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Profile: Fritz.Rozz
User Name: Fritz.Rozz
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Last Visit: Sunday, January 24, 2016 10:27:20 AM
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Topic: Bilbo Baggins' quote - Could some one explain
Posted: Sunday, January 24, 2016 8:43:45 AM
The sentence is a very mean insult, cleverly disguised.

He says: "I know the lot of you pretty darn well and you fully deserve the little liking that I have for you."

In detail:
"I don't know half of you half as well as I should like ..."
Leave out the "don't" in the sentence and what remains is that he knows half of them not very well.
But he doesn't. Meaning that he knows more than that better than that.

"and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."
Less than half of them don't get what they deserve. That may be a few less or considerably less. Maybe hardly anyone. So most of them get what they deserve.

It's all very British.

If you take into account what was said about all the Hobbits a little earlier in the book, it is quite clear that Bilbo has a pretty good idea about the dumbness, deviousness and greed of most other Hobbits and that his character assessment is a good enough reason for him to not like many of his fellow Hobbits a great deal.

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