The One Wiki to Rule Them All
The One Wiki to Rule Them All

"It's an ill wind as blows nobody no good, as I always say. And all's well as ends Better!"
The Gaffer, following the Scouring of the Shire

Hamfast "The Gaffer" Gamgee was a Hobbit of the Shire, a gardener by trade and father of Samwise Gamgee.


Hamfast was the son of Hobson "Roper" Gamgee. He married Bell Goodchild, with whom he had six children, including Samwise Gamgee, his youngest son. He was a gardener on the Baggins property at Bag End for many years. He was frequently consulted for his knowledge of root vegetables (generally over a pint at the local inn), and was seen as a particular authority on the growing of potatoes. As the time of Bilbo Baggins's birthday party drew near, he was also in demand for his stories of Bilbo and his family. He didn't particularly like Sandyman the miller.[3]

On the evening that Frodo Baggins left Bag End, the Gaffer encountered a Black Rider asking about Frodo. He told the Rider that Frodo had gone to Bucklebury. He later reported the conversation to his son Sam, who in turn told Frodo about it.[4]

During the troubles fomented by Lotho Sackville-Baggins, the Gaffer was turned out of his hole at Number Three, Bagshot Row, as Sam saw in Galadriel's mirror. Farmer Cotton helped look after him, sharing food, although this was against the Rules that the Chief and later Sharkey enforced. When Sam arrived back in the Shire, the Gaffer was rather disbelieving of his son's adventures and disapproved of Sam's wearing "ironmongery." Once the Shire had been cleaned up, the Gaffer was restored to Number Three of the new, brick-lined holes in the hill where he was well-looked after by Widow Rumble.[5][6] He would live there until his death in SR 1428.


Hamfast means 'stay-at-home' or 'Home-fast' in the Hobbits' own language, and the full name is translated into Westron as "Ranugad Galbasi".

Hamfast "Gaffer" Gamgee from The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, Mount Gundabad Adventure Pack

Portrayal in adaptations

Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings trilogy

"That's for Frodo. That's for The Shire. And that's for my old Gaffer!"
Samwise Gamgee in The Return of the King upon slaying three Orcs

Hamfast is portrayed by Norman Forsey in The Fellowship of the Ring film, appearing briefly in the Green Dragon inn early in the film.

1981 Radio series

Hamfast is portrayed in The Lord of the Rings (1981 radio series), voiced by John Church.

Video games

Hamfast appeared as a child in The Hobbit (2003 video game).

In The Fellowship of the Ring video game, he appears as an NPC in his conversation with the Black Rider on the hill.

Voice dubbing actors

Foreign Language Voice dubbing artist
Portuguese (Brazil) (Television/DVD) Mauro Castro
German Jochen Striebeck

Behind the scenes

The word Gaffer means "the chief electrician in a film production". It is also a historical and contemporary British colloquialism that refers to an overseer or boss, who is often older than his subordinates. J.R.R. Tolkien was more likely thinking of the latter definition when he gave Sam's father his nickname.


Foreign Language Translated name
Armenian Հեմսֆասթ Գեմջիի
Bulgarian Cyrillic Бързохам Майтапер
Catalan Hamfast Gamgí, el Vellot
Chinese (Hong Kong) 詹吉·老人
Czech Peckoslav Křepelka
Danish Hamfast Gammegod, farlille
Galician Hamveloz Gamllí
Hebrew האמפאסט גאמג'י
Estonian Hamfast Mängla
Finnish Hamfast Gamgi
French Hamfast Gamegie
Georgian ბებრუხანა გემჯი
German Hamfast Gamdschie
Japanese ハムファスト・ギャムジー
Lithuanian Hemas Gemdžis, Gaferas
Persian هامفست گمجی
Portuguese Hamfast Gamgi
Russian Хэмфаст "Жихарь" Гэмджи
Spanish Hamfast Gamyi
Swedish Hamfast "Tjyvgubben" Gamgi
Thai แฮมฟาสท์ "พ่อเฒ่าแกฟเฟอร์" แกมจี
Ukrainian Cyrillic Хемфаста "Геффера" Гемджі