Letter 27

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Description of Bilbo Baggins:

“I picture a fairly human figure, not a kind of ‘fairy’ rabbit as some of my British reviewers seem to fancy: fattish in the stomach, shortish in the leg. A round, jovial face; ears only slightly pointed and ‘elvish’; hair short and curling (brown). The feet from the ankles down, covered with brow hairy fur. Clothing: green velvet breeches; red or yellow waistcoat; brown or green jacket; gold (or brass) buttons; a dark green hood and cloak (belonging to a dwarf). Actual size … say about three feet or three feet six inches. There is in the text no mention of his acquiring of boots. There should be! It has dropped out somehow or other in the various revisions—the bootings occurred at Rivendell; and he was again bootless after leaving Rivendell on the way home. But since leathery soles, and well-brushed furr feet are a feature of essential hobbitness, he ought really to appear unbooted, except in special illustrations of episodes.”

GARMENTS; PHYSICAL; SHIRE; RIVENDELL; HOBBITS; 3A