In: English and Literature

Submitted By mhduong
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In the beginning of the epic poem, young hero Beowulf represented a rather immature young man who desired glory and was out to establish a reputation for him. At that time, young Beowulf demonstrated that reputation was an important factor to his heroism. This was portrayed at his legendary swimming match against Breca who defeated Beowulf. Unferth explains in the poem his defeat of the match however Beowulf defends himself stating that the cause of his loss was due to his epic battle against the monsters just a few days prior.

“Should I lay down my life in lending thee assistance,
When my earth-joys were over, thou wouldst evermore serve me
Instead of my father; my faithful thanemen,
My trusty retainers, protect thou and care for,
Fall I in battle” (Beowulf XXIII 5-9).

Beowulf demonstrates qualities of courage and determination when he tracks her into her cave to seek revenge of Heorot and defeats her in battle. The final battle of Beowulf with the dragon portrays that a “good king” must act almost utilitarian when his decisions are for the good of his people rather than glory. The dragon invades the country after he is angered by a man who steals a gold flagon and battles against Beowulf resulting in his death. However, his sacrifice represents that in order for his country to be at peace, he must sacrifice himself for the good of his people. Courage, determination and loyalty are important qualities of a good…...

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...Monster Beowulf perfectly illustrates the characteristics of what it means to be considered a perfect hero. The poem clearly shows his heroism in two completely different eras, Beowulf as a young man and then again when he is much older. This is shown through battles of three monsters, Grendel, Grendel’s Mother, and the dragon; each is progressively more difficult than the last. But as the poem digresses it is easy to see that the biggest monster that Beowulf fights is himself. As a young man, Beowulf is an extremely successful warrior, shown by his ginormous wins of both bravery and strength. He also exemplifies the characteristics of loyalty, respect and most importantly pride. When the poem begins, Beowulf shows little maturity as he has always had his inhuman powers. The great king Hrothgar quickly becomes a father like figure to Beowulf and begins to give wisdom about how to be a great king. This foreshadows the second half of the poem, his impressive past as a undefeated warrior has in some ways prepared Beowulf to take claim of the throne. Years later the Geat King Hygelac dies, this is important because Beowulf doesn’t simply take the throne in which he has rightfully earned instead he chooses to support Hygelac’s son as he is whom should be the king. This act of respect only further proves his characteristics as a hero. Beowulf progresses throughout the poem from a very unrealistic portrayal of a hero to an extremely realistic man. For his first battle Beowulf......

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...unsuccessful downfall in his life. Beowulf was not able to put his internal struggles to an end. Instead, these struggles brought him to his inglorious end. Greed is one of the unpropitious qualities that Beowulf possessed and battled internally throughout the course of his life.Beowulf avarice for fame is the principal factor that drove him from Geatland to Daneland in a time when no one,not even the Danes’ great lord, was able to defeat a terrifying fiend named Grendel. When he met with Hrothgar, Beowulf even stated that his lord Higlac might think less of him if he was afraid to fight the monster and “hid behind some broad linden shield“.Beowulf’s greed for gaining glory instigated Beowulf to go on a second battle with Grendel’s mother.Hrothgar said that after Beowulf defeats Grendel’s mother, he will be rewarded with “heaped-up ancient treasure” for the battle he wins.Without giving a second thought, Beowulf agreed that he will fight .The same greed also provoked him to fight the horrendous dragon. He did not want to lose his fame and for this reason, he knew he had to go in a battle with the dragon in order to maintain his glory as a king. Pride was another detrimental quality Beowulf struggled with that predominated different periods in his life.Beowulf’s overconfidence was first evident in an event that Unferth,Hrothgar’s courtier, recalls. After Beowulf enters Herot Hall and flaunts about his great achievements, Unferth referred to Beowulf as “the......

