Part II: The Dwarf Kingdom in:

Denise Burkhard

Ancient Dwarf Kingdom or the Hoard of a Fiery Dragon?, page 31 - 58

J.R.R. Tolkien's Erebor as a Transformed and Dynamic Place

1. Edition 2017, ISBN print: 978-3-8288-3975-5, ISBN online: 978-3-8288-6774-1, https://doi.org/10.5771/9783828867741-31

Tectum, Baden-Baden
Bibliographic information
in Tolkien’s Writings ‘Long ago in my grandfather Thror’s time our family – ’ From Thorin’s retrospective account o pansion, the reader can draw many conclusions about the nature of Tolkien’s with dwarves more generally, scholars claim that Tolkien’s fiction tends to “[ preference” is “still in many ways very different from them” makes the analysis of Tolkien’s Tolkien’s early stories (‘The Nauglafring’, ‘Beren and Lúthien’, ‘Túrin’ and ‘The Coming of Men’), John D. Rateliff explains that “[t]hroughout these early perspective” The Hobbit the dwarves’ growing The Hobbit The Lord of the Rings The Hobbit Paul Acker, Matthew Bardowell and Jeffrey A. Weinstock. “Dwarf.”, 199. They further note that this can be seen in Tolkien’s plural of the word ‘ ’ Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, 383 [Letter 297: Drafts for a Letter to ‘Mr Rang’, August 1967]. The History of The Hobbit Rateliff’s “Anchoring the – The Hobbit on Tolkien’s Legendarium” “[i]n previous ‘Silmarillion’ material, if not outright evil, treacherous, and avaricious”, which reinforces their negative n. “Introduction.”, 1. “However, Tolkien’s image of Dwarves improved markedly in The Lord of the Rings Glóin”. Renée Vink. “‘Jewish’ Dwarves: Tolkien an Semitic Stereotyping.”, 128. of Tolkien’s dwarves and claims that “[t]heir depiction in The Hobbit development” children’s story “may mark a point dwarves as honorable rather than merely mercenary” The Lord of the Rings his “small, stout and bearded” eople are “lovers of stone, of gems, of things that take shape ” in Thorin’s The Silmarillion Renée Vink even argues that “[t]he Dwarves are also given a creation story of their own” “ ” the dwarves share his ‘profession’ The Lord of the Rings Stanton notes that “[w]e may suppose that like all great skill” some of the ‘professions’ It is said that “[h]is [Aulë’s] are the gems ” Michael N. Stanton remarks that “Dwarves mark one of the strongest elements of cont The Hobbit The Lord of the Rings”. Michael N. Stanton. Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards see John D. Rateliff. “Anchoring – The Hobbit Tolkien’s Legendarium.” 6 19; and Gerard Hynes. “From Nauglath to Durin’s Folk – The Hobbit and Tolkien’s Dwarves.”, Gerard Hynes. “From Nauglath to Durin’s Folk.”, 20. “Dwarves.” in: J The Tolkien Companion The Return of the King “‘Jewish’ Semitic Stereotyping.”,125. the ‘Valar’ ( “[t]he Guardians of the World” “Valar.” in: J The Tolkien Companion The Silmarillion Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards The Fellowship of the Ring The Silmarillion to the dwarves’ creation of The Hobbit. According to Thorin’s statement created without his permission, he concludes that the dwarves “shall sleep now in the darkness under stone” explains the dwarves’ preference dom by Thorin’s ancestor Thrain still live “under stone” ’s “‘ ’” “easily de ” remarks, “but – – ” in Tolkien’s Middle In the first part of Peter Jackson’s adaptation An Unexpected Journey Bilbo’s voice “‘ ’” the dwarves’ Grimm’s fairy tale “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”. Cf. P stock. “Dwarf.”, 199. The Silmarillion The Hobbit “‘ , […] [d]ark for dark bus ’”. The Hobbit The Silmarillion The Hobbit “Erebor.” in: J The Tolkien Companion The Return of the King An Unexpected Journey Peter Jackson’s adaptation shows an almost flat plain that is encircled by mountains Jackson’s adaptation which conveys the idea of diaspora, but also Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings From a ‘historical’ point o which Moria is best known, as its founder Durin was the “eldest and most royal ” that “many