Beowulf is a Germanic poem that described the journey of the great warrior Beowulf. Throughout the poem, Beowulf performs epic feats from defeating the monster Grendel, and then his mother, to facing a fire breathing dragon. Beowulf had characteristics that made him a great warrior, and later a great king. Beowulf’s character was an example of what the Germanic people expected from their warriors and kings. Beowulf was the ideal example of what a great king should be according to the Germanic people.
They believed in fate and believed the only way to live forever was if you had fame. In the Anglo-Saxon book, Beowulf, there was a combination of many different people. The characters in Beowulf are defined by their status. Their status was in form of their fame and accomplishments. Beowulf was a very famous warrior, who sails to the Danes to kill a monster who is murdering their people.
Anglo Saxon’s history is well known for their loyalty, courage and bravery. Beowulf our protagonist is symbolized as a hero, who represents the Anglo Saxons at the time. Beowulf earns his fame and respect through battling creatures nobody else would want to face. These creatures symbolize the evil that lurks beyond the dark. Beowulf’s intense battle with these creatures’ symbolizes the epic battle of good versus evil.
The first few lines of Beowulf immediately use the act of courage as the definitive form of greatness. The Danes will be celebrated because of their bravery and heroism before anything else. When Grendel attacks the Danes, their land is described as desolate, after being pillaged; “So Grendel ruled in defiance of right, one against all, until the greatest house in the wo... ... middle of paper ... ...Beowulf will forever be remembered. Beowulf, who initially is a prideful, young hero, matures into a respected king who shows respect and loyalty to his people. Before Beowulf reigns as king, there are important characteristics that he exemplifies that lead one to believe his true nobility and future as a renowned King of the Geats.
“With God's assistance this foreign prince has performed a task that we, with our deep wisdom and cunning, attempted in vain.” (Chapter 14). Again, Beowulf illustrated an ideal hero, because god had been alongside with Beowulf throughout the poem. Aside from faith, Beowulf also allowed fate to take over the results of his battles. As Beowulf was prepared for his battle against the dragon, he explained “…let fate decide our doom as it will, our destiny---fate, and almighty God.” (Chapter 35). Since fate had resulted to permit Beowulf to wins in every battle he encountered, Beowulf was destined to become a hero.
Beowulf states, “My people have said, the wisest, most knowing and best of them, that my duty was to go to the Danes’ Great king.” He Beowulf states that his people believe it to be his duty to defeat Grendel. Beowulf was a strong warrior, therefore, he was capable of defeating Grendel. The Anglo-Saxon warriors strongly believed that if a person could accomplish a task that would help others, it was his duty to complete that task. Beowulf, does in fact, go and mortally wound Grendel by ripping his arm off. He does his
These values include their belief in boasting, revenge, and loyalty. Who wants to be forgotten after death? Clearly not the Anglo-Saxons who believed that all that remained of a person was his fame. This belief explains the outrageous boasting the characters within Beowulf do. When Beowulf arrives in the Danes' kingdom, he begins boasting as he is asking permission from King Hrothgar to fight the monster Grendel who has terrorized the Danes for "twelve winters," (l. 147, 27).
He slaughters the monster Grendel, a descendent of Cain, Grendel’s mother and a dragon. By including the mere first eighteen lines of the section The Coming of Grendel in the poem “Beowulf,” the anonymous author successfully reflects the various customs of the Anglo-Saxons, the magnanimity of King Hrothgar and the values of the Anglo-Saxons. It is perhaps the most suitable opening for a work of admirable heroism; revealing grandiose, powerful and gloriousness of the Anglo-Saxons’ period. Anglo-Saxons lived in times when people believed war was essential for survival whether it was against man, or a ferocious creature. Through such conditions developed the battle customs of the Anglo-Saxons.
Beowulf declares his allegiance to his lord and is willing to come to the Danes’ aid. Hrothgar knows that Beowulf is only in Denmark to “follow up a... ... middle of paper ... ...mately, Beowulf’s traits of loyalty, strength, and bravery were what an Anglo-Saxon warrior strived for to win glory for himself and his lord. Beowulf is the heroic prototype for future warriors, and his character has set the stage as one of the most influential classical heroes in literature. Works Cited "Beowulf.” Period Introduction Overview. The Norton Anthology of English Literature.
The Heroic Quest of Beowulf In Heaney’s Beowulf, Beowulf exhibits the traits of an epic hero through his three battles of good versus evil and his lifelong quest to rid the world of demons. A quest must begin with a quester, and in this poem, his name is Beowulf and he must perform heroic actions to complete his quest. The quester is often the hero of any book or poem. His goal is to do something meaningful and heroic that will sometimes bring the quester fame and fortune. In Beowulf, the quester is Beowulf and he partakes on a quest in Denmark.