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Talk:Smaug

I would have liked to include Smaug's own quote describing himself -- "My armor is like tenfold shields, my teeth are like swords..." etc. -- but I don't have the book handy and it wasn't a quick find online.

"My armour is like tenfold shields, my teeth are swords, my claws spears, the shock of my tail a thunderbolt, my wings a hurricane, and my breath death!" - The Hobbit, Ch. 12 'Inside Information'.
--Earendilyon 16:52, 31 October 2006 (EST)
Thanks, Earendilyon. --Ted C 17:40, 31 October 2006 (EST)
Um, I already put that in the article. --Narfil Palùrfalas 18:16, 31 October 2006 (EST)

I'm considering a major rewrite of this article. As written, it goes well beyond the role of Smaug in The Hobbit, and if there's any background for Smaug outside The Hobbit, it's not included here. --Ted C 17:40, 31 October 2006 (EST)

Contents

[edit] Pronunciation

Is there any instance of Tolkien saying "Smaug" on tape? Can we be 100% certain about the pronunciation of this? Although AppE says "au" makes an "ow" sound as in "how" (not an "aw" sound as in "thaw"), if you read it carefully that paragraph applies to Quenya and Sindarin pronunciations.

If we can't be sure we should take out the IPA at the top and the spoken file because they amount to one editor's view. If pronunciation is a matter of interpretation, we should honestly say so. --Mith (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 09:58, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

I say, remove the pronunciation until it is referenced.--Morgan 11:47, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
I second that. --Amroth 11:57, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
I third. The pronunciation table of Appendix E is obviously not relevant for pseudo-Old Norse. A quick search on the net gets more results for "smowg" than "smog", but never a source. They sometimes point to Fauskanger's Mannish article on Ardalambion, but it only discusses the origins of the name, not the pronunciation; it's just a rehash of Letter 25.
I'm not sure if Tolkien ever pronounced the name. However, looking at its roots, we should probably consult an Old Norse pronunciation guide or something for this. -- Ederchil (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 12:18, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Henry Adams Bellows' 1936 edition of The Poetic Edda has a pronunciation guide. It does say some of the sounds are approximations or conjecture, but doesn't say which ones.
It lists "au - as ou in 'out'".[1] It does not mention if the sound depends on the consonant following it (for example, is /-aug/ different from /-aut/ or /-aum/?) /-Aug/ is an attested ending in Old Norse, see Aslaug.
"Smaug" is unattested "Germanic",[2] presumably what we would call Proto-Germanic. I can't find a (hypothetical/conjectural) pronunciation guide for PGmc.
So, in short: if we treat it as an Old Norse name, it's Sm-ow-g. If we treat it as Germanic, I'm not too sure, but probably Sm-ow-g as well. It may need some additional (and if possible, more modern) sources. Maybe do some OR by checking what other contemporary Germanic languages do to the /-aug/? -- Ederchil (Talk/Contribs/Edits) 09:41, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Tom Shippey pronounces it as Sm-ow-g, or nearly so; that’s good enough for me. And indeed there are recordings available of Tolkien reading from The Hobbit — I’m sure Smaug is mentioned somewhere in the recorded fragments and I’ll find out how he says it. — Mithrennaith 05:02, 8 June 2011 (UTC)

[edit] Gallery

May I ask why isn't there a "Gallery" section in the Dragon infobox? Woolly Mammoth 13:34, 10 June 2015 (UTC)

[edit] Is he from Angband?

The article of Michael Martinez is an interesting speculation, but it miss a very big point: we know that dragons ran away from Beleriand and they hide. Smaug could wait for thousand of years, just like Dúrin's Bane. There is no info about dragons breeding in their secret places and there was no Dark Lord waiting to release them. Of course we can't be sure that Smaug was born in Angband, but we can asume that more easily than he was a grown up in an specific year. --LorenzoCB 09:10, 17 December 2019 (UTC)

You seem to be missing or ignoring a crucial point Martinez's article points out - The Hobbit book specifies Smaug was not fully grown when he attacked Erebor. Granted, that doesn't negate the possibility he could have hibernated like Durin's Bane and it halted his maturation. But your statement it's "speculative" that Smaug was born long after the War of Wrath or that dragons can reproduce without a Dark Lord, in light of your own idea about how Smaug could have been a survivor of the war and in light of the argument on LOTR Wikia and in Martinez's article, is very much a kettle calling the teapot black. Therefore, I'll remove your own speculation and add what the book indicated, with a reference this time. 92.14.141.176 18:01, 30 December 2019 (UTC)

References

  1. Henry Adams Bellows, The Poetic Edda, "Pronouncing Index of Proper Names", p. 558
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 25, (dated February 1938)