dispossessed ” “the breaking of Thangorodrim” “the Great Battle” , the kingdoms’ former inhabitants “flocked” to M . Although this movement led to an increase of Moria’s dragon’s attack An Unexpected Journey Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien tween Jews and the dwarves and uses Tolkien’s 1965 BBC interview with Denys The History of The Hobbit The Return of the King “ .” in: J The Tolkien Companion “Dwarves.” in: J The Tolkien Companion Ibid. In “The Quest of Erebor” bor. Cf. J.R.R. Tolkien. “The Quest of Erebor.”, 415. The Return of the King “ .” in: J The Tolkien Companion “ .” in: J The Tolkien Companion Postcolonial Literature “‘ ’” “‘ ’s Bane [the Balrog of ’” dwarves’ greed the Balrog, Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit The Lord of the Rings ntain because “the rumour of the wealth of Erebor spread abroad” While Tolkien focused primarily on the dragon’s greedy nature as the reason for Smaug’s attack on Erebor by making the dwarves’ desire for gold and ge ent also the dragon’s greed) the reason of the attack. ‘wandering folk’ in both the novel and the adaptation. “‘ Bill Ashcroft et al. “Diaspora.”, 425. The Fellowship of the Ring The Lord of the Rings “ ”, as “it by the malice of Sauron”. The Return of the King The Return of the King In Jackson’s adaptation, Bilbo’s voice “‘ ’” An Unexpected Journey ’” “‘ ’” Thorin’s ‘we’ Tolkien’s works, especially in the appendi The Lord of the Rings following the dragon’s attack went with their family and some of their kinsmen south “into long and homeless wandering” “just a stage in ” pect is enhanced by the term “wandering”, which in Tyler’s The Tolkien Companion in which he uses the terms “scattered”, “dispossessed” “dispersed” to describe the dwarves’ situation. “Thráin and Thorin with what remained of their following … made a home in exile ” The Hobbit Moreover, in Peter Jackson’s An Unexpected Journey “‘ ’”. An Unexpected Journey The Return of the King Postcolonial Literatures in English Cf. “Dwarves.” in: J The Tolkien Companion ’ situation: “ our racial identity and what we feel is spiritually ours by right. That’s why we’re up for ” The Desolation of Smaug – Official Movie Guide The Return of the King the “ cultural belonging” and was guarded “as a treasure of the past” “ spoke ever of the Lonely Mountain far away” John McLeod’s statement that people in diaspora are “ ” people and are partly the reason for and expression of the dwarves’ communal “[i]n the summer before Frodo’s fiftieth birthday, West Road that crossed the Shire” that the dwarves’ movements have not ceased afte The Lord of the Rings in which the narrator points out that “Frodo often met seeking refuge bled, and some spoke in whispers of the Enemy and of the Land of Mordor” in Tolkien’s children’s novel The Hobbit situated “in a lived te desiring another place” ‘ ’ which they sing in Bilbo’s hobbit the dwarves’ quest Postcolonial Literature The Return of the King Beginning Postcolonialism In the records of “The Quest of Erebor”, Thorin informs Gandalf that “‘ ’” J.R.R. Tolkien. “The Quest of Erebor.”, 430. Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards The Fellowship of the Ring James Clifford. “Diasporas.”, 453. In her analysis of songs in Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings Raduege claims that “[t]he songs and stories of Middle ” ‘ ’ kingdom and the dragon’s attack. When Bilbo Baggins hears this song for the “ ” Thorin’s subsequent pros “ ” kingdom from the dwarves’ present perspective, which is reminiscent of Salman Rushdie’s reconstruction of India , their ‘Erebor of the mind’. Bilbo’s hobbit “‘Far over the misty mountains cold ’” Exploring “‘Worthy of a Song’: Memory, Mortality and Music.”, 114. The Hobbit There and Back Again An Unexpected Journey to some of the songs sung in Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings “‘Worthy of a Song’: Memory, Mo tality and Music.”, 114. Postcolonial Nostalgias “‘Worthy of a Song’: Memory, Mortality and Music.”, 118. Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 1. , Moria. Thus, the adjective “cold” can also be seen in the context of the Balrog’s attack “‘dungeons deep and caverns old’” , which stress that “[t]he settings ” dwarves’ “‘pale enchanted gold ’” “pale” is rather unusual. “‘The forge’s fire is ashen-cold ’” The Fellowship of the Ring Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, Exploring means of foreshadowing: “The dwarves enlarge the prefiguration potential of incidents as the party’s capture by goblins in ‘dungeon’s deep and caverns old,’ escape from wargs through the ‘flaming spread’ of Gandalf’s fire, unleashing of ‘the dragon’s ire’ on Dale, and the ‘dying fall’ of Thorin in the final battle”. Steve Walker. The Power of Tolkien’s Prose Appendix: “Son onely Mountain”, l. 3. “‘Da ziehn wir hin, da lockt Gewinn / An Gold und Silber und Geschmeid’”. Das große Hobbit Buch The Hobbit to “The Quest of Erebor”, “‘ secretly’” day on purpose, as the roads are usually empty. J.R.R. Tolkien. “The Quest of Erebor.”, ix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 4. Beowulf ‘The Second Lay of Sigurd Fafnicide’ The Edda of Sæmund the Learned ‘ ’ Olsen remarks that this personal claim “is important, for at this point [in stanza five] the focus of the song turns from the treasure alone to the dwarves’ relationship with it” “‘pale enchanted gold ’” “‘long-forgotten gold ’” “‘To win our harps and gold from him’” ntire treasure, the tenth stanza expresses the dwarves’ ultimate ims that “ song it is to seek ‘pale enchanted go ’” dwarves’ “‘made mighty spells’” connection is, for instance, established in John Keats’ ballad “La Belle Dame Sans Merci”: in the ballad, the dyi “saw pale kings and Princes too / Pale warriors, death pale were they all”, who warn him of the s Keats. “La Belle Dame Sans Merci.”, 167, ll. 37 Cf. Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l Exploring Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 20. There and Back Again Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 5. “‘ringing bells’” “‘hollow halls’” “[s]tanzas three and four speak of a king of the elves in ancient times, who – ” “‘a gleaming golden hoard ’” Rateliff even claims with regard to these lines that they speak “not es’ skill but of the elves’ recognition thereo ” tion implies that the dwarves’ skills have been admired by the elves and hig Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 6. Cf. Gerard Hynes. “From Naug h to Durin’s Folk.”, 22. He exemplifies the close focusing on Thorin’s description of the Arke stone, which highlights the stone’s beauty rather than its value, as well as on Fili and Kili, There and Back Again ndix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 10. This clearly is an outdated point of “‘pale enchanted gold ’” “‘gleaming golden hoard ’” John D. Rateliff. “Anchoring the Myth.”, 14. is more doubtful about his elvish origin. Cf. “Bladorthin.” in: J The Tolkien Companion, 66.; cf. “Bladorthin.” in: Robert Foster. A Guide to Middle-Earth The Hobbit the two stanzas that there is a commissioner for the dwarves’ objects. On the dwarves’ skills that are “[a]lthough the home of the dwarves sounds dark and gloomy, the works of craft ” “‘meshed the light of moon and sun’” “ ” “[ ‘gleaming golden hoard’ is their sun and moon, the focus of their love and their ” Tolkien’s The Silmarillion rion’s light was si Laurelin’s golden to ‘heal’ them Exploring Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 16. There and Back Again Exploring This connection is prominently used in fairy tales, as Max Lüthi explains: “But because probably always been a symbol of the sun, or at least been connected with the sun”. Max The Fairytale The Silmarillion The Silmarillion Fëanor “pondered how the the glory of the Blessed Realm able” “‘flowering stars’” ‘ ’ a ‘ ’ of the dwarves’ famous objects, the sixth stanza entres on the dwarves’ sign for the dwarves’ can be seen when Thorin plays his “b harp” stanza are a strong focus on the dwarves’ remote habitat and the items they arves’ “secrecy and possessiveness” “‘where no man delves’” “‘[w]as sung un- The Silmarillion their own accord, which is why they were guided by two Maiar: “The maiden whom the oon was Tilion”. Ibid., 110. Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 14. The idea of starlight caught in gems is picked up in Peter Jackson’s The Desolation of Smaug “‘ ’” The Desolation of Smaug The Battle of the Five Armies “‘ ’” The Battle of the Five Armies Cf. Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, ll. 13 The Hobbit The Hobbit Exploring Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 22. heard by men or elves’” son’s adaptation suggests that the dwarves’ ‘Odyssean pattern’ as identified by Lucy Waddey, because the dwarves “romanticize their […] [home]” dwarves’ determination to reclaim their home The Lord of the Rings Thorin’s answer to Thrain’s question whether he would like to go back to the anvil or “‘ … ’” “‘ … again’” “remembering/ ” The Hobbit upon the king’s return “ gates” “ ” Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 24. the song and argues that “[t]he song also emphasizes that dwarves have a culture and a adition of art of which humans and elves are entirely ignorant”, which demonstrates that “From Nauglath to Durin’s Folk.”, 25. goblin’s cave, when Bofur says: “‘No, no, you can’t turn back now, eh? You’re part of the company. You’re one of us’” “‘I’m not, though, am I? ’” An Unexpected Journey in Thorin’s choice of words when refers as ‘the burglar’. Jackson’s An Unexpected Journey, in which he sings that the dwarves have “ echoes on”. Ibid., “Home in Children’s Literature.”, 13. “Diasporas.”, 454. The Return of the King James Clifford. “Diasporas.”, 453. The Hobbit “‘The woods shall wave on mountains / And grass beneath the sun; / His wealth shall flow in fountains / And the rivers golden run. / The streams shall run in gladness, / The lakes shall shine and burn, / All sorrow fail and sadness / At the Mountain-king’s return!’” Corey Olsen’s words, “[u]nder fabled dwarvish Kingdom Under the Mountain” ng about in the ‘Song of the Lonely Mountain’, own kingdom. The kingdom in the ‘Song of the Lonely Mountain’ “‘ ’” – The Hobbit Exploring Spaces and Places in Motion The Hobbit (Girion’s necklace and the Arke ‘ ’ – “‘hilt of sword ’” the items have been made are “long dead”. Girion’s necklace or the Thror’s cup. The Hobbit Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 12. Thorin when they explore the dragon’s hoard. Cf. J.R.R. Tolkien. The Hobbit Peter Jackson’s adaptation, Thorin stresses the protective powers associated with “‘ No blade can pierce it’” The Battle of the Five Armies days is made explicit: “Long hours in the past days Thorin had spent in the treasury, and about which were wound old memories of the labours and the sorrows of his race”. J.R.R. Tolkien. The Hobbit Rushdie’s experiences in India. Cf. Salman Rushdie. “Imag nary Homelands.”, 9 “‘ ’” In his analysis of this “great white gem of brilliant translucency” erton analyses the Arkenstone’s The Lord of the Rings The Silmarillion enstone “is a source of enchantment, the focus of men’s desires and sel the story have to play” whole hoard, but also part of his family’s inheritance and his Jackson’s audio visual adaptation, in which the Arkenstone is also named ‘The King’s Jewel’ and linked with ruler “‘ ’” “ made with his desires, will and emotions” “is bound up with the lust for power that has been projected artisan Sauron” and the Silmarils, which “are ” “‘ … ’” “[ rain; and this is the crux: the Arkenstone is a natural phenomenon” The Hobbit The Desolation of Smaug “Arkenstone.” in: J.E.A. Tyler. The Tolkien Companion There and Back Again The History of the Hobbit Rateliff also includes a subchapter on “The Arkenstone as Silmaril”, in which he has a closer look at the