Brrokk's Tour of some of Middle Earth's Oddities

This tour takes in some of the strange and unexpected features in LOTRO's Middle Earth. Members of Room for Improvement followed the tour on 19th September 2013, and screenshots are from that occasion. Many of the screenshots were supplied by Celulf.

The best place to start is at Thorin's Hall, which has a swift-travel link from Bree.

1. The Ered Luin Snowman

From Thorin's Hall, ride South and turn off the road to the left, to location 17.7S, 102W. These days there are many snowmen in Middle Earth but this one was one of the first. As far as I know it has been here from the very first Shadows of Angmar days, and I don't know why it was placed here. Clearly it was built by elves, because dwarves wouldn't have been able to position its head!


2. The Bird and Baby

Ride to Michel Delving to visit the Bird and Baby inn. This is a nice ride, so Celulf shows some pictures on the route. While in Oxford Tolkien belonged to a literary group called the Inklings. They met in the Eagle and Child pub in Oxford, which they referred to as the Bird and Baby. That's why it's here in his Middle Earth.


Dwarf port

Shire bridge


Bird & Baby

3. The Inklings

Go inside the inn and round to the room at the back on the left. Here are three hobbits with unusual names. In the Inklings group, Tolkien's friends included C.S. "Jack" Lewis, Owen Barfield and Charles Williams; also notable authors. Here they are. The room they had in the Oxford pub was called the "Rabbit Room". It's not named here, but there is an actual rabbit sitting in the corner.

At the bar, Carlo Blagrove offers many interesting drinks including Old Winyards; a favourite of both Bilbo and Frodo.

Why isn't Tolkien himself represented here? You can find Ronald Dwale at Dwaling, who gives related quests. One thing he will ask you to do is tell his friends here that he's going to be late for their meeting. When you have that quest, you find them here discussing his absence and saying that they hope he "hasn't got caught up in one of his stories".




4. Michel Devling Statue

Outside the Bird and Baby, see the statue at the centre of Michel Delving. The bounders have been restoring it recently. It shows the Fallohide brothers Marcho and Blancho, who came from Bree and colonised the Shire by permission of king Arthedain at Fornost, in the year 1601TA (Third Age). This became year 1SR (Shire Reckoning).

March & Blancho

5. Bag End

Ride to Hobbiton and up the hill to find Bag End. It has just been sold to the Sackville-Bagginses, and they are now moving in. You can go inside but only partway in because of all their packing cases. It's fun to compare the layout with the description at the start of The Hobbit. Lobelia and Lotho Sackville-Baggins are gossiping (or arguing?) on the front doorstep. It's Lotho who is destined to cause much of the trouble in the Shire by secretly sending pipeweed south, attracting the attention of Saruman.

Bag End

Bag End

6. Brockenborings

Ride to Brockenborings. Here we find a statue commemorating the Battle of Green Fields when goblins invaded the Shire in 2747TA. Bandobras Bullroarer led the defence, and completed the victory by beheading the goblin chief Golfimbul. The Hobbit describes how he knocked off Golfimbul's head which landed in a rabbit hole; he thereby won the battle and invented the game of golf at the same time.

Bandobras Bullroarer & Golfimbul

7. Evendim

Ride north to Evendim. (Possibly visiting Ronald Dwale at the glassblowers' camp near Dwaling on the way). From Tinnudir, swim to the small island south and west of Tyl Ruinen. Here it's possible to meet Floid and Dewitt (for the deed), and also find this sandcastle. No-one knows who made it, but this is a nice place to relax.






8. The Cat House

Finally we visit Bree and head up the Scholars' Stair to find a house with a cat sitting outside. Inside we see the rather worrying Cat House. It's not clear who keeps all these cats, but it there must be a story behind it. (This is one of the destinations for a chicken-play quest).

Cat house


I hope everyone enjoyed that tour. There are sure to be many other oddities in Middle Earth; these are just some of my favourites.

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