HASA Resources

Places in Middle-earth

Great Smials

Type: Buildings, Halls, Houses

Region: Bree/The Shire

Other Names
the Smials at Tuckborough
the Great Place of the Tooks

Location: The ancestral home of the Took family, in the village of Tuckborough on the western slopes of the Green Hills in the Westfarthing.

Description:

[Said Farmer Cotton,] 'Tooks are lucky, they've got those deep holes in the Green Hills, the Great Smials and all, and the ruffians can't come at 'em; and they won't let the ruffians come on their land.'....

'Good for the Tooks!' cried Pippin. 'But... I am off to the Smials. Anyone coming with me to Tuckborough?'

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

The houses and the holes of Shire-hobbits were often large, and inhabited by large families.... Sometimes, as in the case of the Tooks of Great Smials, or the Brandybucks of Brandy Hall, many generations of relatives lived in (comparative) peace together in one ancestral and many-tunnelled mansion.

The Lord of the Rings, Prologue, Concerning Hobbits

'Yes, it is all very dim, and stuffy, in here,' said Pippin. 'It reminds me, somehow, of the old room in the Great Place of the Tooks away back in the Smials at Tuckborough: a huge place, where the furniture has never been moved or changed for generations. They say the Old Took lived in it year after year, while he and the room got older and shabbier together - and it has never changed since he died, a century ago.'

The Two Towers, LoTR Book 3, Ch 4, Treebeard


History
2683
Isengrim Took II becomes... Thain and begins the excavation of Great Smials.

The Lord of the Rings, Appendix B, The Tale of Years: The Third Age

By the end of the first century of the Fourth Age there were already to be found in the Shire several libraries that contained many historical books and records.

The largest of these collections were probably at Undertowers, at Great Smials, and at Brandy Hall....

The original Red Book has not been preserved, but many copies were made.... The most important copy, however, has a different history. It was kept at Great Smials, but it was written in Gondor, probably at the request of the great-grandson of Peregrin, and completed in S.R. 1592 (F.A. 172).... That book was a copy, made at the request of King Elessar, of the Red Book of the Periannath, and was brought to him by the Thain Peregrin when he retired to Gondor in IV 64....

Since Meriadoc and Peregrin became the heads of their great families, and at the same time kept up their connexions with Rohan and Gondor, the libraries at Bucklebury and Tuckborough contained much that did not appear in the Red Book....

At Great Smials the books were of less interest to Shire-folk, though more important for larger history. None of them was written by Peregrin, but he and his successors collected many manuscripts written by scribes of Gondor: mainly copies or summaries of histories or legends relating to Elendil and his heirs. Only here in the Shire were to be found extensive materials for the history of Númenor and the arising of Sauron. It was probably at Great Smials that The Tale of Years was put together, with the assistance of material collected by Meriadoc.

The Lord of the Rings, Prologue, Note on the Shire Records

Contributors:
docmon, 18Sep05
Elena Tiriel 30Oct06

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