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Beowulf - Long ago, at the beginning of creation, two brothers, Cain and Abel lived peacefully, until Cain killed Abel, starting a blood-feud of kin-murder. This legacy of kin-murder was passed down through time, for the murder split the bloodline into two groups: Abel's, whose descendants were human, and Cain's, whose descendants were monstrous and sub-human. The poem Beowulf begins with this legacy of kin-murder and revenge. In Denmark, an evil monster, Grendel, who is ritually ravaging his kingdom, torments King Hrothgar....   [tags: Beowulf] 930 words
(2.7 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf Beowulf is a story that takes place in medieval Europe, the main part of the story is about a knight, Beowulf, that has to fight evil creatures such as a dragon. No one is exactly sure who wrote Beowulf, Paleographers believe from characteristics of the scribal hands that wrote the soul surviving text, that the manuscript was copied down in the late tenth century or early eleventh. This early copy of Beowulf is still around today. This single manuscript can be found in the British Library in London....   [tags: Beowulf] 1372 words
(3.9 pages)
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Beowulf - “…All things in the world are two. In our minds we are two, good and evil.” In the story Beowulf good and evil are portrayed in a very black and white manner. There are three basic sets of good and evil characters. The good characters being Beowulf, Hrothgar, and Wiglaf. The bad characters being Grendel, his mother, and the dragon. Their reputations, the manner in which they use their strengths, and their surroundings define the evil characters, and the good alike. A lot of times your reputation will say more about you than you ever could....   [tags: Beowulf] 351 words
(1 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf Word has traveled across the seas to Geatland of a great disturbance in Heorot. A threatening creature has befallen on Hrothgar, King of the Danes, and his people. In no time, a Geat by the name of Beowulf arrives at Heorot. However, why would one man, an unpopular man at that, not known of possessing any strength or talent, travel a great distance to offer his services to the Danes. Textual evidence provides that Beowulf, although he proves himself brave and strong, expresses his ego through boasting of his epic deeds, illuminating on his strength and wit....   [tags: Beowulf essays] 1526 words
(4.4 pages)
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Beowulf - Throughout life a man makes many descions which determine the way his life will be lived and the way it will end. All choices a man makes in his life have consequences and each man must account for them. In life, every man must reap what he has sown. The values a man holds to be important in his life govern the choices he makes. The epic Beowulf is a good example of this truth. In the story, Beowulf is a god-like human who possesses a strength and warrior spirit unmatched by anyone. The choices he has made resulted in this power and it is also those same choices that play a part in his end....   [tags: Beowulf Poetry] 1312 words
(3.7 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf Beowulf, the hero of the epic poem, is not an ordinary man; he is the epitome of a true hero. With the strength of thirty men in one arm, the courage to fight monsters, and the knowledge to respect and consider others' feelings, Beowulf defines the word "hero." As a thane of the Geats' king Hygelac, and later as king of the Geats, Beowulf uses his courage and wisdom to help him win many battles and competitions against humans and monsters. Beowulf's list of victories consists of his swimming contest with Breca, the slaying of sea monsters, the dismembering of the monster Grendel, decapitating Grendel (or Grendel's mother), and killing the dragon....   [tags: Beowulf Epic Poem Essays] 615 words
(1.8 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf As the welcoming celebration for Beowulf goes on, Unferth begins to ridicule Beowulf about his swimming competition with Breca. Unferth is jealous and feels threatened by Beowulf " for he would not allow that any other man of middle-earth should ever achieve more glory under the heavens than himself." (Norton p. 33) Unferth is a very peculiar character. Although he has committed the horrific crime of killing his brother(s), he is privileged enough to sit at the feet of the king, a very respected position....   [tags: Poem Poet Beowulf Essays]
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1280 words
(3.7 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf      This essay is the comparison between Beowulf and the modern day hero, which I thought that any soldier would be my modern day hero. In this essay I will explain in three paragraphs of how my modern day hero is like Beowulf. With in these three paragraphs I will go over how they are both fighting for a good cause, how they are both rewarded for what they do, and how they are both treated with much respect.      The first comparison is how they are both fighting for a good cause, and I mean that they are trying to protect people, and doing the right thing....   [tags: Beowulf Compare contrast Essays] 402 words
(1.1 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf Beowulf is the main character in the poem, Beowulf. He is a member of the Geat tribe, a follower of Higylac, and the son of Edgtheo. In the poem, the author attempts to reconcile the human and the heroic sides of his personality. Beowulf's deeds and actions toward others reflect his heroic personality. He is described as "…greater/And stronger than anyone anywhere in this world," although there is no information as to how he has received this reputation. We learn about the main character more through the eyes of the Danish soldier patrolling the cliffs....   [tags: Poem Poet Beowulf Essays]
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895 words
(2.6 pages)
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Beowulf - Beowulf The epic poem Beowulf is a story of heroes and monsters, good and evil. The poem tells about the accomplishments and deeds of a legendary Geatish hero who first rids the Danish kingdom of Hrothgar of two demonic monsters: Grendel and Grendel's mother. Later in the story, Beowulf meets a dragon, kills it with the help of Wiglaf, but dies of wounds. No one knows who wrote Beowulf. It was not really written in the way that literature is written now. It is an epic poem, meant to be spoken aloud, very few of them were ever written down, and very few of them survived into modern times....   [tags: Beowulf Poem Poet Poetic Essays]
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Beowulf - Beowulf “Alone shall fight for me, struggle for life against the monster, God must decide who will be given to death’s cold grip. Grendel’s plan, I think, will be what it has been before, to invade this hall and gorge his belly with our bodies.” (Lines 268-273) This quote was said by Beowulf a little while before he fought Grendal. This quote shows that Beowulf is ready to risk his life to save his people from a monster that has killed many people. He does this throughout this epic; fighting battles with different monsters that put his people’s lives in danger....   [tags: Beowulf Epics Christian Traditions Essays] 771 words
