Difference between Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit

While both are written by J. R. R. Tolkien, and have plots which are interlinked and frequently reference each other, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings are two entirely different stories.

The Hobbit is the prelude to the popular Lord of the Rings series, and is a single novel, while The Lord of the Rings is a lengthy trilogy. The protagonist in The Hobbit is Bilbo Baggins, while The Lord of the Rings focuses mostly on the adventures of Frodo Baggins, Bilbo’s nephew.

The plot in The Hobbit revolves around Bilbo Baggins’ journey to the Lonely Mountain with the dwarves, and their battle with Smaug the dragon. The Lord of the Rings, on the other hand, is centered on Frodo’s journey to Mordor, along with a steadily decreasing host of companions, and the epic battle of good against evil in Middle Earth.

The story of Bilbo Baggins is the central theme in The Hobbit, which details exactly how the ring came into his possession. Meanwhile, The Lord of the Rings is a more epic tale, telling the story of how Frodo Baggins came to be in the possession of the One Ring, and how he travelled to Mount Doom in order to destroy it.


  • 1

    The Hobbit

    The hobbit was originally written by J.R.R. Tolkien for his children, and has a clear and simple plot based on concepts like good and evil, and safe and dangerous, which children can easily understand and learn from. The Hobbit also contains characters which are particularly interesting and amusing for kids.  In this story, Gandalf the wizard tricks Bilbo into hosting a party of dwarves, who aim to reclaim their lands and treasures which have been captured by Smaug the Dragon - normally a peace-loving hobbit, Bilbo is inevitably drawn (reluctantly) into the scheme. The problem is that the journey towards the Lonely Mountain is very dangerous; however, Gandalf has a map with a secret route marked out on it. Armed with this, the company of assorted creatures (dwarves and a hobbit) sets out on this vast and incredible journey.

    Image courtesy: 4.bp.blogspot.com

  • 2

    The Lord of the Rings

    The Lord of the Rings is a trilogy which serves as a sequel to The Hobbit, and was written by University of Oxford professor J.R.R. Tolkien. While The Hobbit was written primarily for children, its sequel is an epic and highly detailed work, which has darker themes and has developed a huge fan following among adults.

    The trilogy was made into three movies, all of which saw major success at the box office, winning awards and acclaim from all quarters.

    The plot traces the history of the rings, when the Dark Lord Sauron created a Ring to rule all the other rings of power. However, he is defeated by the army of Men and Elves, and Isildur cuts off the finger on which Sauron wears the ring, causing the Dark Lord to lose his physical form. Nonetheless, the Ring is lost when Isildur is later killed by Orcs.

    Ages after it was first lost, the Ring is found by Déagol, and his friend Sméagol falls under the Ring's influence which forces him to kill Déagol. He is then banished and forced to live in caves as the Ring extends his life, transforming him into Gollum, a corrupted creature.

    He later loses the Ring which is found by Bilbo Baggins and then Frodo Baggins inherits this ring. The Lord of the Rings picks the story up from here, chronicling Frodo's journey to Middle Earth to destroy the ring, while epic battles are fought as evil threatens to sweep the world.

    Image courtesy: scottriggan.info

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

− seven = 2