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...some type of creature. The Anglo-Saxons epic Beowulf, scribed sometime in the 9th century A.D.,presents the heroic journey of the titular hero. Beowulf serves as the only epic written in Old English and severed a porthole into the values of Anglo-Saxons culture anonymous author utilizes Beowulf as an epic hero to presents Anglo-Saxons values, but he also uses the monster to show that which this culture valued. Whereas Beowulf, like all epic heroes, such as Odysseus and Achilles from the Homeric epics, serves as the epitome a=of his culture values, the monster serve as the outcasts of that society and culture. Through the portrayals of the epic here and the three monster the author reveals the Anglo- Saxons valued super human qualities. The author presents Beowulf as a superman of the 9th century. As the story begins, Beowulf is telling King Hrothgar that he is the best of the best and that he will save his town from this creature they call Grendel. But the big kicker is is when he says if it(Grendel) “is so great that he needs no weapons and fears none. Nor will. After that was said everyone begins to party and give their great praise to Beowulf for coming to the rescue. As Beowulf comes forth, the Danes feel that they will now be able to live in peace for now on. Grendel has haunted the moors for the last twelve years and that will all come to an end when Beowulf shows up. The royal battle between Grendel and Beowulf. Beowulf began to show cases his super human......

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...Beowulf: What Makes Him a Human In Beowulf, the hero Beowulf possesses great strength, which gives him the ability to defeat vicious monsters throughout the story. His strength is not compared with any man, but only with the monsters he faces in battle. Although he possesses a seemingly un-human-like strength, Beowulf is separated from the monstrous by his caring, honorable nature, his ability to think rationally in every battle he enters, and the fact that God is on his side. Beowulf’s caring nature for his people and everyone around him are crucial aspects of his personality when it comes down to whether he is a monster or not. Although Beowulf can be looked at as arrogant and boastful, his honor and love for his people is undeniable. In passage 1 included in this essay (2177-83), Beowulf is described as a man who acts with valor: “Thus Beowulf bore himself with valour; / he was formidable in battle yet behaved with honour.” (2177-78). These lines show that Beowulf is an honorable man in the eyes of many, and that he is highly respected especially in terms of battle etiquette. He never takes advantage of the power he possesses, and he will never enter battle with a man who is drunk because it would be an unfair battle: “and took no advantage; never cut down / a comrade who was drunk, kept his temper…” (2179-80) This shows the aspects of Beowulf’s character that men highly respect because he would rather fight a man who is fully capable of fighting, not one who is at a...

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Beowulf to overcome the temptation on a daily bases. In the epic poem, Beowulf, the actions of many of the main characters reflect how revenge seduces us to make decisions that have negative impact not only on us but the people around us. Because seeking revenge more and more destroys us, the nature of evil is revenge. After spending most of his life in the dark doing nothing with his time, Grendel strives to deprive the people of Herot of their happiness. The grandfather of Grendel, Cain was banished so along with Grendel and his parents were banished as well, as a result it made him feel alone and isolated. Being alone made him a monster in only on the outside but the inside as well. “…A powerful monster, living down in the darkness, growled in pain, impatient as day the music rang…” This quote shows the impact on how being lonely change someone. It lead Grendel to snatch up thirty men, smashed them, and take them way. Grendel’s choice to focus on his pain and become self-absorbed leads directly to his violent actions. Instead of cowering in grief, the mother seeks revenge upon Beowulf for what he did to her son Grendel. She takes the king’s right hand man and Beowulf’s trophy. Something that he believes that is rightfully his. When his mother visit Herot, she carries off Grendel’s arm, which Beowulf hung high from the rafters. This indicates that Grendel’s mother, as part of her grieving, gets back at Beowulf for the killing of her son. Her personal revenge leads to an......

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...As the narrator of Beowulf describes the hero, he sets up a scene for whirlwind adventure of superhuman abilities. “In his far-off home Beowulf, Higlac’s follower and the strongest of the Geats, greater and stronger than anyone anywhere in this world” (Line 90-93). An epic hero is someone who is a larger-than-life figure who often embodies the ideals of a nation or race. Epic heroes take part in dangerous adventures and accomplish great deeds, many undertake long difficult journeys and display great courage and superhuman strength. In the poem Beowulf, the author describes Beowulf as an epic hero through his actions and adventures that are similar and different to those of a modern day superhero such as Iron Man. Beowulf possess superhuman abilities when he describes his ability to drive five giants into chains and defeats Grendel with his bare hands. “Heard in his home: of heroes then living/ he was the stoutest and strongest/sturdy and noble”(line 8-12). Through these experiences that the author tells about in the epic, it is obvious that Beowulf is more than an ordinary man. His strength is tested by mythical beings that Beowulf has easily defeated. He also has some of the mental characteristics that are common to an epic hero including, his lack of self-righteousness and his perseverance while in battle. In the story Beowulf, Beowulf takes on a responsibility of fighting a dragon, this responsibility resulted in him dying at the end of the story. In Iron Man, Tony......