(2.2 pages)
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Beowulf Thesis - A rose may be just as sweet if it were called any other name, but a rose isn't fighting for recognition, is it. A rose is not a Viking living in a time where life and death are so closely intertwined. Juliet Montague, along with Shakespeare himself may have struggled with the idea of a name, but clearly Beowulf struggled with this idea in quite a different way. The epic poem of Beowulf is a story filled with majesty and mourning. Heroes and villains, struggles and victory. Men die, all the time....   [tags: Beowulf] 1568 words
(4.5 pages)
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Analysis of Beowulf - After a long journey, you find yourself in uncharted territory. As you scout the area, you notice a small village off in the distance. Upon approaching this settlement, you are greeted by some armed townsfolk. They attack you without warning, and take you to a large hall in the center of town. There, you see many men parading around in an intoxicated stupor, showing off their trophies and talking of their success in past battles and wars. They eat with bare hands, ripping at the food and drinking until they can no longer handle themselves, finding a home on the open floor....   [tags: Beowulf ] 1309 words
(3.7 pages)
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Epic of Beowulf - Themes of Beowulf - The Themes of Beowulf                George Clark in “The Hero and the Theme” comments on his insights into the theme of the Old English poem Beowulf:   The poem opens with an illustration and assertion that success is achieved only by praiseworthy deeds and closes commending the hero’s pursuit of fame. . . .The poem’s creation of Beowulf gives its theme ethical force. . . .The poem’s three great stories lead the audience from an assured vision of a benevolently ordered world to the existential world of its minor stories where only the heroic will can achieve a lasting value, the memory and fame of praiseworthy deeds (271)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf themebeo]
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1522 words
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Epic of Beowulf - The Conflicts of Beowulf - The Conflicts of Beowulf              George Clark in “The Hero and the Theme” make reference to an interior conflict within the Beowulf hero himself, and how the hero appears to lose this conflict:   Although a strong critical movement followed Klaeber in taking Beowulf as a Christian hero or even Christ figure, the most numerous and influential body of postwar critics, including Margaret Goldsmith (1960, 1962, 1970), read the poem as faulting the hero for moral filures according to one or another Christian standard of judgment (see also Bolton 1978)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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1893 words
(5.4 pages)
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Beowulf - The Gentle Warrior - Beowulf - The Gentle Warrior The epic Beowulf is one of the oldest poems written in English. According to the Norton Anthology, "the poem was composed more the twelve hundred years ago, in the first half of the eight century. Its author may have been a native of what was Mercia, the Midlands of England today, although the late tenth-century manuscript , which alone preserves the poem, originated in the south in the kingdom of the West Saxons" (Norton 21). Although the poem is of English origin, it speaks of tribes (the Danes and the Geats) that are from the "Danish island of Zealand and southern Sweden respectively" (Norton 22)....   [tags: Beowulf]
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449 words
(1.3 pages)
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Beowulf Characters - Beowulf Characters Schyld Scefing: He is the first great king of the Danes, and upon his death he is given a remarkable burial at sea. He eventually becomes the great-grandfather of Hrothgar who is king during Grendel's attacks upon the Danes. Beowulf: A thane of the Geat king Hygelac and eventually becomes King of the Geats. Hrothgar: King of the Danes at the time of Grendel's constant attacks. During is reign as king he builds the hall (Heorot) as a tribute to his people and his peaceful reign....   [tags: Beowulf Essays] 1287 words
(3.7 pages)
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Revenge of Beowulf - Revenge of Beowulf Beowulf is an epic poem that, above all, gives the reader an idea of a time long past; a time when the most important values were courage and integrity. The only factors that could bestow shower fame upon a person were heroic deeds and family lineage. Beowulf, as the paradigm of pagan heroes, exhibited his desire to amass fame and fortune; the only way to do so was to avenge the death of others. This theme of retribution that is ever present throughout the poem seems to color the identities of its characters....   [tags: Poetry Beowulf] 1194 words
(3.4 pages)
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Christian And Pagan Ideals In Beowulf - Before the invention of the printing press or written history, oral history, especially in early Germanic culture, became the foremost means of transcribing values, and past events. Written down in approximately 1,000 A.D. by an unknown author, Beowulf, originally a pagan fable, became a Christian allegory upon its transcription by Christian monks. However, as scholars have debated over the religious context in Beowulf, the attempts by the monks to turn the epic poem into a Christian parable ended merged, including both original and Christian aspects....   [tags: Beowulf] 1328 words
(3.8 pages)
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Beowulf Scene Essay - Beowulf Scene Essay In the passage we open up to where Hrothgar the protector of the Scyldings and King of the Danes finds out about the killing of Aeschere in the Heorot (the mead-hall). Aeschere is the elder brother of Yrmenlaf and is Hrothgar's right-hand man in giving him advice and also fighting alongside of Hrothgar during times of war. Hrothgar calls upon Beowulf (protagonist of the poem) who just the night before has finished killing Grendel (an evil monster). Hrothgar tells Beowulf of Grendel's mother's revenge for killing Grendel....   [tags: Beowulf] 394 words
(1.1 pages)
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Beowulf - His Last Words - Beowulf - His Last Words In the society in which the poem Beowulf takes place, war and kingship are normal factors in daily life. Beowulf's world is a very violent society with wars as a dominant part of daily life. Dragons and monsters are a constant threat to the Danes and the Geats. Warriors are a necessity to this war-like society. Beowulf is a hero and an example of a great warrior. He fights against monsters. In the section of the poem we are about to discuss, Beowulf is ready to fight a dragon with his thane Wiglaf....   [tags: Beowulf]
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802 words
