Tom Bombadil, Oldest and Fatherless

So I mentioned in the chat tonight that there's a theory out there that Tom Bombadil is actually an ancient and menacing being of unimaginable power. Here's the link to the theory so that you don't have to scroll through the crowdcast chat for it:


  • That's a really compelling argument! I agree that Tom isn't benevolent, at least not in the same way other benevolent characters in Middle Earth would seek to do good. But neither do I think Tom is malevolent. I don't think Tom seeks to pursue any particular agenda, because he's wild. The huorns aren't inherently evil (nor good), as the ents once tamed them - their nature is wilderness, and Tom appears to embody that.

    If that's the case, though, I can't cleanly reconcile why he helps the hobbits. Maybe he just felt like helping them, because his wild nature means he does whatever he wants at any given time? Maybe it's simply that he recognises that they don't belong in the Old Forest because they're too tied into civil ways, and he wants them to move on out of the wilderness?

    Honestly, I don't think we're meant to know, and I don't believe Tolkien himself even pinned down who or what Tom is in his own mind. He's meant to be an enigma.
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