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Beowulf, Christianity, and Paganism

- Beowulf, Christianity, and Paganism The poem Beowulf is a renowned story that displays many different surroundings and religious beliefs. Some may believe the story of Beowulf portrays pagan beliefs or customs and others believe that the poem is more in agreement with Christian ethnicity. The author of Beowulf uses both Christian and pagan elements in the poem to define the heroic warrior, Beowulf, and the evil dragons. After reading Beowulf the author clearly shows how Beowulf is a man who is filled with Christian customs and is willing to die and defend the world against evil using the help of God....   [tags: Beowulf Christianity Religion Essays]

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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - Beowulf and Christianity

- Beowulf and Christianity It was a dark time and the devastating effects of war had taken their toll. Many had given up hope entirely that things would ever get better, that the land of present day England would cease its bloodshed. From the conquests of the Romans, to the Germanic tribes, to the Vikings, the people of the British Isles had been battered. They needed a hero, someone who represented strength, decency, and bravery. So came the story of Beowulf. Beowulf is a fictional hero of this time....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Beowulf (Christianity vs. Paganism)

- Christianity vs. Paganism In the story of Beowulf, there is a noticeable struggle between Christianity and Paganism, and the characters personal battle between the two. Throughout the story the characters display actions that lead towards Paganism and Christianity. Contrary to Pagan belief Beowulf is seen as the epitome of good and beneficent to all of mankind. In Beowulf, the people showed their faith and love in God, however due to horrific events, paranoia caused them to look for a quick fix and turns them to Paganism....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf and Christianity

-      Morality, a standard of right behavior, was one of the most important characteristics during the Anglo-Saxon era. The story Beowulf depicted many virtues of the times. Beowulf holds his morals and virtues above all else, from the way he fought in battle until the day he died.      Beowulf showed his honor as he traveled from his homeland to battle the vicious monster Grendel, who was terrorizing the Danes. Grendel “raided and ravaged” (105) the mead hall, showing no honor by killing inebriated men in their sleep....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Christianity and the Beowulf Poet

- Christianity and the Beowulf Poet In my initial study of Beowulf it seemed to me that the Christian references in it were overlaid onto the essentially pagan tale that makes up the bulk of the poem. So I innocently decided to investigate this incongruity as the topic of this paper. And so I found myself smack-dab in the middle of an argument that has evidently raged for the last one hundred years or so. I found sources that ran the gamut from the position that Beowulf was a quintessentially Germanic pagan work that had been corrupted by some revisionist monastic scribe (Mooreman 1967), to the assertion that the author intentionally created a Christian allegory along the lines of Book...   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Christianity & Paganism in Beowulf

- Beowulf was written in the time when the society was in the process of converting from Paganism to Christianity. In this epic poem, these two religions come through the actions of its characters. The acceptance of feuds and the courage of war are just a few examples of the Pagan tradition, while the Christian mortalities refrain from the two. Beowulf is torn between his Christian heart to help the people as well as the selfish reward of Paganism. Though he wants the Christian’s respect he thrives for the satisfaction of fighting....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Christianity and Paganism in the Epic of Beowulf

- Christianity and Paganism in Beowulf The story of Beowulf shows the effect of the spread of Christianity in the early Danish paganistic society that values heroic deeds and bravery above all else. The mythical creatures that Beowulf kills with his supernatural strength make the story into an epic celebrating the life of a great hero. However, blending in among Beowulf's triumphs against the three key creatures, we also see Christian virtues being instilled upon the listeners. The good qualities of loyalty, humility, sacrifice for the good of others, and sympathy for those less fortunate are seen woven into the text as well as the negative consequences from greed and pride....   [tags: The Epic Poem Beowulf]

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Reconciling Ingrained Traditions with Newly Emerging Christianity

- Before the eighth century, England was a pagan society, the English originated from a society marred in idolatry and polytheism. The intermingling of Christian and pagan elements in Beowulf are consistent with the attitudes toward religion that are found in Bede’s Ecclesiastical History of the English People. Beowulf is written on medieval Scandinavia which was a highly pagan society, however the narrator is telling this story within the timeframe of medieval Anglo-Saxon Britain which was highly Christianized....   [tags: paganism, beowulf, christianity]

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Epic of Beowulf - Where Did the Christianity in Beowulf Come From?

- Where Did the Christianity in Beowulf Come From.      The Christian influences in Beowulf ultimately came from the Christian/Catholic Church of Rome which converted Romans, and thereby the Roman legions and thereby the occupied provinces. Also the Christian/Catholic Bishop of Rome sent missionary priests and monks to the British Isles to proselytze the population. There are additional considerations too.   First of all, let us be clear about the fact that the conversion of Britain to Christianity began quite early....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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The Clash of Paganism Versus Christianity in Beowulf

- Beowulf is the first great English literature. Beowulf was written around A.D. 700 by an anonymous Christian monk. One of the essential concerns of this epic poem is whether or not it is of pagan or Christian origin, or whether it has pagan or Christian influences. The unknown author was undoubtedly a Christian, but also knows just as much about paganism. Paganism and Christianity clash and merge in this poem. Furthermore Beowulf viewed as explicitly Christian or pagan literature, the text represents some of both religions throughout this poem....   [tags: biblical, vengeance, fate]