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The Tale Element in Beowulf - The genre of Beowulf eludes classification, and yet this is its beauty. The multi-layered body of the work is made up of different building material: there are the “tale bricks;” present is the “epic element;” the chronicle planks haven’t been left out either. The very diversity in the story’s makeup gives it its unique appeal, and yet that very same diversity throws in big question marks in our way. The tale element brings in such a paradox: it both aids and harms the development of the plot....   [tags: Beowulf] 351 words
(1 pages)
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A Jungian Reading of Beowulf - A Jungian Reading of Beowulf     This essay will propose an alternative means by which to examine the distinctive fusion of historical, mythological, and poetic elements that make up the whole of Beowulf.  Jeffrey Helterman, in a 1968 essay, “Beowulf: The Archetype Enters History,” first recognized Grendel as a representation of the Shadow archetype and identified Grendel’s mother as an archetypal Anima image; I wish to extend the scope of the reading by suggesting that the dragon, too, represents an archetype: the archetype of the Self.  John Miles Foley, in his landmark 1977 essay “Beowulf and the Psychohistory of Anglo-Saxon Culture,” first suggested that the progression of battles between man and monster in Beowulf symbolically recalls the primal myth, the “monomyth,” which recounts both the process of individual psychological growth and the development of universal human consciousness.  I will explore in greater detail the idea that the progression of battles specifically represents the process of individual psychological development through which the ego confronts personal archetypes in order to achieve complete self-knowledge: the process of individuation....   [tags: Beowulf]
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1635 words
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Beowulf - Beowulf The classic hero is a well-known character of high social position whose qualities represent those valuable to his society. The hero is pitted against monsters and is, therefore, strong and courageous often to the point of seeming superman. Beowulf often displays cunning and craftiness in dealing with others. At the same time, since he represents all humans, he struggles to overcome human weaknesses. He is challenged and he triumphs. In Beowulf: A new telling by Robert Nye, Beowulf is a classic hero....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays] 783 words
(2.2 pages)
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - The Heroism of Beowulf - Heroism of Beowulf     Beowulf was written in the eighth century by an unknown author. The story is centered on Beowulf, the main character, who goes to Denmark to offer his assistance in fighting off, Grendel, the monster who has been haunting them. Beowulf most definitely proves to be a hero. His heroism is exemplified first when he kills Grendel, then when he kills Grendel’s mother, and finally when he kills the dragon, called Worm. This makes him a hero because he risks his own life to save the people of Denmark....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo] 404 words
(1.2 pages)
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Beowulf and Dracula - Beowulf and Dracula The cover of the November, 1975 comic book "Beowulf: Dragon Slayer" features a red-haired, horn-helmeted Beowulf swinging a large broadsword at a purple-caped villain also bearing two razor-sharp swords. As Beowulf rears up on his steed, a bikini clad woman, cloth slightly aside to reveal the shadow of a buttock is drawn falling, face filled with terror. In the background, a rising full moon and silhouetted gothic castle keenly set an atmosphere of dread and foreboding. Above the emboldened title of the comic book reads in smaller letters, "Beowulf: First and Greatest Hero of Them All!" Text in the bottom-left corner gives the juicy hook for this edition: "Beowulf Meets Dracula." Despite over eight hundred years of literary separation, English literature's earliest known epic hero gallantly faces off against its biggest villain.1 While the idea of Beowulf and Dracula facing off mano-a-mano is hardly surprising to today's postmodern readers, the combination of the disparate elements on the comic represents something larger than the story arc itself: the canonization of Anglo-Saxon literature into modern popular culture....   [tags: Beowulf Dracula Essays] 2581 words
(7.4 pages)
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Heroism in Beowulf - Heroism in Beowulf A hero is one who is not only strong, but one who uses his strength to uphold others. A hero is humble, philanthropic, magnanimous and selfless, a humanitarian at best. In the unprecedented epic Beowulf, the tale’s namesake exemplifies every characteristic befitting an Anglo-Saxon hero. He is honest, loyal, and courageous. He portrays these characteristics in the battle against Grendel, the affray with Grendel’s mother, and the fight against the dragon that inevitably ended his life....   [tags: Beowulf Papers Essays] 517 words
(1.5 pages)
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The Monsters in Beowulf - The Monsters in Beowulf      The poem Beowulf, believed to be written between 650 and 800 by a group of monks, contains several complex characters that have sparked discussions throughout the years. Scholars still continue to ponder over the unanswered questions about characters, such as whether Grendel is monster or human, whether Grendel is evil or not, and what the monsters in Beowulf signify. Other important, though less accepted questions include whether Beowulf is really a hero, or is in actuality a monster, and what allows the characters to be classified as either evil, or not evil....   [tags: Beowulf Poem Essays] 1833 words
(5.2 pages)
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Donaldson's Beowulf - Donaldson's Beowulf "Fate often saves an undoomed man when his courage is good" -Beowulf (Donaldson, 12) The passage that I analyzed spans the action when Beowulf returns to the halls of Heorot after a harsh battle with Grendel’s mother. He returns to king Hrothgar in the great hall of Heorot to say that he has successfully completed his boast and killed Grendel’s mother. Beowulf states that it has been a very difficult underwater battle and that he has barely escaped with his life, “The fight would have been ended straightway if God had not guarded me” (Donaldson, 29)....   [tags: Donaldson Beowulf Essays]
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Fate in Beowulf - Fate in Beowulf A Twist of Fate for the Great Hero Beowulf Fate seems to be an ongoing theme in the works of Boethius and Beowulf. Whether it is a belief of Christian providence or pagan fatalism, the writers of these works are strongly moved by the concept of fate and how it affects the twists and turns of a person’s life. Fate is most often seen as the course of events in a person’s life that leads them to inevitable death at some time or another. Throughout the poem Beowulf, the characters are haunted by fate and acknowledge its strong presence in everything that they do....   [tags: Beowulf Fate Essays] 1477 words
(4.2 pages)
