Thor's Hammer was an Asgard device that protected the people of Cimmeria from Goa'uld interference. According to legend, the Hammer was said to be a great weapon, wielded by the god Thor. In reality, the Hammer was a complicated collection of devices, consisting of several parts, serving as Cimmeria's only line of defense.
The device was placed on at least one Protected Planet, which was considered off limits to the Goa'uld. The Asgard High Council had designated Cimmeria a safe world for developing sentient species by unanimous decree, Era 40.73.29. The Goa'uld System Lords were so informed, and subsequently warned not to visit the planet. However, other Protected Planets, such as K'tau, were not defended by a similar device.
Thor's Hammer was composed from several parts. Every person that came through the Stargate on Cimmeria was scanned by an obelisk bearing the Hammer symbol. If the obelisk detected the presence of a Goa'uld symbiote or larva, the subject was transported to a network of caves. In these caves, the Goa'uld or Jaffa would be confronted by a hologram of Thor. This hologram informs the prisoners of their choice, to spend eternity in the bleak labyrinth or to face the Hammer and have the Goa'uld parasite destroyed, leaving the host body free. Inside the network of caves, Goa'uld weapons and other technology will not work. However, once taken back out the weapons function as before.
The labyrinth's exit was blocked by an Asgard energy field of high intensity, preventing the symbiote from escaping the Cimmerian subterranean prison. Shaped in the general T-formation of Thor's fabled hammer, the device itself stood more than a dozen feet tall. The hammer, integrated into the doorway of the only exit of the caves, permitted passage for Humans, but not Humans or Jaffa with Goa'uld symbiotes. When a symbiote would enter the doorway, the energy field would be activated, holding the victim still and, if exposed to the energy field long enough, killing his symbiote. (SG1: "Thor's Hammer", "Red Sky")
For centuries, the device had kept the Goa'uld from invading Cimmeria. All Goa'uld, even their Jaffa underlings, are taught the location of Cimmeria for one reason: never go there. For thousands of years, any Goa'uld or Jaffa that went to Cimmeria was never seen or heard from again. (SG1: "Thor's Hammer")
Discovery by SG-1
When Dr. Daniel Jackson began to realize that the Goa'uld had not created the Stargates, SG-1 visited Cimmeria in the hope of making contact with Thor or his race, the Asgard. However, upon their arrival, Teal'c, a Jaffa, was scanned. The Hammer detected the larval Goa'uld inside his body, and transported him to the caves along with Colonel Jack O'Neill, who had tried to stop the transport beam and was caught up in it along with him.
The pair eventually came to the actual Hammer in the Hall of Mjolnir, which Teal'c couldn't pass through since he would die if he were to lose his Goa'uld larva. The two managed to use it to kill the Goa'uld Ruax in an Unas host. With the Goa'uld dead, Ruax's host finally died as he was fatally wounded by gunfire from Teal'c and O'Neill and was no longer able to heal without his symbiote. Daniel was subsequently forced to destroy Thor's Hammer in order to save Teal'c's life. Daniel was hesitant because the Hammer could also have theoretically been used to remove the Goa'uld Amaunet from his wife Sha're. However, SG-1 was convinced that the Goa'uld would still believe Cimmeria to be protected, as the scanner and teleporter by the Stargate were still in place. (SG1: "Thor's Hammer")
Invasion by Heru'ur
SG-1's theory was eventually disproven when the System Lord Heru'ur invaded Cimmeria. Desperate for help, the Cimmerians sent a message to Stargate Command. Forced to take responsibility for their previous actions, SG-1 was sent back to Cimmeria in the faint hopes of fighting the Goa'uld forces.
However, it soon became evident that the team did not have the means to fight the powerful System Lord. Faced with no other option, Dr. Daniel Jackson and Captain Samantha Carter searched for a way of contacting the Asgard to inform them about the invasion while Teal'c and Colonel Jack O'Neill attempted to stall the invading Jaffa. After solving several riddles and passing the Test of Worthiness, the two were successful in contacting Thor, who arrived in his Asgard mothership, and destroyed all Goa'uld forces that did not flee upon his arrival. He informed SG-1 that he would repair the Hammer, but the new Hammer would make an exception for the Jaffa known as Teal'c. (SG1: "Thor's Chariot")
Allusions and Outside References
- In Norse mythology, Thor's Hammer is named Mjölnir (myōl•neer)("the Grinder/Crusher"), one of the fiercest weapons along with Odin's spear Gungnir. In the Norse legend Skálskaparmál, the dwarf brothers Sindri and Brokkr manufacture the hammer via a wager with Loki. The finished product is presented to Thor who is told that the hammer is indestructible, will never miss its target, and will never fly so far that it won't return to him. However, as a result of Loki's meddling, the shortened handle of the hammer was a flaw in its creation which meant the hammer could only be wielded with one hand.
- In the Marvel Cinematic Universe films featuring Thor (Thor, The Avengers, Thor: The Dark World, The Avengers: Age of Ultron), Thor's hammer exhibits the properties described in Norse legend with the added caveats that it was forged in the heart of a dying star (enhancing its mystical properties) and by decree of Odin, only someone with Thor's worthiness could handle the hammer.
- In the Halo video game franchise, a variation of Mjölnir (MJOLNIR) is used as the name of the powered assault armor conceived for members of the SPARTAN-II supersoldier program, which includes the main protagonist Master Chief Petty Officer John-117. The armor undergoes numerous revisions through the series, and is considered a very powerful offensive and defensive weapon against the series antagonists. Featuring a powerful neural interface which can allow for an uplink to advanced A.I., a Heads Up Display (HUD), tough alloy composition, multiple magnetic weapons mounts, energy shielding, and a vacuum seal.
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