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Beowulf, R. M. Liuzza

- Sean Edwards Professor Wallace ENGL 2300C October 9, 2014 In the Introduction to his translation of Beowulf, R. M. Liuzza suggests that the poem establishes “a kind of spiritual solidarity between the pagan past and the Christian present” (30). While the poem certainly establishes a solidarity between the two beliefs, the way the two intertwine throughout the poem suggests that it is more of a melting pot of the two beliefs, rather than just a “spiritual connection.” The melting pot of the two religions is displayed during Beowulf’s fights against the three monsters: Grendel, Grendel’s Mother, and the dragon....   [tags: Christianity, Bible, Beowulf, Paganism]

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Christianity Came Earlier to Britain and to Beowulf

- Christianity Came Earlier to Britain and to Beowulf       Christian references/allusions appear in Beowulf on six dozen occasions. Some scholars of the Anglo-Saxon period express erroneous notions regarding the arrival of Christianity into Britain. Janet Backhouse in her book The Lindisfarne Gospels, says that these gospels, written about 700AD, were made in north-east England “less than a century after the introduction there of Christianity” (Backhouse 7). Her view of dating Christianity in Britain to the time of Pope Gregory the Great in the 590’s is a popularly held misconception....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Paganism and Christianity in Beowulf

- Beowulf is an epic poem that centers around the hero Beowulf, a Geat from Sweden who crosses the sea to Denmark in a heroic quest to save King Hrothgar, king of the Danes and the builder of Herot, and his men from the demonic monster Grendel who kills and feasts on Hrothgar’s warriors. Beowulf’s adventure does not end when he defeats Grendel though, he must also kill Grendel’s mother because she seeks revenge for her son’s death. Once Beowulf kills Grendel’s mother, he goes home and soon becomes the king....   [tags: Epic Poems, Grendel, Anglo-Saxon]

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How Christianity and Paganism Coexisted in Beowulf

- ... Herot hall is a symbol of Heaven thorough the way it was built. Lines 460-65 tell how it was built: “Hrothgar’s wise men had fashioned Herot/To stand forever; only fire,/They had planned, could shatter what such skill had put/Together, Swallow in hot flames such splendor/Of ivory and iron and wood.” This shows that only the devil can destroy this magnificent building. The poem symbolizes Beowulf jumping in to Grendel’s Lake as a baptism. In line 594-95 shows that he was protected by God: “Light burned all around him, the lake/Itself like a fiery flame.” The light burning around him is meant to show that God is with him....   [tags: beliefs, views, devil, symbolism]

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The Elaborate Role Of Religion In British Literature

- In British Literature religion plays a role in a vast majority of works. Even if the role is not explosively apparent, there are a generous amount of small inspirations and distortions in the texts. Some texts are theorized to have even been altered from their original state to reflect an amount of religion in them. Other texts are formatted as a result of religious influence. Religion has an elaborate and intricate influence in a variety of ways in many works throughout the development of British Literature....   [tags: beowulf, christianity, epic poem]

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Beowulf and The Intent of Christians to Convert Pagans Into Christianity

- Before England was the superpower it is known to be today, it was a small country inhabited by many groups of people over time. First to England came the Celts, then the Romans, and then the Anglo Saxons. The Anglo Saxon’s traveled to England from the northern countries of Germany Norway and Sweden. When they arrived, they brought their gods with them. The Anglo Saxon’s religion consisted of multiple gods and goddesses and their own view of Heaven and what it would be like. The Anglo Saxon’s also loved poetry, and they used it to keep track of the history of their people....   [tags: anglo saxons, christ, god]

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Christian Sybolism in Beowulf

- Christian Sybolism in Beowulf Within the poem Beowulf, the poet utilizes the Christian religion to symbolize the elements of good and evil and Heaven and Hell. Beowulf is the oldest known English epic poem. The manuscripts date back to about 1000 A.D., when two scribes wrote it down for posterity. The poem was handed down from the Anglo-Saxon period, and through the retelling of the poem, it changed a little each time. The poem creates an oral depiction of an epic hero who strived to fight against the forces of evil....   [tags: Christianity epic Poem Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf : The Epic Of Beowulf

- ... There are instances in Beowulf showing relatable lines to verses in the Bible. John Niles writes, “attempts to show a specific correlation between Beowulf and parts of Scripture tend to break down in the face of the failure of the text to match its supposed source in other than commonplace ways” (Cain). When Hrothgar praises Beowulf by saying that whoever the woman was who bore him, "the everlasting Lord was gracious to her in her childbearing" (945-946), in accordance to Luke 11:27, "Now as he was saying these things, a woman from the crowd called out to him: “Happy is the womb that carried you and the breasts that nursed you!” Cain claims that the poet makes a direct reference to the...   [tags: Bible, Old Testament, Christianity, Cain and Abel]

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Beowulf : Salvation Vs. Temptation

- ... Not only is Grendel seen as evil for his ancestry, but he is clearly depicted as the devil throughout the epic battle between Beowulf and himself. “It was well-known to men / that the demon foe could not drag them / under the dark shadows if the Maker did not wish it” (705-707). Grendel represents this “demon foe” who is literally dragging away the Danes’ beloved friends from Heorot. Grendel feels no sorrow for the evil he has set upon the Danes: “but the very next night he committed / a greater murder, mourned not at all / for his feuds and sings—he was too fixed in them.” (135-137)....   [tags: God, Religion, Devil, Christianity]

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Reconciling Ingrained Traditions with Newly Emerging Christianity