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf as Hero - Beowulf - Hero In the epic story of Beowulf, the hero is Beowulf.   Beowulf shows physical strength in the story by defeating Grendel. In line 219 of Grendel’s mother, it tells how Beowulf killed her. “…cut it through, broke bones and all.” His strength is also told in line 213 of how he “lifted the sword that was so massive that no ordinary man could lift.” Beowulf’s determination, or his will to win, was throughout the story, even up until his death. A quote that describes this is, “…he cut the beast in half, slit it apart....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo] 470 words
(1.3 pages)
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The Style of Beowulf - The Style of Beowulf                   Ursula Schaefer in “Rhetoric and Style” gives an overview of the history of criticism of style:   Examination of the poem’s rhetoric and style started out with investigating common Germanic features. On the other end of the scale, attention was given to a possible Latin influence on the poem’s style. Recently, there have been reconsiderations of authochthonous traditions linked mainly with the analysis of larger narrative patterns (105).   Beowulf ‘s stylistic features will be examined in this essay, along with the perspectives of various literary critics....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - Beowulf and Christianity - Beowulf and Christianity It was a dark time and the devastating effects of war had taken their toll. Many had given up hope entirely that things would ever get better, that the land of present day England would cease its bloodshed. From the conquests of the Romans, to the Germanic tribes, to the Vikings, the people of the British Isles had been battered. They needed a hero, someone who represented strength, decency, and bravery. So came the story of Beowulf. Beowulf is a fictional hero of this time....   [tags: Epic Beowulf christbeo] 1129 words
(3.2 pages)
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - The Conflicts in Beowulf - The Conflicts in Beowulf              Brian Wilkie and James Hurt in Literature of the Western World discuss what is perhaps the overriding or central conflict in the poem Beowulf, namely the struggle between good and evil, and how the monsters are representative of the evil side: Ker was answered in 1936 by the critic and novelist J.R.R. Tolkien, author of Lord of the Rings, who argued that “the monsters are not an inexplicable blunder of taste; they are essential, fundamentally allied to the underlying ideas of the poem, which give it its lofty tone and high seriousness.” For Tolkien, the monsters were symbolic of eternal forces of evil while remaining real monsters (1273)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Alliteration in Beowulf - Alliteration in Beowulf                     The diction of the Old English poem Beowulf is distinguished primarily by its heavy use of  allliteration, or the repetition of the initial sounds of words.   In the original manuscript version of the poem, alliteration is employed in almost every line (or two half-lines); in modern translations of the poem this is not so. Beowulf uses alliteration [my italics] and accent to achieve the poetic effect which Modern English poetry achieves through the use of poetic feet, each having the same number of syllables and the same pattern of accent (Wilkie 1271)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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1310 words
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Grendel in Beowulf - In both works, Beowulf and Grendel, Grendel himself is generally given the same connotations. He is given kennings, called names, referred to as the evil spawn of Cain, and even viewed as a monster; but why. Why in both books is he a wicked, horrible, person who is harshly excluded from everyone. After stumbling upon John Gardner's book, it was halfway expected that some excuse would be made for Grendel; that he wasn't really the inexorable monster the thanes in Beowulf portrayed him as. But all it really did was make him worse....   [tags: Beowulf Epic Poem] 740 words
(2.1 pages)
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Prosody of Beowulf - Prosody of Beowulf          The prosody of Beowulf is the art of Old English versification, made to be chanted orally, not read silently. Therefore it uses alliteration and accent to achieve the poetic effect which Modern English poetry achieves through the use of poetic feet, each having the same number of syllables and the same pattern of accent (Wilkie 1271). Theory on the prosody of Beowulf is evolving.   In the manuscript version of the poem, alliteration is employed in almost every line (or two half-lines); in most modern translations of the poem this is not so....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Beowulf: Christian Vs Pagan Influence - The European epic, Beowulf, was written sometime in the eighth century in England. This time period provides us with an idea for the mixture of Christian and pagan elements because of an English society that was in the process of converting from Paganism to Christianity. Examples of Pagan and Christian traditions are presented all throughout literature. Many of the influences deal with what it going on in the world, when the piece is written. When Beowulf was written, St. Augustine had just come over to try and convert the Anglo-Saxon people to Christianity; although the conversion succeeded it was a shallow conversion, and there were still people following the Pagan ways....   [tags: Beowulf ] 1638 words
(4.7 pages)
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Pagan Burial Rites in the Epic of Beowulf - Pagan Burial Rites in the Epic of Beowulf Scores of essays are written about the Christian influence on the Beowulf poet. Most notable Beowulf scholars such as Kl‘ber, Robinson and Whitelock do not fail to address the matter. Given the complexity of the issue and the proliferation of evidence within the poem, we can understand the universal appeal of this topic. The poet transposes his Christian convictions onto a story which formed in a culture devoid of Christianity. In many instances, however, the poem's pagan basis shines through....   [tags: Beowulf]
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Beowulf - There was a huge influence of both paganism and christianity that can be noticed in Old English Poetry. To better understand these two values, let us explain what paganism and christianity mean. Christianity is a monotheistic religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. As presented in New Thestament, Christians believe Jesus to be the Son of God and the Messiah prophesied in The Old Testament. Christianity began in the 1st century AD as a Jewish sect, and shares many religious texts with Judaism, specifically the Hebrew Bible, known to Christians as the Old Testament....   [tags: Beowulf Paganism Poem] 1716 words
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The First Monster at Heorot in Beowulf - The First Monster at Heorot in Beowulf When Grendel monstrously bursts into Heorot, tears down the heavy door with his beastly hands and instantly devours a Geatish warrior, it immediately tells us that the first climax of the epic Beowulf has arrived. As Beowulf carefully watches Grendel take action, Grendel reaches out to snatch Beowulf as his next meal. Surprised, Grendel becomes extremely frightened to discover that there is another being stronger than himself when Beowulf, using his vice-like grip, pulls Grendel’s arm from his socket....   [tags: Beowulf Essays] 1062 words
