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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
hic sunt dracones


Oct 3 2012, 3:46pm

Views: 474
hic sunt dracones [In reply to] Can't Post

Would you consider Smaug to be the most famousest dragon of them all?

Difficult question to answer whilst musing on The Hobbit! Dragons are so pervasive in almost every culture that I imagine in different parts of the world, different dragons are more well-known (e.g., Tiamat). Even in British literature Grendel must give Smaug a run for his, ah, money (i.e., hoards of gold and jewels)...

Bilbo the Burglar steals a two-handled cup, which Douglas Anderson infers is based on the cup-stealing episode found in Beowulf...

I am intrigued by the stealing of the cup. What about it seems so right? If Bilbo had stolen a crown or a vase or whatever, it would not have had the same effect But the fact that it is a simple cup -- something seemingly insignificant -- seems to convey enormous significance. Does it underscore who Bilbo really is (a simple Hobbit with simple tastes)? Does it allude to some larger cultural significance?

Is Tolkien making a pointed social comment here - not only of dragons, but real-world millionaires and billionaires who hoard their money and count it to the last penny?

I think so, but also accessing the mythological dragon (like in Beowulf) that symbolizes the end and subsequent new beginning of a civilization/kingdom/realm, etc.

Subject User Time
** Inside Information ** Part II Burglar Baggins Morthoron Send a private message to Morthoron Sep 25 2012, 1:47pm
    Business plan Solicitr Send a private message to Solicitr Sep 25 2012, 3:02pm
        Underpants Gnomes and their mindless capitalistic endeavors aside... Morthoron Send a private message to Morthoron Sep 25 2012, 3:27pm
            Don't knock it, the plan worked Hamfast Gamgee Send a private message to Hamfast Gamgee Sep 25 2012, 11:10pm
    Inside Information demnation Send a private message to demnation Sep 26 2012, 1:07am
        Green Gas? Like Methane? Morthoron Send a private message to Morthoron Sep 26 2012, 1:46am
            'Tis a well known fact... Tweezers of Thu Send a private message to Tweezers of Thu Sep 26 2012, 11:53am
                Well, Thu... Morthoron Send a private message to Morthoron Sep 27 2012, 1:11am
            Jalapeno and Habanero? dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Sep 27 2012, 2:20am
    Answers sador Send a private message to sador Sep 27 2012, 2:12pm
    hic sunt dracones telain Send a private message to telain Oct 3 2012, 3:46pm


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