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The Road Goes Ever On

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The Road Goes Ever On, also known as The Old Walking Song, is a song by Bilbo Baggins while he would be on the road; verses of it are sung at various places in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

In The HobbitEdit

The original version of the song is recited by Bilbo during his return journey to the Shire.[1]

Roads go ever ever on,
Over rock and under tree,
By caves where never sun has shone,
By streams that never find the sea;
Over snow by winter sown,
And through the merry flowers of June,
Over grass and over stone,
And under mountains in the moon.

Roads go ever ever on
Under cloud and under star,
Yet feet that wandering have gone
Turn at last to home afar.
Eyes that fire and sword have seen
And horror in the halls of stone
Look at last on meadows green
And trees and hills they long have known.

In The Lord of the RingsEdit

Bilbo recites another version of this song when he leaves the Shire and is off for Rivendell.[2]

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way,
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

The last version of the song is recited by Bilbo in Rivendell after Frodo and the others have returned to their journey.[3]

The Road goes ever on and on
Out from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
Let others follow it who can!
Let them a journey new begin,
But I at last with weary feet
Will turn towards the lighted inn,
My evening-rest and sleep to meet.

Other AppearancesEdit

Other AdaptionsEdit

The Road Goes Ever On, taking its name from the above, is a collection of sheet music by Donald Swann for poetry presented by Tolkien in his Middle-earth literature. It was first published in 1967.

Although the book can at first sight seem mostly useful by musicians (particularly piano and guitar players), it has been found to have a wider use than this, allowing readers to understand the cultures of the various mythological beings presented in Middle-earth better, and helping linguists analyse Tolkien's poetry. For example, it contains one of the longest samples of the language Quenya.

The second edition of The Road Goes Ever On, published in 1978, included the poem Bilbo's Last Song.

The third edition, published in 1993 and likely the last, comes with additional poetry and also a CD with recordings for the entire song cycle.

ReferencesEdit

  1. The Hobbit, Chapter XIX: "The Last Stage"
  2. The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, Book One, Chapter I: "A Long-expected Party"
  3. The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, Book Six, Chapter VI: "Many Partings"
J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth legendarium

Works published during his lifetime
The Hobbit | The Lord of the Rings | The Adventures of Tom Bombadil | The Road Goes Ever On

Posthumous publications
The Silmarillion | Unfinished Tales | The History of Middle-earth (12 volumes) | Bilbo's Last Song | The Children of Húrin

Lists of LOTR Wiki articles about Middle-earth
by category | by name | writings | characters | peoples | rivers | realms | ages

External linksEdit

This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at The Road Goes Ever On. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License 3.0 License.

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