Tri-lingual Hobbit re-read: Chapter 1

As every Tolkien fan on the Net knows, we’ve just had ourselves the first glorious new Hobbit trailer! Between this and getting the beautiful, beautiful Blu-Rays of the extended editions of The Lord of the Rings, I am very, very much in a Tolkien mood now.

Those of you who have been with me since 2004 or so (on LJ) may remember that I’ve had this German edition of The Hobbit for some time. Now that I also have a French edition, not to mention the shiny new enhanced ebook edition of the book on my iPad, I decided that it’s high time to enjoy a re-read of the story. And because I’m feeling ambitious, I’m doing it in three languages at once! With these editions!

Editions of The Hobbit
Editions of The Hobbit

Mind you, it ain’t like I expect to really understand much of either the French or the German–that’s why I’ve got the English text handy. I want to go through the translated editions mostly to just get a sense of the rhythm of the language in each, and to see what things I do actually comprehend at first glance, or with judicious consultation of my French or German verb books or dictionaries.

Here are things I’ve observed going through Chapter 1: An Unexpected Party!

Continue reading “Tri-lingual Hobbit re-read: Chapter 1”

Hobbit news!

Word is going around the net that The Hobbit starts filming in July! Tolkien fans, please to be joining me in squee that Sir Ian McKellen will be reprising his role as Gandalf.

However, that leaves plenty more important roles to be filled. I’m of course crossing fingers for Hugo Weaving to come back as Elrond and Andy Serkis to be Gollum, because I cannot frankly imagine anyone else in either role. Cate Blanchett for Galadriel would also be sweet.

But let’s talk the most important role: Bilbo himself. Who should play him? Ian Holm is too old to play the younger Bilbo required in the story. And who should play the dwarves? It’s highly unlikely that John Rhys-Davies would show up as his own previous character’s father, Gloin, given the issues he had with the dwarf makeup during the LotR trilogy. But surely the role of Thorin Oakenshield would require somebody of equal heartiness and presence.

Who would y’all want to see play Bard and the Elvenking? And how about this deeply critical question: who should be the voice of Smaug?

Hrmm. I really need more LotR-related icons, preferably some involving hobbits. :)