Samwise Gamgee

Discussion in 'Books' started by Glandros, Oct 4, 2003.

  1. Glandros

    Glandros New Member

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    I dedicate this thread to my favorite character, Sam.

    Has there ever been a more selfless and caring friend then Sam?
    To me, Sam has always been the glue that holds the LOTR trilogy together.
    Sam was a simple gardener with little cares in the world except taking care of his dad and pulling weeds at Bag End.
    He was not a learned Hobbit however Mr. Bilbo was teaching him his letters.
    Purely out of friendship he leaves his Dad and his quiet life to follow Frodo into a quest of great misery and suffering.
    He was Frodo's servant, but let's get real here. Frodo was not paying Sam to go on the quest. Sam went out of love for Frodo.
    From the very start Sam looks after Frodo.
    He was even willing to lay his life on the line and fight Aragorn to protect Frodo in the Prancing Pony. Even though the chances were slim that he could best an armed man twice his size.
    Apart from a few grumblings about an empty stomach Sam only thinks of Frodo throughout the whole tale.
    When he looked in Galadriel's mirror and saw the homeless state of his father, Sam remained loyal to Frodo even though most of us would have rushed home to help dad.
    He throws himself into the water when Frodo tries to escape on his own and go to Mordor. Even though Sam is deathly afraid of the water and he can not swim.
    When there is only a little food or water left Sam gives Frodo his ration.
    When Frodo can not carry a pack, Sam carries it.
    Sam saves Frodo's life when he is captured by Orcs, once again risking his own life.
    Eventually Sam even carries Frodo on his back when they are near the end of their journey.
    When Frodo attacked Sam over the Ring, it broke my heart. I could just imagine how hurt Sam was when Frodo turned on him like that. And how much strength it took for Sam to understand that this was not Frodo talking, but the Ring.
    All through the misery of their final miles to Orodruin Sam encourages Frodo not to give up hope and to keep trying.
    No truer words were ever spoken than, "Frodo would not have gotten far without Sam...."
    Sam endured great suffering for Frodo, and for the Free Peoples of Middle-Earth. And he asked for nothing in return.
    Even when he returns home, Sam never thinks of himself. He uses the precious gift that Galadriel gave to him in order to restore and heal the wounds given to the Shire by Saruman.

    To him is trusted Bag End, the tales and legacies of the Baggins family and the memories of things high and beautiful that have forever been lost to the world.

    To me, there is never been a greater friend in all of literature. And, the Quest would have failed if not for this humble, selfless, true hearted and wonderful Hobbit.

    All these things are the reasons why Samwise Gamgee is not only my favorite LotR character, but is also one of my favorite characters of all the books I've read...

    I think his final line, "Well, I'm back.", can really sum up his character's story. Frodo was his master, but was also his friend. He would have given up everything for Frodo, and in some ways, he did. And at the end, he is happy to know that he too will eventually be allowed to travel to Valinor. And yet he's happy that he doesn't have to go just yet...
    He's faced all these troubles, and his "reward" of a sort is getting to live a normal life. He returns home to his loving wife and children. He is sad to know that Frodo is gone, but he still says, "Well, I'm back." He is happy, even in his saddness, to be home again.
    One scene I really can't wait to see in RotK is when Sam picks up the Ring and starts to carry-on the quest. Even with all the difficult choices he had before, that was the hardest choice for him to make. He wants to take up Frodo, give him a proper burial as he believes he's dead. Yet he still realizes the importance of the quest. And he decides to go on. Yet when he finds that Frodo is alive, he goes after him, goes to rescue his Frodo.
    Sam is such an amazing character.

    What are your thoughts on Samwise the Brave?
     
  2. Doyler

    Doyler King of Dragons

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    I think you just summed up what everyone is thinking.

    He was truely a great hero in the novel. He never questioned frodo's decisions and followed like a true friend. A great hobbit among men.
     
  3. Lady_of_Shalott

    Lady_of_Shalott Weaving the Magic Web

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    Sam is one of my favorite characters too. I think you really summed it up there, Glandros. I'd like to have a friend like him.
     
  4. Glorfindel

    Glorfindel New Member

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    I also agree- Sam was about as loyal a friend as they come.

    Although to be perfectly honest with you, when I was first reading the books, I was a little worried that Sam had sort of a "blind-faith" in Frodo almost to a fault.

    Thankfully it's his friendship that KEEPS it from becoming his end.
     
  5. mithrandir

    mithrandir Gentleman Scholar

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    What about the way Sam treated Gollum? While it is true that too much trust in Gollum might have led to disaster, he certainly was abusive to the poor creature verbally. It just doesn't match the rest of his character.
     
