The Saga of the Volsungs, translated by Jesse L. Byock. New York: Penguin Books, 1990. Ward & Trent, et al. The Cambridge History of English and American Literature. New York: G.P.
The Anglo-Saxons were highly fatalistic, feeling that Wyrd, or fate, inescapably guided their lives. To try to skirt fate as Beowulf’s thanes did by fleeing the dragon was considered the ultimate form of cowardice and led to a lifetime of shame. Beowulf shows on multiple occasions that fully surrenders to fate, even if it will lead to his death. In his first boast before fighting Grendel, he insists that he not be mourned if he fails, saying that “Fate goes ever as fate must” (455). Although he is confident that he will win the battle, he understands that it is ultimately out of his control, and that does not scare him.
Hrothgar’s accomplishments in battle; Beowulf exploits in conquering the surrounding lands and bravery when facing the two grotesque monsters; also, Wiglaf’s bravery in his fight against the dragon, earned them the title of hero in the tale. The mantle is not passed through blood or between clans, but through acts of strength, eternal glory and bravery. Beowulf and Wiglaf were both young and inexperienced warriors fighting selflessly to save another; conquering the beasts thus beginning their journey to become heroes. Hrothgar the great warrior, Beowulf the old guardian and Wiglaf the brave each gave their lives to the hero’s mantle, to protect what they loved.
Beowulf tells the prince, “And if your enemy should end my life then be, o generous prince, forever the father and protector of all whom I leave behind me” (ln. 452). Beowulf knows that he has an impossible task ahead of him but yet again he is risking his life to save others. In this battle against Grendel’s mother, Beowulf must hold his breath an extremely unrealistic amount of time, while fighting a battle with weapons that were useless against the monster. This superhuman powers are only small examples that stress the epic hero qualities Beowulf possesses.
Many warriors tried to defeat Grendel, but they all failed and eaten my Grendel. When Grendel came to the Heorot to kill the warrior’s, Beowulf tricked and attacked him with his bare hands, knowing that the swords does not work on him (Beowulf 51). First Beowulf learned Grendel’s attacking style and with that he counter attacked Grendel. Beowulf uses his wisdom wisely in every situation he encounters. When Beowulf fights Grendel's mother, first he looked around his surrounding and “he sights a famous old sword of the giants, which he seizes and thrusts at Grendel’s mother, who falls in helpless death throes” (Foster 1).
Heroes always die a glorious death. Beowulf felt that in order for him to be remembered for the rest of time he needed to not only defeat Grendel and Grendel’s mother alone, but also defeat a Dragon flying into a certain death, solo. Beowulf was out to prove himself a strong, witty, brave warrior and he did indeed succeed. Additionally, he succeeded in feeding to his insecurities by boasting about his epic deeds. Beowulf will be known in the land of the Danes and the Geats as an epic hero for all time, even though Beowulf came to their rescue and aid for purely selfish reasons.
Beowulf jumped in the water to fight Grendell's mourning mother, he did not know where he was going yet, he went for glory and fame showing no fear. Beowulf displayed that he was very resourceful, as well as, the other traits listed. He shows how intelligent he can be when he was fighting Grendells mother and he became weary and became stumbling. In the midst of a battle, Beowulf almost dies if it were not for his woven mail shirt he wore on his chest. "Then he saw, hanging on the wall, a heavy sword, hammered by giants, strong and blessed with their magic, the best of all weapons", "lifted it high over his head and struck with all the strength he had left, caught her in the neck and cut it through, broke bones and all.
He must protect his people. But Beowulf seems so caught up in the surreal threats such as, monsters and dragons, he fails to realize the real peril he has left his people in. Beowulf is aware of his age and uneasy feeling toward his success yet he chooses to take on the dragon anyways. Although the dragon is defeated the Geat people are presented with even greater danger of the Sweds who will surely pounce on their nation. Therefore, throughout the story Beowulf is presented as the ultimate hero; demonstrating the strength of thirty men in his grasp while also using his powerful insight to avoid unnecessary conflict.
It starts off when his wife Titania refuses to give him a small child she had found. Oberon want’s the child as a knight, and seeks revenge on his wife. “Oberon is angry and determined to take the child, and teach his wayward wife a lesson.” (Heath, Sue). He sends a Puck Fairy, or Robin Goodfellow, after a flower to create a love potion. Oberon succeeds b... ... middle of paper ... ...r so he killed him and then took his throne and wife.