Paraphernalia

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Endril 02/Jan/2007 at 02:46 AM
Healer of Imladris Points: 9193 Posts: 9362 Joined: 15/Jan/2006
I found this word in The Hobbit and I was wondering what it meant. It seems it was a thing the dwarves and Bilbo carried with them while they made there journey to the mountain inhabited by Smaug. Can anyone explain?
Morgil 02/Jan/2007 at 03:05 AM
Minstrel of Lothlorien Points: 2614 Posts: 3542 Joined: 10/Dec/2008
I assume that Tolkien was applying its common definitions, such as equipment for a specific task, or various belongings. 
Celandine 02/Jan/2007 at 07:00 AM
Shirriff of the Shire Points: 9616 Posts: 5493 Joined: 19/Feb/2006
Paraphernalia is in reference to any number of things. It could be referring to their equipment for their trip (axes, blankets, tinder, etc...) or it could even refer to their personal belongings. Maybe both. It depends on the context from which you drew the word and must be looked at in its entirety to determine what exactly was meant. Hope this helps Legolas
Denethor II 02/Jan/2007 at 07:29 AM
Porter of Minas Tirith Points: 4412 Posts: 10995 Joined: 07/Aug/2002

Dictionary.com describes it as follows:

1. (sometimes used with a singular verb) equipment, apparatus, or furnishing used in or necessary for a particular activity: a skier’s paraphernalia.
2. (used with a plural verb) personal belongings.

So, it’s just about everything they took with them, that was not really worth being mentioned separately, I always think.