Gollum is a fictional character from J. R. R. Tolkien’s legendarium. He was introduced in the author’s children’s fantasy novel The Hobbit, and became an important supporting character in its sequel, The Lord of the Rings. Gollum was a Stoor Hobbit of the River-folk, who lived near the Gladden Fields. Originally known as Sméagol, he was corrupted by the One Ring and later named Gollum after his habit of making “a horrible swallowing noise in his throat”.
His life was extended far beyond its natural limits by the effects of possessing the Ring, which he frequently referred to as “my precious” and “my birthday present”. After Bilbo Baggins took it during the famous Riddle Game, Gollum pursued it for the rest of his life.
During his centuries under the Ring’s influence, Gollum came to love and hate the Ring, just as he loved and hated himself. Throughout the story, Gollum was torn between his lust for the Ring and his desire to be free of it.
Gollum first appears in The Hobbit, when Bilbo Baggins stumbled upon his lair and found the Ring, which Gollum had lost in the network of caves leading to the lake. Gollum lived on a small island in the centre of a lake at the roots of a mountain.
He survived on cave fish, which he caught from his small boat, and small goblins who strayed too far from the stronghold of the Great Goblin. Over the years, his eyes adapted to the dark and became “lamp-like”, shining with a sickly pale light in the dark.