  6. Lady_of_Shalott

    Lady_of_Shalott Weaving the Magic Web

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    Good point. But I think it was more out of his concern for Frodo that he was mean to Gollum. He was afraid that Gollum would hurt him somehow.
     
  7. mithrandir

    mithrandir Gentleman Scholar

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    Oh, I agree. As someone posted earlier, Sam is loyal to Frodo almost to a fault. To me, it just makes the character richer in that he isn't just Mr. Goody Goody all the time. He has passions and fears that go with that stuff. Sam is a good heart and Frodo would never have survived with his friendship. But, he also has depth. It's one of the things that I think has made this series so popular for so long. The characters are not the simple one dimenstional junk we see so often in film (and book) anymore.
     
  8. Glandros

    Glandros New Member

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    I agree completely.
    It's the way he acts towards Gollum that reveals how deep he really is.
    Sam is capable of being mean, he just refuses to most of the time.
     
  9. asap

    asap New Member

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    You've expressed it very well, Glandros.

    Also, your thread is kind of related to another thing I've lately wondered about Sam: people often say they don't like Sam because he is kind of... slow-witted. (That's often the first impression one gets about Sam).

    However, is there actually any proof about his self-claimed stupidity? I mean, he always says it himself, but I can't recall any incidents that really suggest he's unintelligent.
     
  10. mithrandir

    mithrandir Gentleman Scholar

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    Well, he certainly wasn't any good at eavesdropping...:D
     
  11. asap

    asap New Member

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    If clumsiness is a sign of unintelligence half of the professors in our uni should be fired ;)

    But seriously, in the book he was pretty good at it, remember how he always unnoticedly crept after Frodo even when he was not allowed to?
     
  12. Radagast

    Radagast Art House Member

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    Doesn't Samwise mean Halfwise? I recall reading that somewhere over the net, though where the website got that source is unknown to me.
     
  13. mithrandir

    mithrandir Gentleman Scholar

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    lol. Unfortunately I'd probably be in that group too.:)

    I was actually thinking of how he was caught by Gandalf eavesdropping at Frodo's window.
     
  14. asap

    asap New Member

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    Me too :D

    I should probably reread that scene. I remember his clumsiness, fear and humility, but no stupidity in particular. (In general, as far as I remember, Sam had a lot of respect for everyone he regarded to be wiser than himself, but that - being able to recognise and accept the fact you are not as important and wise as you'd like to think you are - can often be a sign of intelligence in itself. Hmm?

    Ah yes. I'm pretty sure it's in the Appendices as well (somewhere concerning the languages and the matters of translation). That would prove his slow-wittedness, if we presume that a person's personality and abilities are predestined by his name. Though I personally don't believe that it really is that simple in LOTR.
     
  15. Radagast

    Radagast Art House Member

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    True enough. Perhaps it was a theme Tolkien created when he started the writing LOTR, but as time went on slowly changed? Or perhaps Tolkien actually meant for Sam to be 'halfwitted', but did not realize that the point wasn't over emphazied in his writings.
     
  16. Miriel

    Miriel My Preciousss

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    I think Sam was self abusive because he wasn't as book learned as the Bagginses. But if you remember, Sam was actually quite smart, at least when he was escaping Frodo and himself from the orks of Mordor if nothing else. Considering he had no knowlege of Mordor or it's buildings he found his way around the tower and collected things for he and Frodo and their final bit of the journey. So technically, Samwise isn't a good name for him. :p
     
  17. asap

    asap New Member

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    I agree. I've also heard that in the first drafts Sam's role wasn't that important or that the original character wasn't even supposed to be in the fellowship. It's the same in the book. In the beginning Sam seems pretty plain, but he becomes more and more complex as the story continues.

    Mm-hmm. He was always very modest about his own abilities and talents.
     
  18. Lady_of_Shalott

    Lady_of_Shalott Weaving the Magic Web

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    Yes, that's true. At the beginning he seems like a simple gardener, but then later you really see that he is much more than that. He may not have any "book-learning", but he is smart.

    I wonder what made Tolkien change his mind and make Sam more important? We'll probably never know, but I'm just glad that he did. Sam is the best. :D
     
  19. Miriel

    Miriel My Preciousss

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    yes, Sam is probably the greatest hobbit, even if he wasn't the one who recieved the ring.
     
  20. The Archangel

    The Archangel Member

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    samwise means halfwit in welsh or something. i dunno, its in this guide to tolkien book i got. he was the greatest hobbit, even though merry and pippin were more famous in the shire. but all four hobbits were great, and though they all had their flaws those flaws made them much better and more lovable characters.