laid on him when he "by chance" found the Ring.
I am of the opinion the effect of the ring hinders his dying properly - a thing that has to be remedied preferably before he dies - as Sam, who had the ring only for a brief time, and seems almost unaffected by it, seems to get the same grace too. Otherwise there would not have been such a big fuss made about the Numenoreans going to Valinor - as being such a crime warranting bending the Earth round - and now plenty of mortals being allowed to go there without any problems. I think there were some problems with Isildur after he went to Mandos. Sauron is an Ainu and Aniur are angelic beings as such capable to mess up a default mortal setup considerably.
 

Anthony Lawther

Well-Known Member
Well, the crime of the Numenoreans was to go there against an express ban, the stated reason for the ban being that Valinor was too much for mortals. The ‘many’ Mortals being allowed to go to Valinor now are the former Ringbearers and Gimli. I think in every case the allowance into Valinor was viewed like surgery: Will the benefits of the allowance outweigh the downside?
Bilbo, Sam, and Gimli all go towards the ends of their lives (so minor loss for major gain), and Frodo might have considered suicide if he had to endure several decades more of periodic suffering.
Perhaps Gimli was given a special dispensation as a reward for his participation in the events at the end of the Third Age. I wonder what the meeting of Gimli and Aulë looked like.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
Well, the crime of the Numenoreans was to go there against an express ban, the stated reason for the ban being that Valinor was too much for mortals. The ‘many’ Mortals being allowed to go to Valinor now are the former Ringbearers and Gimli. I think in every case the allowance into Valinor was viewed like surgery: Will the benefits of the allowance outweigh the downside?
Bilbo, Sam, and Gimli all go towards the ends of their lives (so minor loss for major gain), and Frodo might have considered suicide if he had to endure several decades more of periodic suffering.
Perhaps Gimli was given a special dispensation as a reward for his participation in the events at the end of the Third Age. I wonder what the meeting of Gimli and Aulë looked like.
I always thought Gimli going there was more a grace to Aulë than to himself. ;-) He is his most famous dwarf and I am sure Aulë is mighty proud of him.
 

Anthony Lawther

Well-Known Member
Maybe, but if the Dwarven mythology is correct, then Mahal (Aulë) can visit Gimli in the Halls set aside for the Dwarven spirits after his death.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
Maybe, but if the Dwarven mythology is correct, then Mahal (Aulë) can visit Gimli in the Halls set aside for the Dwarven spirits after his death.
Just his spirit. No way to pat him on the back then.

And Aulë does need a cheer up. Was not Sauron his pupil? He needs to see that some of his "children" are able to get things right after all.
 
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Anthony Lawther

Well-Known Member
Just his spirit. No way to pat him on the back then.

And Aulë does need a cheer up. Was not Sauron his pupil? He needs to see that some of his "children" are able to get things right after all.
Both Sauron and Saruman were of the people of Aulë, so yes some cheering up is definitely needed. He nearly fell into ruin with the creation of the Dwarves, so I think he would have hoped that his example would have served to show his people what appropriate humility looks like; but then maybe that incident was a private affair between just him and Ilúvatar, meaning it didn’t give the same teaching opportunity.
 
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