Third Age 3018: Gandalf, on Shadowfax, crosses the River Isen while traveling north to the Shire.
Third Age 3018:
– Four Black Riders enter the Shire. The remaining riders pursue the Rangers to the east.
– One Rider comes to Hobbiton and questions the Gaffer about ‘Mr. Baggins.’
– Frodo, Sam and Pippin leave Bag End for Crickhollow.
– Gandalf tames Shadowfax and heads north from Rohan for the Shire.
Third Age 2890: Birth of Bilbo Baggins. (* See note below)
Third Age 2968: Birth of Frodo Baggins.
Third Age 3001: Bilbo Baggins’ 111th birthday party and farewell feast.
“…eleventy-one years is too short a time to live among such excellent and admirable hobbits. I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.”
[The Fellowship of the Ring, LotR Book 1, Ch 1, A Long-expected Party]
Third Age 3018: Gandalf overtakes Shadowfax. At the same time, far to the north, Black Riders reach the borders of the Shire at Sarn Ford. They drive off the Rangers that are protecting that area.
Third Age 3019: Saruman enters the Shire.
Third Age 3021: Frodo and Sam meet the Last Riding of the Keepers of the Rings in the Woody End.
Fourth Age 61: Sam Gamgee leaves the Shire. It is said that he has passed over the Sea into the West.
*Note: “Wait a minute!” you might be saying. “Tolkien told us that Bilbo’s birthday was September 22 and today is only September 13th!” This is true. Bilbo’s, and Frodo’s, birthday is recorded as being September 22 on the Shire calendar. What one needs to remember is that the Shire calendar does not line up directly with the modern Gregorian calendar. Elvenensse follows what can be called an”adjusted” calendar, hence the dates given for events by Tolkien will seem off. If , for simplicity’s sake, you want to celebrate Bilbo and Frodo’s birthdays on September 22 of the modern Gregorian calendar I do not think they will mind 😉
(For more information on the different calendars of Middle-earth and how they relate to modern times, see Boris Shapiro’s article “The Calendars of Imladris, Gondor and the Shire – and their adaptation for Gregorian reckoning” on the Gwaith-i-Phethdain website.)
Third Age 3018: Gandalf encounters the great horse Shadowfax for the first time. Shadowfax will not allow Gandalf to approach him. Gandalf follows the horse across the land of Rohan.
Third Age 3019: The Travellers return to Rivendell.
Third Age 3021: Frodo and Sam leave Hobbiton for the Grey Havens.
Third Age 3019: Gandalf and Pippin, on Shadowfax, reach Minas Tirith.
” ‘Fare you well!’ said Ingold; and the men made way for Shadowfax, and he passed through a narrow gate in the wall. ‘May you bring good counsel to Denethor in his need, and to us all, Mithrandir!’ Ingold cried. ‘But you come with tidings of grief and danger, as is your wont, they say.’
‘Because I come seldom but when my help is needed,’ answered Gandalf. ‘And as for counsel, to you I would say that you are over-late in repairing the wall of the Pelennor. Courage will now be your best defence against the storm that is at hand — that and such hope as I bring. For not all the tidings that I bring are evil. But leave your trowels and sharpen your swords!’ “
[The Return of the King, LotR Book 5, Ch 1, Minas Tirith]
—Faramir leaves Henneth Annûn for Minas Tirith.
—Aragorn and his company, followed by the Dead, set out from the Stone of Erech and come to Calembel on the River Ciril.
“‘…We rode from the Black Stone,’ [Legolas] said. ‘And lo! in the darkness of Mordor my hope rose; for in that gloom the Shadow Host seemed to grow stronger and more terrible to look upon. Some I saw riding, some striding, yet all moving with the same great speed. Silent they were, but there was a gleam in their eyes. In the uplands of Lamedon they overtook our horses, and swept round us, and would have passed us by, if Aragorn had not forbidden them.’
‘At his command they fell back. “Even the shades of Men are obedient to his will,” I thought. “They may serve his needs yet!””
[The Return of the King, LotR Book 5, Ch 9, The Last Debate]
—At dusk Frodo reaches the Morgul-road.
—Théoden comes to Dunharrow.
—The Storm of Mordor begins to flow across the lands to the west during the night.