Tookish Hearted

What Does it Mean to be Tookish Hearted?

If I think that that you are “Tookish Hearted” or that you have a “Tookish Heart” I mean that as a great compliment.

The term Tookish comes from the extraordinary book The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien. I highly encourage you to read that book, or if nothing else watch Peter Jackson’s excellent movie The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.

I first read The Hobbit as a young child and the uplifting themes in it were very helpful & inspiring to me as I navigated a very dark childhood.

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Bilbo Baggins Had Both Took and Baggins Ancestry

Bilbo Baggins is one of the main characters in the Hobbit and Bilbo’s ancestry is a very important element early on in that story.

Belladonna Took was Bilbo Baggins’ Mother. She was from the “Took” family and when she was young, she married Bungo Baggins. Bungo was of course from the “Baggins” family.

Bilbo ended with up both Took and Baggins ancestry.

Tooks in a nutshell were looked down on by the Bagginses because they did very inappropriate things like go on adventures.

Bagginses on the other hand were seen as well to do and respectable, as well as very predictable. Generally speaking, they never had any adventures or did anything unexpected.

Tookish Hearted

I am Looking For Someone to Share in an Adventure

One day Bilbo ran into Gandalf who told him “I am looking for someone to share in an adventure that I am arranging, and it’s very difficult to find anyone.”

Prior to that fateful day Bilbo was considered a very proper and respectable Baggins for his polite disposition and aversion to anything out of the ordinary. In the eyes of his neighbors, he originally seemed just like his father, a solid, sensible, unadventurous, and respectable Baggins.

“…it’s very difficult to find anyone.” – Gandalf

Bilbo’s reply to Gandalf was:

I should think so—in these parts! We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner! I can’t think what anybody sees in them …”

Later that very evening Bilbo ends up having quite an amazing and upsetting dinner with Gandalf and 13 dwarves.

Tookish Hearted

Bilbo Has a Struggle That Many of us Have

As I mentioned – for Bagginses it was considered taboo to seek out adventures and excitement. Predictability and routine were the celebrated expectation. Bilbo had until now lived up to that expectation.

However – likely due to his Tookish ancestry Bilbo also enjoys reading stories about elves and far off lands. As a young hobbit he was very imaginative and he loved Gandalf’s fireworks.

Bilbo’s struggle – will he do the “right” thing and say no this the dangerous adventure he has been invited to be a part of, or will he break the rules per say and say “Yes!” and leave both his home and the comfortable, boring life he has known so far.

This struggle is a recurring theme throughout the both the book and the movie.

It is also a struggle that many of us – myself included – have had.

Tookish Hearted

The Next Morning

The morning following that upsetting dinner Bilbo wakes up to find that the dwarves have already headed out on their quest.

Bilbo is relieved at first but as he sits in the quiet and ponders to himself, he realizes that he can’t pass up this opportunity to go have an adventure of his own.

As it says in The Hobbit “Then something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.”

 All my life I have run into many people who sadly seem to only have Baggins ancestry.

A small number of us – have both Took and Baggins ancestry.

I have found that those who ride shotgun with me and follow my adventures have been listening to their Tookish heart just like Bilbo did.

I very much enjoy the community of people who follow along the adventures I have as I continue the epic journey I am on. You won’t find Baggins hearted people in this community, just us Tookish hearted people.

By the way – During the dinner that Bilbo, Gandalf, and the Dwarves have at the beginning of the Hobbit Gandalf gets challenged about whether or not Bilbo is a suitable candidate for the adventure that they are about to embark on.

Gandalf says this about Bilbo – There is a lot more in him than you guess, and a deal more than he has any idea about himself.”

 That is true about all of us who have Tookish hearts.


Steven Shomler

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