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Character Bios

Nob

Location(s): Bree

Race/Species: Hobbit

Title(s):
servant at The Prancing Pony

Dates: late Third Age

Description:

A hobbit servant at The Prancing Pony in Bree.
'Hi! Nob!' [Mr. Butterbur] shouted. 'Where are you, you woolly-footed slow-coach? Nob!'

'Coming, sir! Coming!' A cheery-looking hobbit bobbed out of a door, and seeing the travellers, stopped short and stared at them with great interest.

'Where's Bob?' asked the landlord. 'You don't know? Well find him! Double sharp! I haven't got six legs, nor six eyes neither! Tell Bob there's five ponies that have to be stabled. He must find room somehow.' Nob trotted off with a grin and a wink.

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 9, At the Sign of the Prancing Pony

'Here is a nice little parlour!' [Butterbur] said.... 'If you want anything, ring the hand-bell, and Nob will come. If he don't come, ring and shout!'....

But Nob, the hobbit servant, came bustling in long before they thought of ringing. He brought candles and a tray full of plates.

'Will you be wanting anything to drink, masters?' he asked. 'And shall I show you the bedrooms, while your supper is got ready?'

They were washed and in the middle of good deep mugs of beer when Mr. Butterbur and Nob came in again. In a twinkling the table was laid. There was... good plain food, as good as the Shire could show....

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 9, At the Sign of the Prancing Pony

At that moment there came a knock at the door. Mr. Butterbur had arrived with candles, and behind him was Nob with cans of hot water....

'I've come to bid you good night,' said the landlord, putting the candles on the table. 'Nob! Take the water to the rooms!'

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 10, Strider

'These black men,' said the landlord.... 'They're looking for Baggins, and if they mean well, then I'm a hobbit.... Nob, he came and told me that two black men were at the door asking for a hobbit called Baggins. Nob's hair was all stood on end.'

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 10, Strider

'It's a pity Mr. Baggins drew attention to himself this evening.... The story of that Mr. Bilbo's going off has been heard before tonight.... Even our Nob has been doing some guessing in his slow pate: and there are others in Bree quicker in the uptake than he is.'....

'But..., they won't get in The Pony so easy. Don't you worry.... Nob'll say no word. No black man shall pass my doors, while I can stand on my legs. Me and my folk'll keep watch tonight....'

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 10, Strider

Merry came in with a rush followed by Nob. He... gasped: 'I have seen them...! Black Riders!'....

'I found him, sir,' put in Nob. 'Mr. Butterbur sent me out with a lantern. I went down to West-gate, and then back up towards South-gate. Just nigh Bill Ferny's house I thought I could see something in the Road. I couldn't swear to it, but it looked to me as if two men was stooping over something, lifting it. I gave a shout, but where I got up to the spot there was no signs of them, and only Mr. Brandybuck lying by the roadside. He seemed to be asleep. "I thought I had fallen into deep water," he says to me, when I shook him. Very queer he was, and as soon as I had roused him, he got up and ran back here like a hare.'

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 10, Strider

'Stay here, and do not go to your rooms!.... But first Nob and I will fetch your luggage.'

... Strider and Nob returned.

'Well Masters,' said Nob, 'I've ruffled up the clothes and put in a bolster down the middle of each bed. And I made a nice imitation of your head with a brown woollen mat, Mr. Bag — Underhill, sir,' he added with a grin.

Pippin laughed. 'Very life-like!' he said....

'Good night to you,' said Nob, and went off to take his part in the watch on the doors.

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 10, Strider

'There is one crumb of comfort,' said Merry, '... we can have breakfast while we wait.... Let's get hold of Nob!'

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 10, Strider

They said farewell to Nob and Bob, and took leave of Mr. Butterbur with many thanks....

They tramped off, anxious and downhearted.... Sam was chewing an apple thoughtfully. He had a pocket full of them: a parting present from Nob and Bob.

The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 11, A Knife in the Dark

At last they came to The Prancing Pony.... They rang the bell, and Nob came to the door, and opened it a crack and peeped through; and when he saw them standing under the lamp he gave a cry of surprise.

'Mr. Butterbur! Master!' he shouted. 'They've come back!'

'Oh have they? I'll learn them,' came Butterbur's voice, and out he came with a rush, and he had a club in his hand. But when he saw who they were he stopped short, and the black scowl on his face changed to wonder and delight.

'Nob, you woolly-pated ninny!' he cried. 'Can't you give old friends their names? You shouldn't go scaring me like that, with times as they are.... Come in!.... And I'll see what can be done about supper...; but I'm short-handed at present. Hey, Nob you slowcoach! Tell Bob! Ah, but there I'm forgetting, Bob's gone: goes home to his folk at nightfall now. Well, take the guests' ponies to the stables, Nob!'

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 5, Homeward Bound

'I'm for bed, and I've no doubt you'll be glad of your beds too. Hey, Nob!' he called, going to the door. 'Nob, you slowcoach!'

'Now!' he said to himself, slapping his forehead. 'Now what does that remind me of?'....

'Now where was I? Nob, stables, ah! that was it. I've something that belongs to you. If you recollect Bill Ferny and the horsethieving: his pony as you bought, well, it's here. Come back all of itself.... It was as shaggy as an old dog and as lean as a clothes-rail, but it was alive. Nob's looked after it.'

The Return of the King, LoTR Book 6, Ch 5, Homeward Bound

Contributors:
Elena Tiriel 21Apr08

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