First and foremost, Beowulf is a man of all men who wears his heart on his sleeve for fellow countrymen. He is the epitome of the perfect hero, embodying the manners and values of the Germanic heroic code. His word is truly as good as his sword. The poem explores his heroics in upholding and defending his Geats and the Danes. Beowulf’s resumé speaks for itself, his character is predominantly composed of pride, courage and loyalty, which is a direct reflectio...
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...t has a tendency to hide behind Wealtheow’s skirt. As he gets older, he wants to direct the plan of action but doesn’t want to get his hands dirty in the execution, which is why he beckons the youthful Beowulf to take care of business on the front lines of the battlefield. Grendel is misunderstood to be a ravenous, man-eating beast, when in reality he is a troubled misfit with mixed emotions of pain and sorrow. All of that being said, I think it is imperative to keep in mind that one’s hero is another’s villain and vice-versa under the right circumstances. In closing remarks, as an undergraduate scholar of the Beowulf text and additional translations, I believe there is no single manuscript or alternate version of the poem that is truly complete. As a reader of such works, one must acknowledge a variety of interpretations in order to form a more well-rounded opinion.
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