(3 pages)
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Beowulf: The Ultimate Hero - Beowulf: The Ultimate Hero A hero is one who places himself or herself at risk for another by performing great deeds of courage. Often in our society today, athletes are looked up to as heroes.Brett Favre is an excellent example of a modern day hero. He is looked up to by many for his strength, leadership, and success. While on the football field, he is willing to risk his "life" by running the ball in when there is no one else to go to. Favre also gives all of the glory to God. Whenever he has conquered another team, or made the winning play, all praise is given to God....   [tags: Beowulf Hero] 1741 words
(5 pages)
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Beowulf is an Epic Hero - A true hero does not fear death or, but instead risks all that he is for what he believes to be right, moral, and just. Beowulf is an epic and tells the story of a legendary hero, conquering all obstacles as if he was immortal. Up until the end of Beowulf’s life he was constantly looking to be the hero. However, his humanity is exposed by his death. Heroes all share the characteristic of their willingness to die in their effort to accomplish their heroic act, thus making the act in itself heroic....   [tags: The Epic of Beowulf] 951 words
(2.7 pages)
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The Importance of Grendel and the Dragon in Beowulf - The Importance of Grendel and the Dragon in Beowulf “In my youth I engaged in many wars”, Beowulf boasts to his warriors, which is certainly true. Throughout his life, he faces many deadly foes, all of which he handily defeats, save one. His story focuses on the most challenging, as well as morally significant of foes, Grendel and the dragon. These creatures reveal much about society as well as Christian virtue at the time. Even after Grendel and the dragon are defeated physically, the two monsters pose a new threat to the hero on a higher plane....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf] 1277 words
(3.6 pages)
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Fate, Destiny, and Predestination in Beowulf - Fate, Destiny, and Predestination in Beowulf An epic story is one that combines elements of supernatural powers and heroic deeds with plebeian troubles. In Beowulf , the unknown author paints a typical yet magnificent tale that is one of the great epic chronicles of the Middle Ages. Like the poems of Homer, Beowulf possesses terrible monsters, men with supernatural powers, the search for glory, and deadly defeats. However, this medieval account brings a new element into the folds: the association between established religious forces and personal choices....   [tags: Epic Beowulf]
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2128 words
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Vengeance in the Epic of Beowulf - Vengeance in the Epic of Beowulf Beowulf is the epic story of a young hero who battles the monster Grendel and his mother. Beowulf, a prince of the Geats, the son of Ecgtheow who voyages to Heorot, the hall of Hrothgar, king of the Danes and the great grandson of the hero Scyld Scefing. There at Heorot, Beowulf destroys the monster Grendel, who for twelve years has haunted the hall by night and slain all he found therein. When Grendel's mother, in revenge, makes an attack on the hall, Beowulf seeks her out and kills her in her home beneath the waters....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf]
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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - Beowulf and Heroic Virtues - Beowulf and Heroic Virtues      Although the main character in Beowulf is Beowulf himself, I believe that the single section which most concisely illustrates the heroic values in this poem occurs on pages 61 through 64 of the text, and is illustrated not by Beowulf's actions, but by Wiglaf's. Although Wiglaf is by nationality Swedish, he identifies himself as Beowulf's kinsman when he says "I did begin to help my kinsman." (Chickering 64)   Wiglaf, in coming to Beowulf's aid in the fight against the dragon, typifies several important heroic virtues....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf as the Ideal Anglo-Saxon - Beowulf as the Ideal Anglo-Saxon Beowulf is a hero who embodies the ideal characteristics in the Anglo-Saxon culture; these characteristics all come together to make up an epic tale. He possesses the virtues, traits and beliefs that were respected in the Anglo-Saxon culture. Beowulf displays these virtues in his own actions and words during different circumstances throughout the tale. Beowulf was "the strongest of the Geats" and also "greater and stronger than anyone anywhere in this world"....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays] 560 words
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Bravery in Beowulf - Bravery in Beowulf Bravery is like a very trusted friend, it will never let you down. That statement holds true in the great epic of "Beowulf." "Beowulf" is the story of a great hero who comes to the aid of a troubled king. Beowulf hears that king Hrothgar is having trouble and immediately comes to help with no questions asked. he defeats the monster, Grendel, with his bare hands. Beowulf then defeats Grendel's mother along with a dragon until he is fatally injured. Bravery is a very admirable characteristic that few people possess....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays] 499 words
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf as Heroic Archetype - Beowulf as Heroic Archetype Monsters, their mothers, and dragons. The epic poem Beowulf, author unknown, includes all these mystical creatures and an impervious protagonist after which the poem is named. As the main character in the poem, Beowulf exemplifies the heroic archetype physically, spiritually, and ethically. Beowulf is superior to the average person in many areas, among them physical strength. Throughout the poem, Beowulf accomplishes feats that no other man would be able to survive and proves his boundless might....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf as Epic Hero - Beowulf as Epic Hero Epic heroes usually exemplify the character traits most admired in their societies, and Beowulf is no exception.  "Beowulf" is set in the Anglo-Saxon society, a time when war was rampant among the many peoples trying to take over the different kingdoms of England.  In this dangerous, violent time people lived in constant peril and jeopardy.  These conditions only allowed people of great bravery to survive and men of outstanding courage were admired the populous.  These warriors fought for their leader and tribe in return for treasure and protection.  This relationship between the lord and his men was the basis of the Anglo-Saxon society.  The epic poem "Beowulf" is a perfect example of how this system worked in these trying times....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo] 855 words
