- "It was a globe with a thousand facets; it shone like silver in the firelight, like water in the sun, like snow under the stars, like rain upon the Moon!"
- —Thorin Oakenshield
The Arkenstone of Thrain, also known as the Heart of the Mountain and the King's Jewel, was a wondrous gem sought by Thorin Oakenshield in J. R. R. Tolkien's The Hobbit. It was discovered beneath the Lonely Mountain by Thorin's grandfather Thror and shaped by the dwarves. The Arkenstone became the family heirloom of Durin's folk, but was lost when the dragon Smaug captured the mountain from the dwarves.
The Arkenstone shone of its own inner light, and appeared a little globe of pallid light in darkness, and yet, cut and fashioned by the Dwarves, it took all light that fell upon it and changed it into ten thousand sparks of white radiance, shot with glints of the rainbow.
The Arkenstone was a gem, the object most prized by Thorin Oakenshield of all the treasures of the Lonely Mountain. Such did he consider its value that he was willing to trade 1/13th of all the gold and silver of Smaug's hoard for it. In the recent The Hobbit movie it is presented as the most valued possession of Thrór, King under the Mountain, of the house of Durin. In these movies, when Smaug attacked the Lonely Mountain, Thrór's first action was to collect the Arkenstone. Unfortunately, as he tried to flee, he was confronted by the dragon in the gold hoard, causing him to drop the Arkenstone and lose it amongst the gold that Smaug was hoarding. Thorin stopped him from searching for it, helping him escape from the dragon instead.
When Bilbo Baggins found it on Smaug's golden bed deep inside the Lonely Mountain, he pocketed it, having learned how much Thorin valued it. While the dwarves with Thorin sorted the treasure, Thorin sought only the Arkenstone, unaware that Bilbo was hiding it in his pillow. When the dwarves refused to share any of the treasure with King Thranduil and Bard, the man who had killed Smaug the Magnificent, Bilbo crept out of the dwarves' fort inside the Mountain, and gave them the Arkenstone; Bard, Thranduil, and Gandalf then tried to trade it for Bilbo's thirteenth share of Smaug's hoard. Then an evil army arriving from the Grey Mountains interrupted the dispute, the Battle of the Five Armies ensued, and Thorin was killed. The Arkenstone was placed upon Thorin's chest within his tomb deep under the Lonely Mountain, and so was returned to the earth at last.
The name Arkenstone may have been related to the Gothic word aírkns ("holy").
Translations around the WorldEdit
|Foreign Language||Translated name|
|Portuguese (Brazil)||Pedra Arken|
|Spanish (Spain and Latin America)||Piedra del Arca|
|Chinese (Hong Kong)||家傳寶鑽|
- In Gene Deitch's film adaptation in 1966, Arkenstone was a heart-shaped jewel of Earth. It was later used as an arrowhead and, along with a large crossbow made of old mining machines, Bilbo and company used it to kill Slag the Dragon.
- In the movie, it is depicted as being from the earth. It is the reason the quest is set in the films as it would have given the dwarves the power to unite against Smaug.
- Some Tolkien scholars have linked the Arkenstone with an allegory of the Jewish Ark of the Covenant, making it the most longed-for possession of a folk displaced from their spiritual homeland.
- Some say that the Arkenstone is in fact the Silmaril of Maedhros.
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- ↑ The Hobbit, Chapter XII: "Inside Information"
- ↑ The Hobbit, Chapter XIII: "Not at Home"
- ↑ The Hobbit, Chapter XVI, "A Thief in the Night"
- ↑ The Hobbit, Chapter XVIII, "The Return Journey"
- ↑ The History of Middle-earth, Vol. 4: The Shaping of Middle-earth, VI: "The Earliest Annals of Valinor"