TOLKIEN’S VIEW OF TOME BOMBADIL. The wikipedia article on Tom Bombadil quotes Tolkien at length on his view of the character. Tolkien notes that Tom is not important to the narrative (probably the main reason that the various adaptations have done without him). He gives a possible explanation of Bombadil’s failure to exercise power to curtail the evil in his domain: Bombadil represents a “natural pacifist view”. In the end, Tolkien does not have a ready explanation of why Tom Bombadil belongs in the book, saying: “he represents something that I feel important, though I would not be prepared to analyse the feeling precisely.” I submit that if an author of Tolkien’s stature has a gut feeling that something belongs in a book, that feeling should be honored.

Let Tolkien have the last word: “And even in a mythical Age there must be some enigmas, as there always are. Tom Bombadil is one (intentionally).”

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