origins of the Arkenstone in Tolkien’s legendarium and even speculates The History of The Hobbit There and Back Again An Unexpected Journey There and Back Again The Hobbit There and Back Again statement can also be expanded, since Thorin’s comparisons are not only natural ultimately leads to the Arkenstone’s appearance “was ” ‘ ’ : “Thorin’s love for the Arkenstone is not a reflection of his reverence ” ‘ ’ , since the dwarves “cut and fashioned” , so that Olsen’s Arkenstone’s ‘ ’ “to a certain extent with personality” the Lonely Mountain, it has “its dark head in a torn cloud” ems “to frown at him [Bilbo] and threaten him as it drew nearer” [i]n Tolkien’s fiction, especially perhaps in his tales of Middle The Hobbit it over to Bard: “It was as if a globe had been filled with moonlight and hung be stars”. Exploring Judith Kollmann assume that in Peter Jackson’s adaptations “Thorin is obsessed with the because of its symbolic value”. Frank P. Riga, Maureen Thum and Judith Kollmann. “From Children’s Book to Epic Prequel.”, 113 The Hobbit There and Back Again The Hobbit Liam Campbell. “Nature.”, 440. he mountain’s ‘ ’ ‘body metaphor’. This metaphor in the mountain’s ‘ ’ dragon’s attack took place only of the Arkenstone resulted in the dragon’s attack. In both the novel and the “beneath ountain” s connected with greed is ‘dragon sickness’, the love for gold that resulted in the destruction of Erebor. It seems as if the dwarves’ “‘mighty spells’” “ … ” There and Back Again notes that Bilbo is often ‘drawn’ to the treasure; he argues that “[t]he past participle drawn agent – him towards it” and uses Bilbo’s findi upports Atherton’s assumption. Cf. Paul Acker, Matthew Bardowell and Jeffrey A. Weinstock. “Dwarf.”, 200. Despite the fact that Bilbo’s voice “‘ ’” An Unexpected Journey 2:52. Two scenes in Jackson’s An Unexpected Journey ‘throne room’ Thror’s throne. Secondly, when the miners, who are digging f The Hobbit Smaug’s and the Balrog’s desire is similar, the mithri Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 5. The Hobbit in all dwarves: “a e fierce”. J.R.R. Tolkien. The Hobbit Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards “ back through their fingers with a sigh” further and observes with focus on Peter Jackson’s adaptations that Thorin “becomes crazed by the ‘dragon sickness’, an ugly greed that pervades the place ” that the destination of the dwarves’ journey ‘ ’ owever, the actual ‘encounter’ with the mountain ‘ ’ ‘ ’ “‘ [Thorin’s gran father’s] ’” the treasure’s – similar to Rushdie’s experiences in India – “capable of reclaiming precisely the thing that was lost” “‘win our harps and gold ’” from the dragon, as the ‘Song of the Lonely Mountain’ Peter Jackson’s ‘ ’ The Hobbit Kate Muir. “One Film to ll.” The Hobbit “Imaginary Homelands.”, 10. Appendix: “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. Das große Hobbit Buch ing dragon. He expands Tolkien’s novel “by not only completing the work, but hildren’s novel to adult film” Tolkien’s Jackson’s adaptation gives considerable recognition movie does not solely rely on Thorin’s d the temporal gap between the dragon’s attack focalizer in Tolkien’s novel. At the beginning of The Hobbit e is “sharing their [the dwarves’] exper ” An Unexpected Journey addresses the dwarves’ . By implication, the ‘Song of the Lonely Mountain’ the dwarves’ nostalgia movie, the viewer is introduced to the dwarves’ diasporic situation, their dete Bilbo’s frame narration, which, in terms of Thorin’s Frank P. Riga, Maureen Thum and Judith Kollmann. “From Children’s Book to Epic Prequel.”, 98. The Return of the King Exploring the dwarves’ situation and contextualises the Jackson’s introduction ‘ ’ Thorin’s subsequent explanation “‘ ’” “‘ ’” “‘ ’” Similar to the stanzas of the ‘Song of the Lonely Mountain’, which ‘ ’ The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey The Hobbit Lord of the Rings that dwarf women “seldom walk abroad except at great need” and