- Before the eighth century, England was a pagan society, the English originated from a society marred in idolatry and polytheism. The intermingling of Christian and pagan elements in Beowulf are consistent with the attitudes toward religion that are found in Bede’s Ecclesiastical History of the English People. Beowulf was written in the Middle Ages (500-1000) on Scandinavia, which was a highly pagan society, however the narrator is telling this story within the timeframe of medieval Anglo-Saxon Britain, which was undergoing Christianization....   [tags: beowulf, christianization, pagan society]

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Comparing Beowulf And Sir Gawain And The Green Knight

- ... As it was early in the Conversion of the English to Christianity one might also consider this work evangelical in ways. Throughout the story the narrator never directly mentions Christianity; however he makes many references to God, and gives the impression that although Beowulf was once a pagan, because he trusts and believes in God, he is more strong, and worthy person. This God impression is imposed in the play by the pagan aspects including the demonic like creatures of Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and the dragon....   [tags: Christianity, Religion, English people]

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Comparison Between Beowulf And Beowulf

- ... Perhaps he could lift our affliction. No, Unferth no. No, the gods will do nothing for us that we cannot do for ourselves.” (“Beowulf” Zemeckis) In the movie Horthgar does not believe that Christianity will help his kingdom that’s why he declines practicing the religion. In the poem, at almost every moment of rejoice and success, praise and glory is given to God. Even though the Anglo Saxon warrior spirit thrives in both versions of the story the spiritual presence wasn’t shown in the movie....   [tags: Beowulf, Anglo-Saxons, Mead hall, Denmark]

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Symbolism in Beowulf to Reinforce the Importance of Religion and the Values of the Anglo Saxons

- Literature all through history uses symbolism to portray different ideas, religions, and beliefs. Throughout Beowulf symbolism is used both to reinforce the importance of religion and to impress the values of the Anglo Saxons upon the reader. Beowulf contains multiple instances of the usage of symbolism to Christianity. Symbolism is portrayed through the characters and situations in the epic poem. According to the Danes in the epic, Beowulf is viewed as a savior. Staver states, “Jesus is the young warrior who comes to earth to fight with Satan” (Staver 155)....   [tags: Christianity, evil, courage]

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The Symbolism in Beowulf

- Beowulf is an interesting story in that it has a meaning that is firmly rooted in fantasy creatures based in mythical origins while providing insight into religious ideals and practices of the time. It also speaks of tradition and the struggle of man against things perceived as evil. In this tradition especially, Beowulf is an incredible allegory regarding the struggle of good and evil in the Christian tradition. In order to consider this as such an allegory, we must define the scope of the struggle....   [tags: Christianity, Good, Evil]

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Beowulf As A Hero That Battles With A Monster By The Name Of Grendel

- ... The author introduces Grendel at the beginning of the story, it is said that the monster Grendel is to bare the mark of Cain. That he’s a monster who lives in a swap, a quote that shows how Grendel is, “Grendel, is a monster who haunted the moors, the wild marshes, and made his home in a hell Not hell, but earth, He was spawned in that slime, conceived by a pair of those monsters born of Cain, murderous creatures banished By God, punished forever for the crime of Abel 's Death" (17-24). In the biblical Genesis versus 1 Cain and Able are the sons of Adam and Eve....   [tags: Beowulf, Grendel, Heorot, Paganism]

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Epic of Beowulf - Contradictory Christian Elements in Beowulf

- Contradictory Christian Elements in Beowulf        In Beowulf the Christian element, which coexists alongside the pagan or heathen, sometimes in a seemingly contradictory fashion, is many faceted.   Certainly the Christian element seems to be too deeply interwoven in the text for us to suppose that it is due to additions made by scribes at a time when the poem had come to be written down. The Christian element had to be included by the original poet or by minstrels who recited it in later times....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Fear in Beowulf

- Pagan Aspects in Beowulf Scholars have argued about the religious stance of the epic poem Beowulf for centuries. Although the man who put the poem down on paper, known as the Beowulf poet, was a devout Christian, the actual poem itself is pagan. There are many clues in the epic that lead us to this conclusion such as the numerous references to pagan symbols, namely the symbol of fate. Also, the central idea of revenge in the poem opposes the ideas of Christianity. The poem also contains many breaches of the Ten Commandments, which prove that the story is not Christian....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Epic of Beowulf

- It is common opinion that Beowulf was written by a Christian poet. This was probably true because at the time when it was written, most of the few people who knew how to read and write were in the clergy. There are various references within the poem to elements of the Christian religion. However, the story is about Pagan people and certain aspects of their culture are even glorified. The ambiguity of Beowulf’s religious content has caused confusion as to what significance religion had in inspiring the author and in what manner the author meant to inspire or influence his audience....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Epic of Beowulf

- The epic poem, Beowulf, is one of the oldest European epics in existence. When Beowulf was written, the writer incorporated many of the ideals of the Anglo-Saxons. Some of these ideals included loyalty, bravery, selflessness, and justice and were demonstrated in the hero. Both the characters Beowulf and Grendel represent aspects of both good and evil, Christianity and Paganism, and what occurs when they collide with one another. A characteristic of an epic poem is the concern over struggles that humans face, which is presented in a serious manner....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Fate in Beowulf

- Fate in Beowulf A Twist of Fate for the Great Hero Beowulf Fate seems to be an ongoing theme in the works of Boethius and Beowulf. Whether it is a belief of Christian providence or pagan fatalism, the writers of these works are strongly moved by the concept of fate and how it affects the twists and turns of a person’s life. Fate is most often seen as the course of events in a person’s life that leads them to inevitable death at some time or another. Throughout the poem Beowulf, the characters are haunted by fate and acknowledge its strong presence in everything that they do....   [tags: Beowulf Fate Essays]

