Hobbits are gentle, good-natured, shy folk. They do little traveling, and they are abnormally fond of food, eating up to six meals a day. Throughout their history, Hobbits have shown unparalleled skill, courage, endurance and resistance in times of danger and terror.
Most Hobbits live longer than humans, with the average lifespan of about 100 years, although it is not uncommon for them to live 20 to 30 years beyond that. Young Hobbits mature and are considered an adult at the age of 33. Hobbits are smaller than Dwarves, usually standing between two and four feet in height. Hobbit ears are slightly pointed, and their furry feet have leathery soles, so they rarely wear shoes or boots.
Hobbits were skilled listeners and have very good eyesight. They have a round, jovial face, and are prone to being overweight. Hobbits are seldom in a hurry to get anywhere, and never rush about unnecessarily. However, they are nimble creatures, and deft in their movements. Hobbits generally dress in bright colors, and are particularly fond of yellow and green. Their hair ranges from a light or dark brown to blonde or a golden red, and is almost always curly, and eye color is generally brown or hazel.
Early in their history, Hobbits were divided in three basic factions, each with different customs and temperament.
- The Harfoots are the most common. They are smaller and shorter than the other kinds, with browner skin. They do not grow beards, and rarely wear shoes or boots. They are skilled with their hands and feet, and prefer to live in hillsides, burrows and highlands.
- The Stoors often choose to live near water, or on flat land. They are broader and heavier in build than the other Hobbits, and their feet and hands are larger. They often grow beards, and are the most reluctant variety of Hobbit to leave the River Anduin, where some Stoors continue to dwell. Thy have an affinity for water, boats and swimming.
- The Fallohides prefer trees and woodland, and are the least common type of Hobbit. They have fairer skin and hair, and are taller and slimmer than other Hobbits. They also have better relations with Elves, are more skilled with language and song, and prefer hunting to tilling. They are friendlier than most other types of Hobbits.
Humans often call Hobbits, Haflings, and Elves call them Periannath. The origin of the name Hobbit comes from the word, holbytla, which means hole-builder. Hobbits do tend to build holes to live in…which are cozy, homely, and quite clean.