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Flourished III 1979 (379 by the Shire-reckoning)
Said to be the founder of the Oldbuck family
Old English for 'he-goat'1


About this entry:

  • Updated 20 November 1999
  • This entry is complete

Bucca of the Marish

First of the Shire-thains

The Oldbuck Family
The Brandybuck Family

Thains of the Shire

The end of the second millennium of the Third Age was a time of crisis for the Hobbits of the Shire. The northern lands of Middle-earth were aflame with war. The armies of Angmar, of Arthedain, of Cardolan, Rhudaur and latterly Gondor marched across the lands that had been the northern realm of Arnor. Most of the Shire-hobbits went into hiding, though some few marched to the service of Arthedain, within whose borders the Shire lay, but they never returned.

At last, peace returned: the kingdoms of the Dúnedain fell one by one, and then the victorious Witch-king of Angmar was himself defeated by a revenging army of Gondor. The Hobbits returned to their old lives, but the loss of Arvedui, the last King of Arthedain, left them leaderless.

After four years had passed since the end of the great wars, the Hobbits decided to take a leader for themselves. They chose2 one Bucca of the Marish, who was granted the title Thain of the Shire, and led the Shire-hobbits to peace and prosperity.

No more is known of Bucca's life, but his legacy remained until the time of the War of the Ring and beyond. At that time, more than twelve hundred years after his Thainship, the Masters of Buckland still proudly claimed descent from Bucca the first Thain.



'Bucca' isn't a fictional name: it was fairly common among the Anglo-Saxons, with the same meaning as given above. (For example, modern Buckingham comes from Old English for 'Land of Bucca's People'.).


In the drafts of The Lord of the Rings Appendices, it is stated that Bucca was officially elected to his post, but this statement doesn't appear in the published work. (See The History of Middle-earth, volume XII, VIII The Tale of Years of the Third Age, 1976)


About this entry:

  • Updated 20 November 1999
  • This entry is complete

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