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Origin and Evolution of Beowulf - The Origin and Evolution of Beowulf       The origin of Beowulf remains a mystery, as both the poet and the year of composition has eluded scholars for centuries.  Although "[it] is now widely believed that Beowulf is the work of a single poet who was Christian . . ." (preface, Heaney 29), I see Beowulf as a mosaic of many poets.  In this paper, I will argue that with each new translation of this Old English epic, a new author of Beowulf is born.  The twenty-first century poet Seamus Heaney, who translated the Beowulf on which this paper is based, injects aspects of his world into this ancient poem.  Published in the year 2 000, the inconsistency of this most modern text reveals the messy masterpiece Beowulf is today.  I believe that throughout the ages, Beowulf has been altered by each generation it touches.  I will provide evidence that the Anglo-Saxon orators, the Christian monk recorders, and the modern-day translators have all contributed to both the conservation and change of Beowulf....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Sources for Beowulf - Sources for Beowulf        Many of the characters and episodes and material artifacts mentioned poetically in Beowulf are likewise presented to us from archaeological sources, from literary sources, and from English and Scandinavian records.   “I suggested in an earlier paper that the Beowulf poet’s incentive for composing an epic about sixth-century Scyldings may have had something to do with the fact that, by the 890’s at least, Heremod, Scyld, Healfdene, and the rest, were taken to be the common ancestors both of the Anglo-Saxon royal family and of the ninth-century Danish immigrants, the Scaldingi” (Frank 60)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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The Role of Women in Beowulf - The Role of Women in Beowulf Men exemplify heroic qualities in both Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, however, women are depicted differently in the two stories. In Beowulf, women are not necessary to the epic, where as in Green Knight, women not only play a vital role in the plot, but they also directly control the situations that arise. Men are acknowledged for their heroic achievement in both stories, while the women's importance in each story differ. However, women are being equally degraded in both Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight....   [tags: The Epic of Beowulf ] 1257 words
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - The Pessimism of Beowulf - The Pessimism of Beowulf       Anticipation of catastrophe, doom, gloom are present in Beowulf rom beginning to end, even in the better half of the poem, Part I. Perhaps this is part of what makes it an elegy – the repeated injection of sorrow and lamentation into every episode.   In his essay, “The Pessimism of Many Germanic Stories,” A. Kent Hieatt says of the poem Beowulf:   The ethical life of the poem, then, depends upon the propositions that evil. . . that is part of this life is too much for the preeminent man....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Social Codes in Beowulf - Social Codes in Beowulf                                                               In reading Beowulf, one cannot help noticing the abundance of references to weapons and armor throughout the text. Many passages involving weapons and armor contain important messages that the author is trying to convey. These passages involve the choice to use or refrain from using arms, the practice of disarming oneself upon entering another's home, and the idea of a man's worth being measured by his weapons....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - Is Beowulf History or Myth? - Is Beowulf History or Myth?                   Many of the characters and episodes and material artifacts mentioned poetically in Beowulf are likewise presented to us from archaeological sources and from various written sources, especially Scandinavian records, thus adding credibility to the historicity of the poem. But it is obvious that Beowulf, Grendel and the Dragon clearly belong to the classification of “myth.”   In his essay “The Digressions in Beowulf” David Wright says:   Another effect of what are called the ‘historical elements’ in Beowulf – the subsidiary stories of the Danes and the Geats – is to give the poem greater depth and verisimilitude....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - A Jungian Reading of Beowulf - A Jungian Reading of Beowulf          The epic poem, Beowulf, depicts the battles and victories of the Anglo-Saxon warrior Beowulf, over man-eating monsters. The noble defender, Beowulf, constantly fought monsters and beasts to rid the land of evil. The most significant of these monsters, Grendel, represents Beowulf's shadow, the Jungian archetype explored in the essay collection, Meeting the Shadow.   The character Grendel portrays the fallen self, which will assert itself violently if neglected, and must be overcome throughout life....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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themebeo Epic of Beowulf Essay - Theme and Style of Beowulf - The Theme and Style of Beowulf                   Interpretations of Beowulf’s theme vary much more than commentary on the poet’s style. In this essay I hope to state clearly some of the popularly mentioned themes running through the poem, and to carefully delineate many aspects of the author’s style.   “Many critics feel that the speech of Hrothgar between lines 1700 and 1784 encapsulates the moral of the poem….’He does not know the worse – till inside him great arrogance grows and spreads’” (Shippey 38)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - The Balance of Joy and Sorrow in Beowulf - The Balance of Joy and Sorrow in Beowulf          The poet Richard Wilbur expresses in his poem Beowulf one of many sorrows expressed by the original Beowulf poem: “Such gifts as are the hero’s hard reward … These things he stowed beneath his parting sail, And wept that he could share them with no son” (Wilbur 67).   The hero’s lament of not having an heir is but one of many dozens of sorrows in this poetic classic, which balance with numerous joys expressed on alternate pages. This essay expresses but a selection of joys and sorrows from among the almost countless number existing in the poem....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Shields in the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Shields in the poem Beowulf       Shields, a defensive weapon mentioned in the poem Beowulf, include a variety of compositions from wood to iron; and this is wholly in accord with archaeological finds. There are a considerable number of references to shields in the poem, making this topic a very relevant one to consider.   “Weapons could be heirlooms, and royal treasuries and armories still preserve arms and weapons from earlier days, so imagination in this area need not be confined to contemporary artifacts (304),” says Catherine M....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf and the Hero Myth - Beowulf and the Hero Myth Beowulf contains a myriad of different heroic ethical and social values. Most of these values are ingeniously rooted within, or made evident by the opposing forces of the poem. The initial opposing force arrives in the form of Grendel, a vile creature who's rampages mirror that of a modern serial killer. As the poem draws toward the conclusion, it focuses on the dragon, a creature developed by the poet to solidify the rise and fall of the archetypal hero....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo] 866 words
