Who was Balin from The Lord of the Rings? Is he part of the company of Thorin Oakenshield in The Hobbit? If he was, then there is a person named Gloin in the company of Thorin Oakenshield whose son's name is Gimli, and he is part of the Fellowship of the Ring. But when he enters into Moria, he says "It is my cousin Balin's house, and it is called a mine". So I mean how would he be his cousin if his father Gloin seems like Balin's age when they were in the company of Thorin Oakenshield?

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    You can see another Dwarf from Thorin's company in Moria: the dead Dwarf holding the big book is Ori.
    – Dennis_E
    Commented Nov 29, 2016 at 10:35

3 Answers 3


Yes, the Balin referred here is in fact the same Balin that was part of Thorin's company. And yes, in Moria, Gimli is referring to the same Balin, who was the Lord of Moria, by the time he was slain by goblins. So your question is how he could be a cousin of Gimli? To put it simply, Gimli was Balin's first cousin once removed.

LOTR wiki states this as follows.

Gimli stemmed from, but was not an inheritor of, the royal line. Through his father, Gimli was also the first cousin once removed (or "nephew", for simplicity's sake) of Balin, Lord of Moria, and his brother Dwalin, two more former companions of Bilbo.

If you are still not clear about how they are related, have a look at the family tree.

enter image description here

  • 5
    Note, also, that "cousin" can also be used in a broader sense than "first cousin" to refer to any relation, regardless of degree or distance, that isn't a grandparent or aunt/uncle to some degree. Gimli could refer to pretty much any descendent of Dáin I (his great-great-great uncle), not just Borin (his great-great grandfather) as a cousin in this sense.
    – chepner
    Commented Nov 29, 2016 at 14:17
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    The "Gimli Elf-frier" label in the family tree was... unexpected.
    – oliver
    Commented Nov 29, 2016 at 16:25
  • @oliver what else is a poor dwarf to eat while questing with elves? Especially if only carrying a pan and some butter. Fried elf on lembas? Sounds like a delicacy! Commented Nov 29, 2016 at 17:17
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    Poor Groin. That Farin must be heartless.
    – Tin Wizard
    Commented Nov 29, 2016 at 23:08
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    @oliver I think that's supposed to be Elf-friend, considering his amicable relationship with Legolas.
    – Nzall
    Commented Nov 30, 2016 at 8:35

Ok, let's do this one by one:

Balin, Dwalin, Glóin and Óin teamed up with Thorin to reclaim the Lonely Mountain.

Here you got an overview of the family tree.

enter image description here

Concerning The Lord of the Rings: Balin has become Lord of Moria and you can see his tomb in the Chamber of Mazarbul.


Yes, Balin is part of Thorin's group in The Hobbit. So is Gloin, father of Gimli. And Gimli is a member of the Fellowship of the Ring. Please refer to this listing of the Thorin's company from Wikipedia.

Balin and Gloin are first cousins (and so should be of similar age). That makes Gimli Balin's first cousin once removed (a kind of first cousin that is closer than second cousin). Here is a listing of family trees in Tolkien's world. You will need to search for Gimli.

If you recall, Gimli rushes to the tomb of his cousin, only to read the inscription "Here lies Balin, son of Fundin, Lord of Moria".

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