Bilbo hosts a grand party
Event Type: General
Age: 3rd Age - The Stewards
Date: September 22, 3001
An event in Bilbo's Farewell Party; see that entry for an overview:
Then Thursday, September the 22nd, actually dawned. The sun got up, the clouds vanished, flags were unfurled and the fun began.
Bilbo Baggins called it a party, but it was really a variety of entertainments rolled into one.... Bilbo met the guests (and additions) at the new white gate in person. He gave away presents to all and sundry — the latter were those who went out again by a back way and came in again by the gate....
On this occasion the presents were unusually good.... There were toys the like of which they had never seen before, all beautiful and some obviously magical. Many of them had indeed been ordered a year before, and had come all the way from the Mountain and from Dale, and were of real dwarf-make.
When every guest had been welcomed..., there were songs, dances, music, games, and, of course, food and drink. There were three official meals: lunch, tea, and dinner (or supper).... At other times there were merely lots of people eating and drinking — continuously from elevenses until six-thirty, when the fireworks started.
The fireworks were by Gandalf: they were not only brought by him, but designed and made by him; and the special effects, set pieces, and flights of rockets were let off by him.... They were all superb....
And there was also one last surprise.... Out flew a red-golden dragon... terribly life-like...; there was a roar, and he whizzed three times over the heads of the crowd. They all ducked, and many fell flat on their faces. The dragon passed like an express train, turned a somersault, and burst over Bywater with a deafening explosion.
'That is the signal for supper!' said Bilbo. The pain and alarm vanished at once, and the prostrate hobbits leaped to their feet. There was a splendid supper for everyone; for everyone, that is, except those invited to the special family dinner-party. This was held in the great pavilion with the tree. The invitations were limited to twelve dozen....
All the one hundred and forty-four guests expected a pleasant feast; though they rather dreaded the after-dinner speech of their host.... The guests were not disappointed: they had a very pleasant feast, in fact an engrossing entertainment: rich, abundant, varied, and prolonged....
After the feast... came the Speech....
[Finally], [Bilbo] said, I wish to make an ANNOUNCEMENT.... I regret to announce that... I am leaving NOW. GOOD-BYE!
He stepped down and vanished. There was a blinding flash of light, and the guests all blinked. When they opened their eyes Bilbo was nowhere to be seen....
The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 1, A Long-expected Party
Elena Tiriel 21Sep07