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Epic of Beowulf

- Beowulf Beowulf is the main character in the poem, Beowulf. He is a member of the Geat tribe, a follower of Higylac, and the son of Edgtheo. In the poem, the author attempts to reconcile the human and the heroic sides of his personality. Beowulf's deeds and actions toward others reflect his heroic personality. He is described as "…greater/And stronger than anyone anywhere in this world," although there is no information as to how he has received this reputation. We learn about the main character more through the eyes of the Danish soldier patrolling the cliffs....   [tags: Poem Poet Beowulf Essays]

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Civilizations and Heroism in Gilgamesh and Beowulf

- Civilizations and Heroism in Gilgamesh and Beowulf Heroism is a theme that has appeared throughout history in the literature of different civilizations. Heroes represent the principles and ideals associated with the varying morals of each individual society. The literature of Mesopotamia and Western Europe is a prime example of this. Beowulf, an Anglo-Germanic tale and The Epic of Gilgamesh, of the Sumerians, demonstrate perfectly, the ability of civilizations to convey the values and customs of their society through their literature....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Christian And Pagan Ideals In Beowulf

- Before the invention of the printing press or written history, oral history, especially in early Germanic culture, became the foremost means of transcribing values, and past events. Written down in approximately 1,000 A.D. by an unknown author, Beowulf, originally a pagan fable, became a Christian allegory upon its transcription by Christian monks. However, as scholars have debated over the religious context in Beowulf, the attempts by the monks to turn the epic poem into a Christian parable ended merged, including both original and Christian aspects....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Point Of View In Grendel And Beowulf

- Contrasting points of view in Grendel and Beowulf significantly alter the reader’s perception of religion, good and evil, and the character Grendel. John Gardner’s book, Grendel, is written in first person. The book translated by Burton Raffel, Beowulf, is written in third person. Good and evil is one of the main conflicts in the poem Beowulf. How is Grendel affected by the concepts of good and evil. Grendel is an alienated individual who just wants to be a part of something. His desire to fit in causes him to do evil things....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Pagan and Christian Rituals in Beowulf

- Pagan and Christian Rituals in Beowulf         Beowulf was written in a time when Christianity was a newly budding religion in England. Throughout the book there are obvious references to both Christian and Pagan rituals.  The characters in the epic are newly found Christians who are trying to remain true to their new faith but are weak and hence, in times of great trouble, they resort back to their Pagan traditions and gods out of fear.  Pagan rituals in the book are usually present only as reflections of the past or in times of the characters's greatest turmoil....   [tags: Epic Beowulf christbeo paganbeo]

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Beowulf as the Archetypal Germanic Hero

- The epic and oral poem Beowulf illustrates a loss of community, cultural values, and tradition. Beowulf, the main character, is an ideal king and archetypal warrior. History is relevant to Beowulf; this Germanic society was being taken over by Christian missionaries who were seeking to convert this culture. The character of Beowulf is a reflection of the Germanic culture's virtues; heroism is emphasized in the text's multiple references and constant focus on heroes and what it is to be a hero. Beowulf, who is reflective of an older generation of heroes, strives for community....   [tags: Epic Beowulf Hero Essays Papers]

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Ideal Women vs Real Women in Beowulf and The Wife of Bath

- In the Middle Age literature, women are often presented or meant to come off as an unimportant character; which can also reflect on how the author wants the women character represent. Women are usually shunned, have no say or control in what they do; due to what men desire; like Ophelia and Gertrude did in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. But these female characters that I will discuss are women with power, control, and a voice. Majority of the female character’s appearances are made to represent wickedness, evil, or a seducer who challenges a man belief; and does not symbolize perfect women....   [tags: Beowulf, Wife of Bath]

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The Role of the Great Mother in Beowulf

- The Role of the Great Mother in Beowulf Grendel's dam is not simply a "wandering fiend" (1621), a "swamp thing from hell" (1518), or a "troll-dam" (1391). She is an example of what Erich Neuhmann in his book, The Great Mother, calls an embodiment of the Great Mother in her "negative elementary character" (147). Her realms are the underworld, a cave below a lake, both symbols of the unconscious. She is begetter and child bearer, creator and destroyer of life; she nourishes and ensures the fertility of the land and people through her thirst for blood and sacrifice as a ritual for rebirth....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Beowulf: The Ultimate Hero

- A hero is one who places himself or herself at risk for another by performing great deeds of courage. In the epic poem Beowulf, the character of Beowulf is clearly a hero. Not only is Beowulf a hero because of his physical strength, but he also gives the glory to God. Beowulf is the ultimate hero who put his life on the line for an entire kingdom. Beowulf's heroism can be seen when he takes 14 of the bravest in his land to go help Hrothgar. Hrothgar was Beowulf's father's close friend who had been plagued by attacks for twelve years that threatened an entire kingdom....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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paganbeo Pagan Aspect of Beowulf

- The Pagan Aspect of Beowulf             In Beowulf the pagan aspect is revealed through many passages and many heathen rites or customs in which the form of expression or the thought suggests pagan usage or beliefs.   “The poet’s heroic age is full of men both ‘emphatically pagan and exceptionally good,’ men who believe in a God whom they thank at every imaginable opportunity. Yet they perform all the pagan rites known to Tacitua, and are not Christian” (Frank 52). Certainly the pagan element seems to be too deeply interwoven in the text for us to suppose that it is due to additions made by scribes at a time when the poem had come to be written down....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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Pagan Aspects in Beowulf

