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Something else that might indicate his association with the Maiar is Gandalf's visit. At the end of the Third Age, after Sauron was defeated, Gandalf's mission was done and he had nothing left to do in Middle-earth. Having fulfilled his divine quest, even helping the Hobbits against the ruffians in the Shire did not matter to him anymore, but talking with Tom Bombadil did. Thus, Bombadil must have been immensely important to Gandalf. Assuming that they were of the same species and that Gandalf might have offered him a place on the [[White Ship]] would be one of the easiest ways to explain why.
 
Something else that might indicate his association with the Maiar is Gandalf's visit. At the end of the Third Age, after Sauron was defeated, Gandalf's mission was done and he had nothing left to do in Middle-earth. Having fulfilled his divine quest, even helping the Hobbits against the ruffians in the Shire did not matter to him anymore, but talking with Tom Bombadil did. Thus, Bombadil must have been immensely important to Gandalf. Assuming that they were of the same species and that Gandalf might have offered him a place on the [[White Ship]] would be one of the easiest ways to explain why.
  
One possible drawback to this theory is his relationship to Good and Evil and the [[Unseen]] realm, which is evident on the effect of [[the One Ring]] on him. The Ring (containing Sauron's essence) had no effect on him although it had some effect on [[Saruman]] and [[Gandalf]]. Also, Gandalf in the Council of Elrond said that Tom is "neutral" and would not understand the cause of the [[Free peoples]], while all other known Maiar had their sides.
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One possible drawback was his relationship to the Good and Evil and the [[Unseen]] realm, which is evident on the effect of [[the One Ring]] on him. The Ring (containing Sauron's essence) had no effect on him although it had some effect on [[Saruman]] and [[Gandalf]]. Also, Gandalf in the Council of Elrond said that Tom is "neutral" and would not understand the cause of the [[Free peoples]], while all other known Maiar had their sides.
  
 
[[Robert Foster]] in ''[[The Complete Guide to Middle-earth]]'' indeed identifies Tom, [[Goldberry]] and the [[River-woman]] as Maiar.
 
[[Robert Foster]] in ''[[The Complete Guide to Middle-earth]]'' indeed identifies Tom, [[Goldberry]] and the [[River-woman]] as Maiar.

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