HASA Resources

Timeline Event

Saruman's ruffians occupy the Shire (estimated date)

Event Type: Military/Strategic

Age: 3rd Age - Ring War

Date: October 1, 3018

Description:

'Saruman had secret dealings with someone in the Shire, I guess.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 9, Flotsam and Jetsam

'It all began with Pimple, as we call him,' said Farmer Cotton; 'and it began as soon as you'd gone off, Mr. Frodo....

'[It] seems he'd been selling a lot o' the best leaf, and sending it away quietly for a year or two. But at the end o' last year he began sending away loads of stuff, not only leaf. Things began to get short, and winter coming on, too. Folk got angry, but he had his answer. A lot of Men, ruffians mostly, came with great waggons, some to carry off the goods south-away, and others to stay. And more came. And before we knew where we were they were planted here and there all over the Shire, and were felling trees and digging and building themselves sheds and houses just as they liked. At first goods and damage was paid for by Pimple; but soon they began lording it around and taking what they wanted.'

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 8, The Scouring of the Shire

'There's sometimes fifty of them in their sheds up Hobbiton way; but they go out from there roving round, thieving or "gathering" as they call it.'....

'There's a good few down south in Longbottom and by Sarn Ford, I hear; and some more lurking in the Woody End; and they've sheds at Waymeet. And then there's the Lockholes, as they call 'em: the old storage-tunnels at Michel Delving that they've made into prisons for those as stand up to them. Still I reckon there's not above three hundred of them in the Shire all told, and maybe less.'

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 8, The Scouring of the Shire

'Well now, what about a smoke, while you tell us what has been happening in the Shire?' [Pippin] said.

'There isn't no pipe-weed now,' said Hob; 'at least only for the Chief's men. All the stocks seem to have gone. We do hear that waggon-loads of it went away down the old road out of the Southfarthing, over Sarn Ford way. That would be the end o' last year, after you left. But it had been going away quietly before that, in a small way. That Lotho —'

'Now you shut up, Hob Hayward!' cried several of the others. 'You know talk o' that sort isn't allowed. The Chief will hear of it, and we'll all be in trouble.'

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 8, The Scouring of the Shire


Notes
The date is an estimate, set to follow Frodo's departure from Shire, when the Hobbits enter the Old Forest.

Contributors:
Elena Tiriel 12May05, 25Nov05

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