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Miss Dora Baggins' Book of Manners  by Dreamflower 16 Review(s)
ElemmírëReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/28/2006
>>But a wise Parent will discourage too many gifts for the young byrding: he or she is likely to become Overexcited, and miss the true point of the Birthday, which is the Giving of the Gifts.
It should be emphasized to the small byrding that he or she will now be bestowing Presents like a “big lad” or “big lass”, a lure that will fill the childish heart with pride and glee. At some point, these Gifts must be chosen.<<

That is just so ... hobbity, Dreamflower! (Now that would make a cute tale ... Prim and Drogo letting Frodo know that he is a Big Lad and must pick out mathoms. Hmmm ...)

>>Again, unless one is living in the Ancestral Home, it is also in Poor Taste to throw an elaborate Party for a child--even on the Fifth Birthday. It is likely to give the byrding a false impression of his or her own Importance in the World <<

I guess Bilbo ignored this advice from Dora since he and Frodo share a birthday. Frodo turned out all right in the end, however. *grin* Wonder what Dora truly thought of those elaborate parties for her only nephew?

So were Frodo, Merry, & Pippin 3 of those cousins Dora observed?

LOL! 'Lads are not to be trusted in the larder.'

>>With a certain Notable Exception, Hobbits who leave to find Adventure never Return. This alone should eventually serve as a Cautionary.<<

What a hoot!! I can't wait to read the next chapter, Dreamflower!

P.S. I'm curious. Is Dora going to have a special chapter on the needs and care of the orphaned child, since it is so very rare in Shire. It's a subject that's obviously affected her and she _does_ love to hand out advice ...

Author Reply: I'm glad you thought it hobbity. It just seemed to me that if (according to JRRT) they make such a big deal of children *entering* faunthood, they would be likely to do the same thing when they *leave* it!

Hmm...I've done fifth birthday fics for Merry and Pippin, but not Frodo or Sam. I'll have to think about it...

She probably thought Bilbo was a law unto himself, and that it was very fortunate that Frodo was a sensible lad, and unlikely to let it turn his head.

Yes. They were.

And no, they aren't. LOL!

Dora *is* being a bit snide there, isn't she? *grin*

I am *quite* sure she handed out *plenty* of advice to Bilbo--whether he wanted it or not!

Nienor NinielReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/28/2006
Ah, nice mix of real parenting advice and hobbit culture. I like the emphasis on hospitality and food - in character for hobbits. The distinction between the Lesser and the Great Families also works well for me.

I think your age chart makes sense: I've always thought, too, that hobbits aged slower than us, and not that they simply spent a longer time in adolescence.

As I said before: a great read, and I like that you update so quickly.

All the best, Nienor

Author Reply: I am trying to mix the two into a coherent blend of what would come out as "Hobbit-sense", and I'm glad you think it's working.

Food and hospitality would definitely be something that Hobbits would put a good deal of emphasis on, and there will be more of it in the "Mealtimes and Manners" chapter. JRRT himself uses the term "Great Families" in his Letters. I sort of envision a Roll, on which the Families are listed in order of importance, with the Tooks, Brandybucks, Baggins, Bolgers and Boffins at the very top, followed by some of the other families that seem to be prominent. The Great Families would all be the ones near the top, and I envision the Lesser Ones as being near the bottom.

It only makes sense. If a hobbit child does not become a toddler until age three, and then comes of age at 33 instead of 21, then it seems to me that the growth and aging process is spread over the lifetime of the hobbit, instead of just concentrated in adolescence. And a number of hints JRRT drops seems to support that notion.

The story has me by the throat right now, so as long as it does that I'll be updating pretty quickly--probably to the detriment of other stories, I'm afraid. But this one doesn't give me the trouble a regular story does. No plot snags, LOL!

demeter dReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/28/2006
With such close and supporting families, most Hobbits must have been happy individuals.And even "the Village" cares what one does, hence the advice for "children not one's own". the four visitors, ...hmmm, the younger brother, of course, Pippin, the other young one possibly Merry, the oldest would be Frodo. The other one would be one of the cousins close to Frodo's age, of which several appear in various author's fan-fictions. I am not as familiar with some of this as I would like to be. Looking forward to more!

Author Reply: I think most hobbits probably were. I get the impression that most hobbits were very content with their lives.

Well, you've mostly guessed right. The fourth cousin was Fredegar Bolger. I thought about including Folco, but thought five might be pushing it a bit.

French PonyReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/28/2006
Ooo, the dreaded Poor Taste! You know you're in for it when an etiquette mistress deems something to be in Poor Taste.

I think I probably know the little child in the Old Smials with the three older sisters. . .

And of course, every little Hobbit child ought to be able to rattle off a proper genealogy. Just the image of some small child doing that is absolutely hysterical. I love it. And it seems to me that Miss Dora might well have done some disciplining of children Not Her Own.

Author Reply: Oh yes! Miss Dora knows Poor Taste when she sees it!

You probably do, *grin*

I did this little bit in one of my fics where a young Merry introduces Fatty and Folco to Farmer Cotton, reeling off their cousinly connections with confidence. And I suddenly realized, "Of course! That *is* the first thing a hobbit is going to want to know about another hobbit--who they are related to!"

I am quite certain that she did. And that any young Hobbit subject to her eagle eye would probably never forget it!

shireboundReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/28/2006
I just love the words you choose to capitalize; it's easy to see what Aunt Dora thinks is Important and Worth Knowing.

One of the interesting things I'm gleaning from this Etiquette Book is how truly unusual the actions of "unexpected" hobbit -- such as Bilbo or one of the wandering Tooks -- must have been to such an ordered society.

Eeee, "the Delightful Mysteries of the Kitchen"! :D

Author Reply: *grin* Yes, she does seem to Love those Capital Letters!

Yes, hobbits are by nature very orderly creatures, and those hobbits who were exceptional would have been definitely looked at askance!

Glad you liked that phrase--I was moderately fond of it myself.

SurgicalSteelReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/28/2006
Oh, this was lovely, too! I can't help but think that Miss Dora would've been an excellent parent - and can't wait to see her comments on the 'tween years!

*snerk* And wonder what she said about Bilbo on his return from an Adventure?

Author Reply: Well, the Tween years are next. Her magnum opus is rather extensive.

I think she probably would have been--she seems to be well-endowed with that "Hobbit-sense" she so extolls.

Miss Dora would like to remind you that she has Named No Names... It would not be Proper. *grin*

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