Prelude to the Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien
Literary Element: Antagonist
"Above him the sleeping dragon lay, a dire menace even in his sleep...Then Bilbo fled. But the dragon did not wake―not yet―but shifted into other dreams of greed and violence lying there in his stolen hall..."
Antagonist: The Evil Under the Mountain
In a mountain, there once was a home, a town filled with dwarves, and gold. Lots and lots of gold filling underground caverns, and spilling out of a magnificent palace. Nearby this mountain, there was once a town full of people who were happy, living joyful lives. It was a Golden Age, until one soul, swept all of it away.This is Smaug a magnificent dragon, his mind warped with its menacing greed for gold, and its capability for violence. He is the antagonist in The Hobbit, and the one who changed the Lonely Mountain and everyone around it. He instilled a constant terror in the people, fearing of Smaug somehow incurring his wrath on them, and drove the dwarves out of their own home, taking control. Smaug stole all of the gold and the dwarves’ most prized possession, the Arkenstone―a breathtaking precious jewel, radiating its effulgent beauty. He scares every creature who sees him on sight and terrorizes towns, later even burning one down
completely in rage. Smaug’s main intentions were most likely driven by greed and his thirst for power. He wanted everything for himself, and soon any form of empathy inside of him was replaced by heinous thoughts as the author explains to the reader saying, “Above him the sleeping dragon lay, a dire menace even in his sleep...Then Bilbo fled. But the dragon did not wake―not yet―but shifted into other dreams of greed and violence lying there in his stolen hall..." The author shows the main character fleeing from the dragon’s chambers, realizing the danger of being in there near the dragon. Smaug’s thoughts are also shown to only be things held up by greed and violence, and the author states that the dragon was living in the home that was someone elses―a home that Smaug stole.