on journeys they are “so like dwarf men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart”. The Return of the King women; she shares the dwarves’ corpulence and wears a is reminiscent of Nori’s. An Unexpected Journey nt at the dwarves’ secretiveness the dwarves’ craf , the dwarves’ ’s ‘ ’ “‘ ’” of words used in Bilbo’s voice “‘ ’” “‘ ’” e, Thror’s throne room is lined with e dwarves’ ‘pillars’ on which the kingdom massive stalactite, crossed by golden ‘veins’, that merges with Thror’s throne is another element that reinforce suggests that the gold is ‘flowing’ from the mount may be seen as a first hint at Thror’s avarice. The Desolation of Smaug “‘ ’” An Unexpected Journey An Unexpected Journey The throne’s position riches that accumulate underneath him. Thus, he is, similar to the dragon, ‘si ting’ on the hoard and treasures Erebor. Thror’s “wears a tunic of midnight blue, studded with silver and a large silver th a sword at his side” highlighted by Bilbo’s voice “‘ ’” ’s texture of Erebor’s walls, his drawing ‘Conversation with Smaug’ dwarf kingdom in Peter Jackson’s adaptation is reminiscent of what Dorothy sees when she arrives in the Emerald City in L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz The Desolation of Smaug Frank P. Riga, Maureen Thum and Judith Kollmann. “From Children’s Book to Epic Prequel.”, 113. While Thorin’s clothes hardly display An Unexpected Journey The Battle of the Five Armies wears his grandfather’s crown, with golden applications. The change of his clothes already hints at Thorin’s dragon sickness and his avarice. In this context, he also begins to refer to himself as ‘King’ and The Battle of the Five Armies An Unexpected Journey Das große Hobbit Buch The effect on the viewer of Jackson’s Hobbit introduction of Erebor is similar to Dorothy’s first impression of the Emerald City, which is likewise associated with wealth and prosperity. As in Baum’s “‘hollow halls beneath the fells’” ‘Song of the Lonely Mountain’. They transforme workshops. In Bilbo’s voice one of Jackson’s huge city within the mountain, it does not adopt the novel’s emphasis on co “‘sung unheard by men or elves’” The Wonderful Wizard of Oz “‘But isn’t everything here green?’ asked Dorothy. ‘No more than in any other city,’ replied Oz; ‘but when you wear ’” fairy tales that elaborate on the setting: “[a] city or a bridge […] of metal – – is […] not a curiosity but rather, with its abstract un formity and timelessness, in its way a perfect creation” The Fairytale and the dwarves’ skill by foregrounding the materials that have been used to build it. : “Song of the Lonely Mountain”, l. 8.

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Abstract

In J. R. R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” (1937), Erebor is both the ancient home of the dwarves, which has been conquered and is now occupied by the dragon Smaug, and the destination of the quest of thirteen dwarves and a hobbit, who aim at regaining Erebor from the claws of the dragon. On their way to the mountain, the dwarves constantly remember the old days in which their ancestors mined and crafted beautiful objects inside the walls of Erebor. Their thoughts are, however, frequently overshadowed by concerns about Smaug, who transformed the dwarf kingdom into a dragon hoard and is now sleeping on the gold.

Denise Burkhard delves into Tolkien’s children’s novel and Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit” trilogy (2012–2014) and explores the depiction of Erebor. The analysis focuses on the dwarves’ reconstruction of the old kingdom, the ideas of home and belonging in the context of the dwarves’ diasporic situation as well as on the destruction and the reshaping(s) of the mountain. The adverse depictions of Erebor as dwarf kingdom and dragon hoard are examined by having a closer look at the dwarves, the sinister dragon and the enormous hoard in the novel as well as in Peter Jackson’s audio-visual interpretations.