If you’ve been about the web awhile you have actually probably stumbled upon the adage, “Not all that wander are lost” by J.R.R Tolkien.

You are watching: What does the saying not all those who wander are lost mean

This quote is popular, particularly with travelers and also backpackers who space so often characterized as “lost” by society. I know I have had actually to field countless comments about being “lost” or “finding what I’m feather for” or “running away” in the past decade or so due to the fact that I began traveling. However for me, like so many, take trip is not around feeling lost.

In this post, we’ll look at the an interpretation of “not every those that wander room lost”, where the quote come from, just how I would readjust the quote if i could, to add a bonus ar of several of the finest travel quotes.


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Not all Those that Wander space Lost” quote meaning

The idea behind the famed quote that seems to resonate with countless nomads and backpackers about the people is that just due to the fact that they live nomadically there is no a typical job/house/family/whatever that doesn’t mean they room confused about their purpose in life. ~ above the contrary: for numerous of those people “wandering”, they feeling they have found exactly what their function is.

The quote actually comes from a poem from The mr of the Rings called All the is yellow does not glitter. (This heat is an inversion of the quote indigenous Shakespeare’s The vendor of Venice: “All that glitters is no gold”.)

Here’s the original Lord that the rings poem:

All the is gold does not glitter,Not all those that wander room lost;The old that is solid does not wither,Deep roots room not reached by the frost.From the ashes a fire shall be woken,A irradiate from the shadows shall spring;Renewed shall be blade the was broken,The crownless again shall be king

Apparently “those that wander” native the 2nd line describes a personality from the novel, Aragorn’s, wanderings about Middle planet to know the political case so he have the right to be a far better king later on on. Ns don’t understand anything around The lord of the ring – if you want some much more deep reflect on the poem, inspect out this Quora forum posting.

How i would adjust the quote

I think there’s more to the totality “lost” story; ns don’t think being shed or not shed is necessarily concerned wandering or not wandering. Part wanderers space not lost, yes, yet some are.

For the stationary folk? The ones v conventional jobs, houses, families? Well few of them are shed too. And also some aren’t.

Here’s a diagram of what ns mean:


And why must being ‘lost’ be a bad thing anyway? it doesn’t typical you’re incompetent, irresponsible, unintelligent…It’s just a normal component of the human condition.

In conclusion, i would prefer to propose an addendum come the quote, together follows:

“Not all that wander space lost, yet some are. And also some who perform not wander are shed too. And also that’s every okay.”


More great travel quotes

Travel estimates have a means of express sentiments about the travel way of living in a method we might not have actually thought to. Below are some various other quotes about travel that ns love to ponder and their backstories:


It doesn’t interest me what you execute for a living. I desire to recognize what you ache for and if you challenge to dream of conference your heart’s longing.

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It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will hazard looking prefer a fool for love for your dream because that the adventure of being alive.

This is one excerpt from one of my favorite poems: The invite by Oriah hill Dreamer. Ns recommend analysis the poem in that entirety, and you can examine out the book she’s written roughly the bigger an interpretation of the city as well.