Beowulf : An Epic Hero Essay

Beowulf : An Epic Hero Essay

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Beowulf is a poem of the Anglo-Saxon world approximately a thousand years ago. It was a unique piece of literature at the time it was written and helps us today understand the life of the Anglo-Saxon people during this time. It successfully combined pagan and christian ideas into a story that would help teach the youth of the time good qualities of a leader and a man. The story of Beowulf is one of glorious battles, bold adventures, and of course Epic Heros.

What defines an epic hero is that: they are the main, central character, larger than life figure, they come from noble or semi divine birth, they go against opposing forces, and they show courage, skill, and virtue. Not all of these things have to be found in a character to make them an epic hero, but most should be present for one to declare a hero and epic hero. An analysis of the story of Beowulf shows the character Beowulf shows all of the characteristics of being an epic hero. Beowulf is a strong, brave leader. Beowulf travels to far lands and battles dangerous and terrifying monsters which harass and kill subjects of the great King Hrothgar, king of the Danes.

When reading Beowulf one can see the main character in the story is the character of Beowulf. This is relevant as one of the characteristics of an epic hero is they are the main central character. A big clue which gives away Beowulf is the main character is right in the title, Beowulf, the story is named after him. The story Beowulf follows Beowulf on his adventures, from defeating the mighty Grendel and his mother when Beowulf was a young man all the way to the Death of Beowulf, this and the fact the story does not follow any other character throughout the story helps to come to the conclu...


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...e end, Beowulf has a problem with a dragon, a problem that a young Beowulf could have fixed with little resistance, but in his old age Beowulf had lost some of his strength and none of his pride. Beowulf ended up fighting the dragon, and even though he killed it, it also killed him. Beowulf ended up losing that battle in his old age not just to the dragon, but also to time and the fact that time will kill the greatest, most epic of all heroes.

Beowulf is considered to be an epic hero. Beowulf fell into every one of the categories which defines a epic hero. He was the main, central character, larger than life figure, he came from noble or semi divine birth, he went against opposing forces, and he showed courage, skill, and virtue. He showed these characteristics through battles with monsters, by traveling overseas, and protecting innocent people.






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