- Scholars have argued about the religious stance of the epic poem Beowulf for centuries. Although the man who put the poem down on paper, known as the Beowulf poet, was a devout Christian, the actual poem itself is pagan. There are many clues in the epic that lead us to this conclusion such as the numerous references to pagan symbols, namely the symbol of fate. Also, the central idea of revenge in the poem opposes the ideas of Christianity. The poem also contains many breaches of the Ten Commandments, which prove that the story is not Christian....   [tags: Epic Poem Beowulf]

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Beowulf and Religious Affiliation

- Beowulf and Religious Affiliation When we look at Beowulf through the eyes of religion, we see two distinctly different elements mingled together as one. In this period, before Christianity took root throughout the world, pagan religions were still widely practiced. There is evidence of this throughout Beowulf. There is also, however, evidence of strong Christian influence as well. Because of the diversity of peoples living in the land at that time, different cultures were mixed together, each taking on characteristics of the other....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf and Poor Catechesis

- Beowulf and Poor Catechesis           Beowulf is a good example of bad catechesis in the Scriptures and in church doctrine and practice. Christianity is presented by  scops/minstrels/poets who had general notions about Christianity but were lacking in the detailed knowledge.   In Beowulf the Christian elements are about equally distributed between narrative and speeches. While the poet’s reflections and characters’ statements are mostly Christian, the customs and ceremonies, on the other hand, are almost entirely heathen/pagan: At the beginning of the poem, there is the account of the pagan funeral rites of Scyld Scefing, and at the close of the poem we see the heathen rites of buria...   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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Mix of Pagan and Christian Ideas in Beowulf

- The Mix of Pagan and Christian Ideas in Beowulf Beowulf was written in England around 1000 AD. "This provides us with an idea of a poem that was written during a time when the society had converted from paganism to christianity"(Cohen 138). "We know that paganism did exist alongside Christianity during the approximate era that Beowulf was composed"(Hall 61). "The Christian influences were combined with early folklore and heroic legends of dramatic tribes, early Beowulf scholars began to investigate whether or not Christian and biblical influences were added later to originally pagan influences"(Hall 61)....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Depiction of Anglo-Saxon Society in Beowulf

- The Depiction of Anglo-Saxon Society in Beowulf The Old-English or Anglo-Saxon era extends from about 450 to 1066. The Germanic tribes from the Continent who overran England in the fifth century, after the Roman withdrawal, brought with them a language that is the basis of modern English, a specific poetic tradition, and a relatively advanced society. All of these qualities and spirit are exemplified in the eighth-century epic poem Beowulf. To begin with, much of the Old English poetry was probably intended to be chanted, with harp accompaniment, by the Anglo-Saxon scop....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Fame, Kingship, Fate and God in Beowulf

- Fame, Kingship, Fate and God in Beowulf The Anglo-Saxons were a people who lived in and ruled England from the fifth century AD until the Norman Conquest. They were a people who valued courage and leadership. They lived under kings who were "keepers of gold" and were guarded by their loyal thanes (knights). They were a Pagan culture until the Normandy conquistadors came. 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....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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Beowulf and Grettir's Saga

- Beowulf and Grettir's Saga IN THE DEAD OF THE NIGHT, someone or something, is murdering the local townsfolk. As fate provides, a stranger marches into the local bar announcing his intention to kill the menacing outlaw. The fiend returns to the scene of his crimes, and, as predicted, the outsider fights and mortally wounds the brute, which limps off to a hidden lair. The hero and his comrade(s) track the wounded villain to an underwater cave and the ensuing fray results in the death of the criminal's sidekick....   [tags: Compare Contrast Beowulf Saga Essays]

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The Perfect Ruler in the Epic Poem, Beowulf

-        The classic poem Beowulf presents the concept of the perfect king/leader/ruler. This is presented in two modes: the ideal Germanic king and the ideal Christian king. Literary scholar Levin L. Schucking in “Ideal of Kingship” states: “I have already tried to prove that the author of Beowulf designed it as a kind of Furstenspiegel (“mirror of a prince”) – perhaps for the young son of a prince, a thought with which Heusler later agreed” (36). So the author of Beowulf had in mind a human ideal of the perfect leader/ruler which he was trying to convey to the young man who was in search of the proper way, the ideal way that a ruler, a king, should govern his kingdom....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Beowulf: Christian Vs Pagan Influence

- The European epic, Beowulf, was written sometime in the eighth century in England. This time period provides us with an idea for the mixture of Christian and pagan elements because of an English society that was in the process of converting from Paganism to Christianity. Examples of Pagan and Christian traditions are presented all throughout literature. Many of the influences deal with what it going on in the world, when the piece is written. When Beowulf was written, St. Augustine had just come over to try and convert the Anglo-Saxon people to Christianity; although the conversion succeeded it was a shallow conversion, and there were still people following the Pagan ways....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf: A Mix of Pagan and Christian Beliefs

- "How the Almighty had made the earth a gleaming plain girdled with waters; in His splendor He set the sun and the moon to be earth's lamplight, lanterns for men and filled the broad lap of the world with branches and leaves; and quickened life in every other thing that moved."(Line 92) In this quote, the author describes how God made the earth and depicts reasons for him creating the sun and moon, saying that it acts like a lantern for men, lighting the earth. The author also describes how God gave life to everything else....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Beowulf and Caedmon’s Hymn