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf as Anglo-Saxon Hero - Beowulf - An Anglo-Saxon Hero A hero is a person of distinguished courage who has outstanding qualities and abilities, who is admired for these having these aspects of their character and also admired for brave and noble acts. An Anglo-Saxon hero is a person who has good leadership qualities, is able and willing to provide people with a sense of security, and is willing to go into danger despite possible harm to themselves. These Anglo-Saxon heroes usually were kings or thanes because they distinguished themselves above others by doing a good for the greater of everyone....   [tags: Epic Beowulf herobeo] 555 words
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Poetic Devices in Beowulf - Poetic Devices in Beowulf       There are a small variety of poetic devices employed in the composition of the poem Beowulf, and they are repeated numerous times.   The Old English poetry of Beowulf is distinguished primarily by its heavy use of  allliteration, or the repetition of the initial sounds of words. In the original manuscript version of the poem, alliteration is employed in almost every line (or two half-lines); in modern translations of the poem this is not so. In lines 4 and 5 of the poem we find:   Oft Scyld Scefing                               sceapena preatum monegum maegpum                           meodo-setla ofteah   The repetition of the “s” sound in line 4 and of the “m” sound in line 5 illustrate alliteration, and this occurs throughout the poem, providing to the listener what the rhyme of modern-day poetry provides – an aesthetic sense of  rightness or pleasure....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - The World of Beowulf - The World of Beowulf      The poem Beowulf depicts a world inhabited by semi-civilized societies that are very loyal to members of their group, that are transitory, that have little security, that are made prey of, by even single monsters of huge strength (Thompson 16).   In the poem the families or tribes that have banded together have formed their small societies. Ralph Arnold in  his essay “Royal Halls – The Sutton Hoo Ship Burial,” says: “Lust for gold as a symbol of royal wealth and for gold to give away probably accounted for much of the warfare in which the early English kings indulged” (91)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Dating and Locating the Composition of Beowulf - Dating and Locating the Composition of Beowulf       Dating and locating the composition of Beowulf is impossible to do with precision at this time because we do not have enough information about the poem’s specific historical context and because the poem is not constructed in such a consistently symbolic way to warrant a single allegorical-historical interpretation..   Estimates of the date of the poem’s composition “range from 340 to 1025, with ca. 515-530 and 1000 being almost universally acknowledged as the possible extremes” (Bjork 13)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - The Perfect Ruler in Beowulf - The Perfect King/Leader/Ruler in Beowulf        The classic poem Beowulf presents the concept of the perfect king/leader/ruler. This is presented in two modes: the ideal Germanic king and the ideal Christian king.   Literary scholar Levin L. Schucking in “Ideal of Kingship” states: “I have already tried to prove that the author of Beowulf designed it as a kind of Furstenspiegel (“mirror of a prince”) – perhaps for the young son of a prince, a thought with which Heusler later agreed” (36). So the author of Beowulf had in mind a human ideal of the perfect leader/ruler which he was trying to convey to the young man who was in search of the proper way, the ideal way that a ruler, a king, should govern his kingdom....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - The Author/Poet of Beowulf - The Author/Poet of Beowulf         Little is known about the poet who wrote Beowulf; we have only what information we can deduce from logically reasoning from whatever evidence scholars find in the poem itself.   First of all, consistency of style suggests that the poem was written by one person only (Thompson 14). There is no appreciable variation from uniform linguistic and metrical characteristics. Antithesis is a strong feature of the style:“This tendency to antithesis, frequently verging on paradox, and the constant play of irony are but stylistic manifestations of those movements of the poet’s thought which shape the very stuff of the poem” (Blomfield 58)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Mythical, Marvelous and Fantastic in Beowulf - The Mythical, Marvelous and Fantastic in Beowulf                    Is the world of Beowulf a never-never land created by the poet. Did the poet and his original audience feel that the characters in the poem were in essence like themselves, or did they see them as ficitional creatures in an imaginary society.   In Beowulf the hero is in deadly combat with Grendel’s mother in the mere. He is at the point of being killed by the monster when suddenly God shows to him the presence of a special sword nearby on the wall:   Then he saw among the armor   a victory-bright blade made by the giants,                               an uncracking edge, an honor for its bearer,              the best of weapons, but longer and heavier                           than any other man could have ever carried             in the play of war-strokes, ornamented, burnished,             the work of giants (1557ff.)   Beowulf seizes the great weapon, made by the giants prior to the great Flood – a fantastic appeal to our imaginations - and kills the monster....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Death in Beowulf, Henry IV, and Paradise Lost - Death in Beowulf, Henry IV, and Paradise Lost Characters in Death view their lives in retrospect and, very often, for these characters hindsight is twenty twenty. This statement holds true for any incidence of retrospect, however. When an event has passed you take yourself out of that situation emotionally and therefore lose the emotion-controlling factor which can cloud one's perspective. Assuming an after-life does exist, one may argue that the perspective you get on your life is clear because you are no longer concerned with your human emotions....   [tags: Beowulf] 652 words
