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In General Cas. Co. of Wisconsin v. Wozniak Travel, Inc., 2009 WL 702437 (Minn.), Tolkien Enterprises sued Wozniak Travel, Inc. d/b/a Hobbit Travel, alleging trademark infringement, trademark dilution, and unfair competition arising from the wrongful use of the word “hobbit” in Hobbit Travel’s business name.

Hobbit Travel had been operating under that name since 1976. Tolkien Enterprises owns the right to use and license trademarks relating to J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, as Professor Tolkien had created the term “hobbit” in the 1930s to describe fictional, three-foot-tall characters featured in the novels.

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