- Beowulf and Caedmon’s Hymn        In Beowulf the Christian element, which coexists alongside the pagan or heathen, may have originated in part from the works of Caedmon. The Christian element in Beowulf had to be included by the original poet or by minstrels who recited it in later times because it is so deeply imbedded in the text. The extent to which the Christian element is present varies in different parts of the poem. While the poet’s reflections and characters’ statements are mostly Christian, the customs and ceremonies, on the other hand, are almost entirely heathen/pagan....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Beowulf Returns Home

- Beowulf Returns Home Group Project Beowulf Returns to Geatish Land In Beowulf, after slaying Grendel and his mother, Beowulf returns to his home land, the land of the Geats, bearing great treasures that he has been given by Hrothgar. Beowulf goes to the hall of Hygelac and describes his courageous deeds to his lord and kinsmen, telling them of his welcome into Hrothgar's family, and of his battles with Grendel and Grendel's mother. Beowulf then proves that he is humble and loyal to Hygelac by dedicating all of his courageous deeds to his lord and people....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf : An Epic Hero

- ... With that being said, Beowulf displayed a sense of honor by giving up protection his weapons provided him with and yet still defeating Grendel with his bare hands. He viewed the using of a weapon against the beast who didn’t use one as dishonorable. Because they fought on equal terms, this showed the heroic side of Beowulf as well as displayed the bravery and strength he possessed as he went up against a beast much larger than him. Thereafter his defeat of the beast, Beowulf exhibited his victory by hanging the monster’s arm in the rafters....   [tags: Hero, Courage, Beowulf, Weapon]

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Donaldson's Beowulf

- Donaldson's Beowulf "Fate often saves an undoomed man when his courage is good" -Beowulf (Donaldson, 12) The passage that I analyzed spans the action when Beowulf returns to the halls of Heorot after a harsh battle with Grendel’s mother. He returns to king Hrothgar in the great hall of Heorot to say that he has successfully completed his boast and killed Grendel’s mother. Beowulf states that it has been a very difficult underwater battle and that he has barely escaped with his life, “The fight would have been ended straightway if God had not guarded me” (Donaldson, 29)....   [tags: Donaldson Beowulf Essays]

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Religious Beliefs Observed in Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

- Religious Beliefs Observed in Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight The significance of religious beliefs in the tales of Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, portrayed diverse roles in each story. Although it was clear that God was highly-favored and worshipped in each of these tales, the abundance of praising Him was greatly differed. Both Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the green knight are written to be believers of God and his mighty works and miracles. In this passage, the significance of religious beliefs in these tales are explained by presenting how Beowulf and the characters of his time praised the Lord for all of his works, even those that pertained to evil doings, Sir...   [tags: Religion Beowulf Gawain Green Knight]

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The Epic of Beowulf

- Beowulf is an epic poem that explores many themes and motifs within the Anglo-Saxon society. The Author, who remains anonymous, composed the epic around 1000 A.D. The literature focuses mainly on a Scandinavian warrior named Beowulf, who comes to the aid of Herot, a small town ran by King Hrothgar. Beowulf arises to rid the town of evil forces, such as the demon monster Grendel, and his savage mother who seeks revenge for the death of her son. As he ages, Beowulf presumes his title as king of Geatland, still eager to protect his loyal followers from danger....   [tags: Epic Poems, Grendel, Anglo-Saxon]

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The Poem of Beowulf

- The poem of Beowulf is a story that was written in the beginnings of Christianity in 1000 a.D, which is why abounding examples of temptation and Satan are present in the story. Beowulf was written by an anonymous Christian monk. The story takes place in what is Denmark today, it takes place in a small kingdom that’s in a “gorge” called Herot. The story of Beowulf talks about a hero who is very different from any other hero in ancient literature, because he wasn’t in trouble and in need of survival, unlike Odysseus, unlike Achilles, both of whom had to fight for their life, for survival....   [tags: historical and story analysis]

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An Analysis of the Epic Poem, Beowulf - Origin and Evolution of Beowulf

- The Origin and Evolution of Beowulf       The origin of Beowulf remains a mystery, as both the poet and the year of composition has eluded scholars for centuries.  Although "[it] is now widely believed that Beowulf is the work of a single poet who was Christian . . ." (preface, Heaney 29), I see Beowulf as a mosaic of many poets.  In this paper, I will argue that with each new translation of this Old English epic, a new author of Beowulf is born.  The twenty-first century poet Seamus Heaney, who translated the Beowulf on which this paper is based, injects aspects of his world into this ancient poem.  Published in the year 2 000, the inconsistency of this most modern text reveals the messy...   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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Epic of Beowulf

- Beowulf, the hero of the epic poem, is not an ordinary man; he is the epitome of a true hero. With the strength of thirty men in one arm, the courage to fight monsters, and the knowledge to respect and consider others' feelings, Beowulf defines the word "hero." As a thane of the Geats' king Hygelac, and later as king of the Geats, Beowulf uses his courage and wisdom to help him win many battles and competitions against humans and monsters. Beowulf's list of victories consists of his swimming contest with Breca, the slaying of sea monsters, the dismembering of the monster Grendel, decapitating Grendel (or Grendel's mother), and killing the dragon....   [tags: Poem Poet Beowulf Essays]

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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Dating and Locating the Composition of Beowulf

- Dating and Locating the Composition of Beowulf       Dating and locating the composition of Beowulf is impossible to do with precision at this time because we do not have enough information about the poem’s specific historical context and because the poem is not constructed in such a consistently symbolic way to warrant a single allegorical-historical interpretation..   Estimates of the date of the poem’s composition “range from 340 to 1025, with ca. 515-530 and 1000 being almost universally acknowledged as the possible extremes” (Bjork 13)....   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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The Epic Poem, Beowulf - Vengeance and Revenge in Beowulf

