Essay PreviewMore ↓
Seamus Heaney's Beowulf
Having a good and noble king is vital to the succession and happiness of a group of people. Unfortunately, not all kings are good kings, but the welfare of their people reflects on their ability to do the job. Having a foreign or pariah king will cause the people's welfare to suffer, but when a group of people has an excellent king, they will remain joyful and prosperous until the day he dies.
If the reign of a king causes feud, then this would not have a positive effect on the group of people under his reign. In Seamus Heaney's Beowulf, Hrothgar, king of Denmark, considers giving his kingship to Beowulf, the Geat warrior who came to Denmark in order to defeat Grendel, who is the devilish monster attacking the Danes, as a service to King Hrothgar. When Queen Wealtheow, King Hrothgar's wife, hears of this, she says to him, "The word is that you want to adopt this warrior as a son. So, while you bask in your fortune, and then bequeath kingdom and nation to your kith and kin before decease. I am sure of Hrothulf" (183.1175-9). By saying this, she is warning her husband about what problems may arise if he were to give his kingship to a foreigner. She then reminds Hrothgar of Hrothulf's distinguished traits and that he is also stripping his own sons of their rights to kingship if he goes through with handing the throne over to Beowulf. Wealtheow is most likely worried about Beowulf just simply conquering their people for Geatland, the people not liking his foreign methods, she obviously does not want to take kingship rights from her beloved relatives whom she considers worthy of the role, and does not want to see friction occur between Beowulf and their kin. Wealtheow knows that allowing a foreigner to take over the throne of Denmark will cause the welfare of the Danes to suffer.
When a king goes bad, his people lose respect in him, are no longer content and successful as a people, and are likely to rebel against him. Hrothgar says to Beowulf, "Do not give way to pride"(121.1760). He is explaining to Beowulf that excessive pride is a king's worst enemy.
How to Cite this Page
"Free Essays - Seamus Heaney's Beowulf." 123HelpMe.com. 17 Jul 2018
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- In the poem, Beowulf, by an unknown poet, as translated by Seamus Heaney, we see many monstrous behaviors. A few of the examples stand out more than the rest: wanton destruction, a woman acting as a man, and the act of killing one’s kin. Wanton destruction goes against the ideals that governed the Anglo-Saxon culture. The warrior kings had duties to uphold. We see that they revered kings who would bring protection and give freely to the young and old and not cause harm. One good illustration of this is the nature in which King Hrothgar dispensed his wealth, he dispensed it to the needy and he didn’t give away “the common land or the people’s lives” (71-73).... [tags: beowulf]
1057 words (3 pages)
- Death of Naturalist by Seamus Heaney The poem "Death of Naturalist" was written by a well known Irish poet Seamus Heaney. The title "Death of a Naturalist" gives us a sense of loss. The opening line "All year the flax-dam festered in the heart" gives us specific detail like in Blackberry picking. The alliteration in the first line such as flax-dom and festered links in with the second stanza. Flax-dom is an onomatopoeia and festered has association of sickness and decay. It contrasts with the happy description in the first stanza when he recalls collecting the frogspawn.... [tags: Death of Naturalist Seamus Heaney Essays]
664 words (1.9 pages)
- Seamus Heaney's Background and Poetry Seamus Heaney had a Roman Catholic upbringing in a rural area of Northern Ireland. How does his poetry reflect his background. Heaney's poetry is able to reflect his background by his use of language and the technique he expresses his experiences. I will cover his background into three sections: his childhood, the community and his reflections. I will start by looking at his feelings and experiences in the poem 'Death of a Naturalist'. The poet remembers the time when he was a young child.... [tags: Seamus Heaney Poets Poems Essays]
3054 words (8.7 pages)
- Analysis of Seamus Heaney's North The poet Keats wrote that “the only means of strengthening one’s intellect is to make up one’s own mind about nothing – to let the mind be a thoroughfare for all thought, not a select body”. That this may be an admirable aim for a poet, and especially so for one writing against a background of ethnic violence, is not in doubt. It is, however, extremely difficult to remain neutral when one identifies oneself with an ethnic party involved in conflict. It is my intention, then, in this essay, to document how Seamus Heaney’s reaction to violence in his homeland has affected his writings, with particular reference to the volume of poetry entitled “North”.... [tags: Poetry Seamus Heaney Sexuality Poems Essays]
3770 words (10.8 pages)
