Pagan Religion In Beowulf

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In order to preserve the pagan story of Beowulf, the myth itself was rewritten using the Christian religion as its new structure. Homer’s classic tale of Beowulf, written over 15,000 years ago, is one that many people still enjoy today. As stated by Mr. James B. Kelly “Beowulf presents itself as a rewarding but not particularly easy text for the modern reader,” since there have been many translations of the tale over the years. Reading through it though, it’s not hard to make the connections from Beowulf to Christianity since it was used as the frame to rewrite the story. The story of Beowulf is originally that of pagan religion in the Anglo-Saxon culture. But the rise of the Roman Empire and the destruction of the pagan monasteries by Henry…show more content…
When speaking of Grendel’s origins, the author describes him as a descendent of Cain. The tale of Cain and Able is a Christian story belief that helps to explain the creation of humanity. Naturally the pagan’s don’t believe this, but rather that their gods created the world and that Grendel was a child born from the Darkness. Right away there is a conflict between the two religions on the points of creation. One believes that a singular God created the world and everything on it, while the other religion believes that everything in existence came from multiple gods and that things such as darkness can create life as…show more content…
While Beowulf is getting ready for battle with Grendel, Beowulf prays to God asking that He give victory to whichever combatant seemed more just. Then, during the battle against Grendel, the author tells of how Grendel had now learned “what it meant to feud with Almighty God” (490-492). Here is another area of tension found in Beowulf, except this time it is an argument of deity beliefs. This alone would cause major tensions between the Christians and Anglo-Saxons. The Christians are monotheistic in beliefs, meaning that Christians believe in only one God. The Anglo-Saxons on the other followed paganism, meaning the Anglo-Saxon people believed in many gods. Having the main hero of a myth that originated in pagan culture make references to the god of another religion, that would be considered not only a crime of blasphemy in Christianity and showing disrespect the pagan’s gods and beliefs as well. The third, and probably the biggest, place we see evidence of Christianity in the story of Beowulf is the character of Beowulf and how similar he is to Jesus. Beowulf 's character is very much similar to that of Jesus ' in many ways. At one point in the story of Beowulf , the author describes how Beowulf is the strongest man alive then continues describing Beowulf 's other heroic traits. This depicts Beowulf to be in a level above mankind while at the same time

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