This papercraft is the Gollum (originally known as Sméagol or Trahald), a Stoor, one of the three early hobbit-types, based on the film “the Lord of the Rings“. The paper model was created by J. Ossorio. The name Gollum was derived from his disgusting gurgling, choking cough. His birth can be estimated to have happened in the year TA 2430. His death date is given as March 25, 3019.
His life was extended far beyond its natural limits by the effects of possessing the One Ring. At the time of his death, Sméagol was about 589 years old, a remarkable age for a creature that was once a Hobbit, but he had been deformed and twisted in both body and mind by the corruption of the Ring. His chief desire was to possess the Ring that had enslaved him, and he pursued it for many years after Bilbo Baggins found it while walking in the Misty Mountains in the book “The Hobbit“.
Sméagol was born during the Third Age and was a member of the secluded branch of the early Stoorish Hobbits. Sméagol spent most of his early life with his grandmother who was his matriarch.
On TA 2463 Sméagol went fishing with his cousin Déagol on the Gladden Fields north of Lothlórien. They were having a good time until a large fish pulled Déagol underwater. There, Déagol found a golden ring lying in the mud of the lake. Sméagol demanded the ring as his birthday present, but Déagol refused, saying that he had already given him a present more than he could afford. This made Sméagol angry, and he strangled his cousin to death. Sméagol soon became corrupted by the ring and started thieving and spying. Because of this, Sméagol was banished from the town by his people and was forced to live in the Misty Mountains.
The One Ring soon started changing Sméagol’s body and mind quickly. During his transformation into the creature Gollum, Smeagol underwent the loss of his hair, developed a rasp in his throat, became thin and gangly from malnourishment, and developed large, darkness piercing eyes, a by-product of spending his time in dark caves situated in The Misty Mountains. The Ring also prolonged his life far beyond its natural limits.
He was the Ring’s fourth bearer, after Sauron, Isildur and for a short time Déagol, and before Bilbo Baggins, Frodo Baggins and Sam Gamgee. He lost the Ring to Bilbo when he dropped it after killing a young orc, although it has been said that he lost it having been defeated in a riddle contest by Bilbo.
In the first edition of The Hobbit, Tolkien made no reference to his size, leading several illustrators to portray him as being very large. Tolkien realized the omission, and clarified in later editions that he was of average hobbit size and in “The Lord of the Rings”, there is a reference to Sam being “little less in height” than he is. Tolkien describes Gollum as either dark, bone-white or sallow: at one point, the Men of Ithilien mistake his silhouette for a tailless black squirrel. Gorbag and Shagrat describe him as a dark fellow. In a manuscript written to guide illustrators to the appearance of his characters, Tolkien explained this by saying that Gollum had pale skin, but wore dark clothes and was often seen in poor light. The Hobbit states he has pockets, in which he keeps a tooth sharpening rock, goblin teeth, wet shells, and a scrap of bat wing. Despite these details, he is generally depicted wearing a loincloth or naked in illustrations and adaptations.
In the Jackson adaptation of The Two Towers, Faramir describes him as “having an ill-favored look.”
He was also very thin and only had six teeth, comparing him to Shelob; one of the orcs describes him as “rather like a spider himself, or perhaps like a starved frog.” Gollum’s toughness is said to stem from his hobbit roots. Gollum hates light, and avoids it if possible. He is emaciated and gaunt, but possesses a vicious, wiry strength; Aragorn states, “his malice gives him a strength hardly to be imagined.” In The Two Towers, Gollum’s grip is described as “soft, but horribly strong” as Gollum wrestles with Sam Gamgee. He is also able to climb effortlessly straight down cliffs impossible to climb by Sam and Frodo, and can make long leaps. Additionally he can run extremely fast, strangely on all fours. Gollum prefers to eat meat raw, and refuses to eat anything Elvish because it apparently burns him to the touch.
Gollum was a good survivor and like Sméagol was very keen eyed and quick of hand this made him an excellent fisherman. He could spot and catch fish in almost any level of light and waters. He fished the waters of the Misty Mountain’s underground lake for centuries in almost complete darkness and almost anywhere he had to after leaving his cave in search of the Ring and the thief Baggins. He was known to eat almost anything that was living or edible and could stomach anything raw and uncooked. He was also very good at not being seen and was an excellent waterman making use of anything that could float which made it possible for him to follow the Fellowship for so long. For more information please click here.
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