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Greed and Excess in The Hobbit

            In JRR Tolkien's "The Hobbit," Bilbo is taken from his home to travel on an unforgettable journey, challenging some of his greatest enemies; giant spiders, goblins, and the dragon, Smaug - just to find that the most powerful enemy of all is not of the physical, but the intangible: greed. "The Hobbit" is based around the search and seizure of treasure – the quest for the gold is filled with perils that many are willing to brave in order to reach their goal. Bilbo has nearly the slightest amount of greed compared to his fellow company: Smaug, the dwarves, and Gollum; each of these characters, throughout the novel, want to fulfill their greed, which is simply the root of corruption.
             Smaug is one of the main examples of greed within "The Hobbit." He is an evil, greedy dragon who hoarded all of his gold so no one could take it from him. When Smaug stole the treasure of Thor, the dwarves swore vengeance upon him in their quest to steal the gold back. Smaug later tries to destroy another town, which is where he ends up dying when he was pierced with a black arrow. Smaug had everything he wanted, yet he had to continue with poor judgment, and destroy another town. He collected treasure and killed for treasure although it just served him as a golden bed. If he was content with what he had, death could have been avoided. When greed took over, there was no turning back for Smaug. With his love for shiny, expensive things, he wanted everything and thought nothing would be able to stop him from getting it. .
             Although Smaug was a main contributor of greed to the novel, the dwarves were fueled by greed throughout the progression of the story, mainly because the reason for their journey is to recover the gold that is being hoarded by Smaug. It is clear that their motivation behind retrieving the gold was greed. They spent years upon years working in the mines and the sound of riches couldn't be ignored.

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