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Talk:Smaug

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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.
 
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 our 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. --{{User:Mith/sig}} 09:58, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
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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. --{{User:Mith/sig}} 09:58, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
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:I say, remove the pronunciation until it is referenced.--[[User:Morgan|Morgan]] 11:47, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
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::I second that. --[[User:Amroth|Amroth]] 11:57, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
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:::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]].
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:::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. -- {{User:Ederchil/sig}} 12:18, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
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::::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.
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::::It lists "au - as ''ou'' in 'out'".<ref>Henry Adams Bellows, ''The Poetic Edda'', "Pronouncing Index of Proper Names", p. 558</ref> 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 [[wikipedia:Aslaug|Aslaug]].
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::::"Smaug" is unattested "Germanic",<ref>{{L|25}}</ref> presumably what we would call Proto-Germanic. I can't find a (hypothetical/conjectural) pronunciation guide for PGmc.
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::::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/? -- {{User:Ederchil/sig}} 09:41, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
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:::::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. — [[User:Mithrennaith|Mithrennaith]] 05:02, 8 June 2011 (UTC)
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{{references}}

Latest revision as of 05:02, 8 June 2011

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)

[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] 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)