- Analysis of Blackberry Picking by Seamus Heaney Once the reader can passes up the surface meaning of the poem Blackberry-Picking, by Seamus Heaney, past the emotional switch from sheer joy to utter disappointment, past the childhood memories, the underlying meaning can be quite disturbing. Hidden deep within the happy-go-lucky rifts of childhood is a disturbing tale of greed and murder. Seamus Heaney, through clever diction, ghastly imagery, misguided metaphors and abruptly changing forms, ingeniously tells the tale that is understood and rarely spoken aloud.... [tags: Blackberry Picking Seamus Heaney Essays]
975 words (2.8 pages)
- Examine two poems, Digging and Follower by Seamus Heaney and then compare the poems, explaining both their differences and similarities. The first poem I am going to examine is "digging" by Seamus Heaney. I will first comment on the title of the poem. "Digging" has both a metaphorical and literal meaning to it. The literal meaning is that his father and his grandfather are farmers. The poem talks about the men "Digging" and working, so this explains the literal meaning of the poem. The metaphorical meaning is that Seamus Heaney is "Digging" into his past and back round, which is farming.... [tags: Seamus Heaney Poems Poetry Essays]
1856 words (5.3 pages)
- Seamus Heaney's Poems Heaney was born on April 13 1939. He was the eldest of nine children. In modern day society it is common to have 2 or 3 children, and to have eight or nine children is considered very unusual. Heaney lived on the family farm, Mossbawn, about thirty miles northwest of Belfast, in County Derry. The majority of UK residents live in urban areas, and a small minority live in rural areas. It used to be more popular in the past to live in a rural area. People in rural areas live, and have lived, in a totally different culture to that of the people in urban, industrialized areas.... [tags: Seamus Heaney Poetry Poets Essays]
4016 words (11.5 pages)
- How Seamus Heaney's Childhood Affected His Poetry Seamus Heaney was born in the North of Ireland in 1939 on a farm with his mother and father and nine other siblings. Generally Heaney's poems are influenced by animals through his childhood experience, specifically within 'The Early Purges' and 'An Advancement of Learning'. Heaney grew up near Belfast, during the time of 'The Troubles', the Irish civil war. Although Heaney left at the height of the war, it is obvious his work reflects his experiences of that time.... [tags: Seamus Heaney Childhood Poetry Poems Essays]
1104 words (3.2 pages)
- A Comparison of Seamus Heaney's Mid-Term Break and Digging I am comparing two poems by Seamus Heaney- `Mid-Term Break` and `Digging`. Both of the poems are written about his childhood and his family. The first poem I analysed was `Mid-Term Break`, where the simple and straight forward title `Break` caught my attention suggesting to me that this poem is going to be a positive experience, a break from work, a time to relax. The commencing stanza, the first line reads, ?I sat all morning in the college sick bay?, which has connotation of depression, illness and suffering suggested from the word `sick`.... [tags: Seamus Heaney Break Digging Poems Essays]
2070 words (5.9 pages)
- The poem, Beowulf, by Seamus Heaney, depicts Beowulf as a perfect hero. Beowulf is the mythical son of Edgetho and later becomes the king of the Geats. In the poem, Beowulf's shows heroism in two different phases of his life, youth and old age. Throughout the poem, Beowulf faces three difficult conflicts with Grendel, Grendel's mother, and the dragon. Throughout the novel Beowulf is a noted and respected warrior from Geatland. During Beowulf's youth, he is considered to be a great warrior, portrayed by his strength, courage, and bravery.... [tags: Seamus Heaney]
750 words (2.1 pages)
When a king has the qualities that make him good, it will bring nothing but positive aspects to the lives of his group of people while their noble king is still living. Hrothgar informs Beowulf of these sought after qualities by saying, "A protector of his people, pledged to uphold truth and justice and respect tradition, is entitled to affirm that this man was born with distinction"(117.1700-3). Throughout his entire reign over Geatland, Beowulf never loses any of these desirable qualities. This causes the Geats to be very blissful and triumphant as a people. Unfortunately, when other groups of people hear about the sudden death of a king as noble as Beowulf, they are likely to attack and try to take over Geatland because the loss of King Beowulf makes it become extremely vulnerable to invasions. Though Beowulf's death is unfortunate, while he is still alive his people lead jubilant lives free of much worry or stress because he is such an excellent king.
A place containing a noble king under the throne is a very desirable place to live because his people will have lives filled with cheer and bliss. Kings' abilities at doing their job definitely reflect on the welfare of the people that they reign over. Beowulf benefits the people of the world by showing an excellent example for kings everywhere.