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - The Structure of Beowulf - The Structure of Beowulf          There are several structures which scholars find in the poem Beowulf. It is the purpose of this essay to briefly elaborate on these structures.   The first theory regarding the structure of Beowulf is put forth by J.R.R. Tolkien in “Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics.” Tolkien states:    The poem “lacks steady advance”: so Klaeber heads a critical section in his edition. But the poem was not meant to advance, steadily or unsteadily. It is essentially a balance, an opposition of ends and beginnings....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - The Style of Beowulf - The Style of Beowulf           A consideration of the stylistic features in the classic poem Beowulf involves a study of the poetic verse, the vocabulary, alliteration, litotes, simile, kennings, variation and double-meaning or ambiguity.   The poetic conventions used by this poet include two half-lines in each verse, separated by a caesura or pause. The half-lines are joined by the oral stressing of alliterative words in the half-lines, both consonants and vowels (Tharaud 34). “At least one of the two stressed words in the first half-line, and usually both of them, begin with the same sound as the first stressed word of the second half-line” (Donaldson 67)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Armor in the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Armor in the poem Beowulf       Armor mentioned in the poem Beowulf include helmets and chain mail. There are an incredible number of references to these battle-apparel in the poem, making this topic of armor a very relevant one to consider.   “Helmets are the most dramatic and often quoted item of armor found in Beowulf,” says Catherine M. Hills in “Beowulf and Archaeology.” Indeed, examining the poem, one finds copious references to helmets in just the first 400 lines of the poem:                                                   Boar-figures gleamed over plated cheek-guards,         inlaid with gold; shining, fire-hardened,   fierce war-masks guarded their lives (303-6) iron-gray corselets,                   and grim mask-helmets (334) the Geatish leader                     spoke in his turn, strong in his helmet (341-2) Now you may enter,                 in your battle-armor, wearing war-masks (395-6)                                                 Brave in his helmet [he advanced] till he stood        before the king (403-4)   “Beowulf’s own helmet was ‘inlaid with gold, hooped with lodly bands, and decorated with effigies of boars’” (Arnold 91)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - Vengeance and Revenge in Beowulf - Vengeance and Revenge in Beowulf   The oldest of the great lengthy poems written in English and perhaps the lone survivor of a genre of Anglo-Saxon epics, Beowulf, was written by an unknown Christian author at a date that is only estimated.  Even so, it is a remarkable narrative story in which the poet reinvigorates the heroic language, style, and values of Germanic oral poetry.  He intertwines a number of themes including good and evil, youth and old age, paganism and Christianity and the heroic ideal code, into his principal narrative and numerous digressions and episodes; all of which were extremely important to his audience at the time.  Vengeance, part of the heroic code, was regarded differently by the two distinct religions.  Christianity teaches to forgive those who trespass against us, whereas in the pagan world, revenge is typical and not considered an evil act.  In Beowulf, the ancient German proverb "revenge does not long remain unrevenged" is strictly adhered to and verifies that revenge is part of pagan tradition....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - The Value System in Beowulf - The Value System Revealed in Beowulf Beowulf is a deeply serious commentary on human life with the main characters embodying a pronounced and coherent set of values. They are also the representatives of the outlined code for conduct and behaviour of those times. Honour, generosity and trust may seem to be the key words in the code. The protagonists reiterate in actions and words a belief in the importance of generosity of spirit and self awareness that make man a responsible member of the society....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays] 508 words
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Free Beowulf Essays: Beowulf and Snoop Doggy Dog - Beowulf and Snoop Doggy Dog We often think of the "Old English" time as an era filled with mighty pagan warriors gathered in a dark wooden room, drinking ale to celebrate their victory in a brutish bloody battle. Or maybe we picture brawny Vikings with dirty faces wearing animal skins while sailing in large wooden ships. You may even imagine the crude but lovable Hagar the Horrible from the popular comic strip. Regardless to which of these views you take, we always think of the "Old English" as a time far in the past....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays] 804 words
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Epic of Beowulf - Contradictory Christian Elements in Beowulf - Contradictory Christian Elements in Beowulf        In Beowulf the Christian element, which coexists alongside the pagan or heathen, sometimes in a seemingly contradictory fashion, is many faceted.   Certainly the Christian element seems to be too deeply interwoven in the text for us to suppose that it is due to additions made by scribes at a time when the poem had come to be written down. The Christian element had to be included by the original poet or by minstrels who recited it in later times....   [tags: Epic Beowulf christbeo]
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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Beowulf and the Power of Speech - Beowulf and the Power of Speech “Anyone with gumption/ and a sharp mind will take the measure/ of two things,” states one of the Danish warriors in Beowulf: “what’s said and what’s done” (287-289). Beowulf is, above all, a poem about language, about storytelling: the stories told of the great ones, and the stories the great ones hope will be told about themselves. It is a poem about the importance of boasting and vows, the power of the word made flesh, and the crucial link between worda ond worca, “what’s said and what’s done.” The bulk of the poem's content does not concentrate on what is happening in the present action of the tale, but on the telling what has happened and what will happen....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays] 4013 words
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf and Poor Catechesis - Beowulf and Poor Catechesis           Beowulf is a good example of bad catechesis in the Scriptures and in church doctrine and practice. Christianity is presented by  scops/minstrels/poets who had general notions about Christianity but were lacking in the detailed knowledge.   In Beowulf the Christian elements are about equally distributed between narrative and speeches. While the poet’s reflections and characters’ statements are mostly Christian, the customs and ceremonies, on the other hand, are almost entirely heathen/pagan: At the beginning of the poem, there is the account of the pagan funeral rites of Scyld Scefing, and at the close of the poem we see the heathen rites of burial for Beowulf himself, including cremation, deposition of treasures and armor, etc....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Beowulf and Its Formulas - Beowulf  and Its Formulas   The making of Beowulf involved the choosing of formulas mostly, from a common body of narrative, rather than individual words, and largely on the basis of alliterative needs.   In his esay, “The Pessimism of Many Germanic Stories,” A. Kent Hieatt says:   The Germanic peoples seem to have inherited a common body of narrative, which is a key to understanding the often incomplete and puzzling allusions and interpolated stories forming a large part of Beowulf” (45)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]
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