- Vengeance and Revenge in Beowulf   The oldest of the great lengthy poems written in English and perhaps the lone survivor of a genre of Anglo-Saxon epics, Beowulf, was written by an unknown Christian author at a date that is only estimated.  Even so, it is a remarkable narrative story in which the poet reinvigorates the heroic language, style, and values of Germanic oral poetry.  He intertwines a number of themes including good and evil, youth and old age, paganism and Christianity and the heroic ideal code, into his principal narrative and numerous digressions and episodes; all of which were extremely important to his audience at the time.  Vengeance, part of the heroic code, was regard...   [tags: Epic Beowulf essays]

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Epic of Beowulf Essay - Lindisfarne and Christian Influences in Beowulf

- Lindisfarne and Christian Influences in Beowulf       The Beowulf manuscript, written around the year 1000 and containing approximately 70 Christian references/allusions, could owe part of its Christianization to the Catholic bishops, priests, monks and laity who made The Lindisfarne Gospels a reality about 300 years prior.   “. . . the poem is the product of a great age, the age of Bede, an age which knew artistic achievements of the kind buried at Sutton Hoo, an age in which art and learning were united to produce great gospel books like the Lindisfarne Gospels, now in the British Museum,  ....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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essay on beowulf

- In Beowulf, both pagan and Christian elements are present which add religious contrast to the poem. The poem begins with the king, Hrothgar, taking the throne of the Danes. During his reign, one of Hrothgars’ accomplishments included the building of the great Mead hall which served as a place of relaxation for his troops. Years passed and an evil monster came and terrorized the Hall. Then the great warrior, Beowulf, a foreigner offered to help rid the town of the monster. In the end, good triumphed over evil as he defeated the monster and returned the city to it’s people....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Fate, Destiny, and Predestination in Beowulf

- Fate, Destiny, and Predestination in Beowulf An epic story is one that combines elements of supernatural powers and heroic deeds with plebeian troubles. In Beowulf , the unknown author paints a typical yet magnificent tale that is one of the great epic chronicles of the Middle Ages. Like the poems of Homer, Beowulf possesses terrible monsters, men with supernatural powers, the search for glory, and deadly defeats. However, this medieval account brings a new element into the folds: the association between established religious forces and personal choices....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Beowulf - Pagan or Christian Epic?

- Beowulf Pagan or Christian Epic Beowulf: Pagan or Christian Epic. Although the story of Beowulf is filled with references to religion and faith, many discrepancies occur throughout the story that suggest that Beowulf is not a Christian epic. The character of Beowulf frequently speaks to God and obviously believes in His existence. However, pagan practices are mentioned in several places. Beowulf often refers to another being rather than the Christian God. Pagan practices of cremation and blood-drinking are included in the epic....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Epic of Beowulf

- The 8th century epic poem Beowulf illustrates a loss of community, cultural values and tradition. On the other hand, an elegiac passing of an extraordinary hero and the relationship between the themes of mortality and heroism are well discussed in Beowulf. Beowulf’s character exemplifies the Germanic and the Anglo-Saxon ideals of the hero: strong, fearless, bold, loyal, and stoic in the acceptance of fate. Despite his lack of humility, Beowulf was the definition of a hero in his own time by his demonstration of chivalry and his important roles in society....   [tags: Epic Poems, Grendel, Anglo-Saxon]

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Heroism as the Main Theme of Beowulf

- Heroism as the Main Theme of Beowulf The main theme of Beowulf is heroism. This involves far more than physical courage. It also means that the warrior must fulfil his obligations to the group of which he is a key member. There is a clear-cut network of social duties depicted in the poem. The king has an obligation to behave with generosity. He must reward his thanes with valuable gifts for their defense of the tribe and their success in battle. This is why King Hrothgar is known as the "ring-giver." He behaves according to expectations of the duties of a lord when he lavishly rewards Beowulf and the other Geat warriors for ridding the Danes of Grendel's menace...   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf Is A Pagan Work

- The poem Beowulf was written in England sometime in the 8th century. It was written during a time when the society was in the process of being converted from paganism to Christianity. The Christian influences are combined with early folklore and heroic legends of Germanic tribes. Yet, the pagan elements in the epic poem Beowulf clearly overshadow the Christian elements, and it is visible in the character’s superhuman personifications, their hunger for revenge, and their strong belief in fate....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Remaking Beowulf as a Christian Hero

- Remaking Beowulf as a Christian Hero The story of Beowulf is full of religious references and symbolism, but is it truly a Christian story. According to the narrative, Beowulf is an instrument of God, an instrument of righteousness called by God to perform His will for the Danes. In stark contrast to his good, is the enemy, Grendel, the incarnation of pure evil. These two characters appear to represent the forces of good versus the forces of evil. It would be easy enough to leave the story that way, but it appears that Beowulf is written intentionally to make the main characters appear more important by adding Biblical references to the narrative....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Women in Beowulf and Lanval History

- Property of the King: Life of Medieval Women in Beowulf and Lanval History has been recorded throughout time in stories, books, poems and other literary works. These writings give historians and readers of the present day valuable insights into the lifestyles, beliefs, society, economics, politics and pagan religion of the time period they originate. Authors are greatly influenced by the beliefs and attitudes of their own society and time. The works they write provide a window to the past that allows us to peak through and see what life was like for the people of that particular history....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf: A Christian and Pagan Poem

