Why does Bilbo give the Arkenstone to Bard? Do you view this as a betrayal of Thorin and company?
Bilbo just wants to keep his friends from being hurt, and he wants to spare the Lakemen and elves from bloodshed. Bilbo certainly doesn't view this as a betrayal - after all, he's probably saving his friends lives yet again, this time from their own stubbornness. Bilbo knows that Thorin will only negotiate if he risks losing his precious Arkenstone.
After Thorin's death, Bilbo is angry at himself and says, "There was a battle in spite of your efforts to buy peace." Is there anything Bilbo could have done to prevent the battle?
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