- Beowulf – a Christian-Pagan Poem        In Beowulf the pagan aspect is revealed through many passages and many heathen rites or customs in which the form of expression or the thought suggests pagan usage or beliefs. The Christian aspect is revealed through 68 passages in which the form of expression or the thought suggests Christian usage or doctrine (Blackburn 3). The Christian element seems to be too deeply imbedded in the text of Beowulf for us to conclude that it is due to additions made by scribes at a time when the poem had come to be written down....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Beowulf Attacks Grendel's Mother

- Beowulf Attacks Grendel's Mother (A Short Description of the Passage) Beowulf sees Grendel's mother in a cave. He tries to hit her with his sword, Unferth's Hrunting, but it fails to pierce her skin. So he throws the sword away and attacks the mother with his bare hands. He trusts "in his strength, his mighty hand-grip." Beowulf manages to throw Grendel's mother down; however, she quickly retaliates and is soon sitting on top of him. She tries to kill him with a dagger, but Beowulf's armor protects him this time....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Beowulf Vs. Eaters Of The Dead

- Great Literary Epics of the Past The Roman conquest of England in 43 AD, coinciding with the introduction of Christian values, the alphabet and writing utensils was the start of a new Era. Missionaries sent by the Roman Pope to England influenced the pagan values of the native Britanie, as exemplified in their literature. Anglo-Saxons, whom contributed the features of a literary Epic, were torn between pagan beliefs and Christian values as their predecessors had been. The first literary Epic, Beowulf, illustrates the struggle between these two ideologies, as well as contributes the sought after values of heroism....   [tags: Michael Crichton Book Comparison Beowulf]

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Beowulf: A True Hero

- Religion in Beowulf The famous poem Beowulf was written sometime in the eighth century by an unknown poet. It was based on legend passed down over time. Prior to the time the poem was written, Anglo Saxons had converted from Germanic Paganism to Christianity. Some people argue that it was a Pagan poem rewritten by a person or persons educated in Christianity. “ has come down from heathen times and acquired its Christian character gradually and piecemeal from a succession of minstrels.” ( Hector Monro Chadwick as quoted by Brodeur 182), while others believed that Christianity and Paganism both belonged in the poem....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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Epic Of Old English, Beowulf, Is The Oldest Surviving Long Poem?

- ... With this fair understanding of the religion, it is easy to recognize the Pagan elements in the piece of literature. What’s more is that the unknown poet of Beowulf actually writes about the Jutes and Danes- two Germanic tribes who lived in pre-Christian times. As the reader can imagine, the inclusion of such tribes calls for many references to pagan beliefs and superstitious customs. Like many other religions, Paganism places importance on a higher being but places an immense amount of importance on nature too....   [tags: Beowulf, Paganism, Epic poetry, Grendel]

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Beowulf Prepares for Battle Once Again

- Beowulf Prepares for Battle Once Again The section in which Beowulf gets ready for another monster begins with Hrothgar informing him of Aeschere's death. The murder has been committed by Grendel's mother who comes to avenge her son's death. This is the proper thing for her to do in this society. Revenge was of great importance in Pagan society. It was the norm to avenge a murder, especially if no wergild was paid. Hrothgar offers Beowulf additional wealth if he can find and kill the female monster....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

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The Nibelungenlied, Njal’s Saga and Beowulf: The Changing Definition of Masculinity

- The medieval Germanic cultures described in The Nibelungenlied, Njal’s Saga and Beowulf, place a great deal of importance on using courage and prowess in battle to determine masculinity. In many ways, modern society still values the idea of expressing masculinity through physical activity. The current stereotype of a masculine man is an athlete, a man who competes in often violent sports to establish his status relative to other men. However, sports are situational activities, scheduled deviations from normal living....   [tags: Nibelungenlied, Njal’s Saga, Beowulf]

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Pagan Burial Rites in the Epic of Beowulf

- Pagan Burial Rites in the Epic of Beowulf Scores of essays are written about the Christian influence on the Beowulf poet. Most notable Beowulf scholars such as Kl‘ber, Robinson and Whitelock do not fail to address the matter. Given the complexity of the issue and the proliferation of evidence within the poem, we can understand the universal appeal of this topic. The poet transposes his Christian convictions onto a story which formed in a culture devoid of Christianity. In many instances, however, the poem's pagan basis shines through....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essay]

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Christian and Pagan Elements in Beowulf

- In eighth century Anglo-Saxon society, history was passed down as oral stories, as writing historical events was too troublesome as there were too many dialects. In addition, in eighth century Anglo-Saxon society, there was an important transition from the old pagan traditions to the new theology of Christianity. Thus, as new stories were being told, to make them apply to the audience, Christianity had to be incorporated. Coming out of this age of transition, Beowulf has various Christian colorings along with the pagan traditions of old....   [tags: Epic Poems, Grendel, Anglo-Saxon]

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The Religious Context of Beowulf

- There has long been controversy and speculation over the religious context of the poem Beowulf. Many believe that Beowulf was written to be strictly a Pagan tale, yet some insist that there is a subtle but definite theme of Christianity that outlines the poem. Although it is tough to decipher the actual intensions of religious outlook in Beowulf, (not having discovered the true author) it is safe to conclude that both Pagan and Christian components are established within the text. Beowulf was originally thought of as a Pagan tale which happened to be scribed by a Christian monk....   [tags: Epic Poems, Grendel, Anglo-Saxon]

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