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... In the epic poem of Beowulf, there are many events where supernatural strength is used by not only Beowulf himself, but as well as Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and a few other characters throughout the poem. The story starts off with the battle with Grendel, and both Beowulf and Grendel have supernatural strength, and so does Grendel’s mother. Beowulf and Grendel are both larger than life and they are both strong, and they have supernatural strength. In this poem, Beowulf does what is best for his people. He defends them and he eventually becomes king and is praised very frequently for his heroic duties. That is mainly what makes Beowulf larger than life, or what some may call famous. He takes care of his people and in exchange they take care of him. Grendel is an enormous, creature that was a decedent of Kane and he had been holding Denmark hostage for 12 years before Beowulf arrived. years. His demeanor is what really made him an outsider and people didn’t accept him. Beowulf’s first battle was with Grendel. The twelve foot beast rudely interrupted a celebration in the Hall that King Hrothgar had built for his people to come and fellowship with each other. Grendel was well known for his terrorism in many different situations. Beowulf’s warriors couldn’t harm the beast because Grendel had put a curse against all weapons to harm him. That being, Beowulf ripped off Grendel’s arm which was the only way to defeat him. King Hrothgar was pleased that Beowulf had defeated Grendel......

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...was part of their code of behavior. Refusing to do so seems insane, because otherwise how would the killing ever stop?) • So Grendel pretty much takes over Heorot Hall, although God keeps him from approaching Hrothgar's throne. (That kind of thing happens when you're the descendant of Cain, apparently.) • Everyone wants to give King Hrothgar their two cents about how to get rid of Grendel. Some of them give advice about military strategy; others turn to idolatry and offer sacrifices to pagan gods. The narrator condemns their paganism and rejoices in the fact that he lives in a time where people know Christianity and can turn to "the Lord God, Head of the Heavens and High King of the World" (181-182) for help. (Confused about religion in Beowulf? Check out what we have to say about religion in the "Symbols, Imagery, Allegory" section.) • Despite all the good advice, Hrothgar and his followers can't defeat Grendel, and he keeps killing the Danes in the darkness of night. • Across the water from the Danes in Geatland (today part of Sweden), the mightiest warrior on earth, a follower of King Hygelac, decides that he will travel to the Spear-Danes and help King Hrothgar defeat Grendel. He orders that a boat be made ready. • Everyone knows better than to argue with this warrior or try to stop him. Instead, they help him get ready. They enlist fourteen other warriors to accompany him. • Loading their ship with weapons, the mysterious hero and his followers set sail. After a......

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...Lynn Wells Dr. Brandy Lowery ENGL2322 16 September 2015 Title “Beowulf” is the universal story of life’s journey from adolescence to adulthood and to old age. The hero grows in wisdom about himself and about the world through the pain and triumph of personal experience. In the mythical poem “Beuowulf” the audience is able to see how he grows in wisdom about himself and about the world with each monster he faces. Beowulf is a hero who battles three different monsters, Grendel, Grendel’s mother and the Dragon. Each monster he faces represents different meanings to him. In times of battle, Beowulf experience many hardships and victories. Grendel is a strong evil water-monster who went to Herot Hall and slaughtered many of Hrothgar’s men. When Beowulf is called to fight Grendel he depicts himself as a man with no fear. Beowulf knows that he is a young strong warrior and is the only one who has the strength to defeat this evil monster. He accepts the challenge and announces that he will fight barehanded which concludes that he is fully confident in himself. He announces, “I have also heard the thrust of a weapon no threat to his threws. Thus I foreswear my sword and strong shield. Instead I shall grab and grapple with Grendel, fighting for life with that fearsome foe” (Gardner 40-41). Beowulf proves his expertise to defeat Grendel by keeping Grendel’s arm. As described, “ As a token of triumph, the troop leader hung the shorn-off shoulder and arm by its hand: the grip of......

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...Ms. Beaudoin English IV Honors Scholars and critical readers have various opinions about the themes of Beowulf. Choose one statement to argue for or against a particular extent and in a well-developed, proofread paper support your choice with examples and quotations from the text of the epic. 1.) Beowulf presents an ideal of loyalty. The failure to live up to this ideal on the part of others points up the extraordinary faithfulness of Beowulf. 2.) Beowulf is a blending of Christian traditions with a folk story that praises loyalty, courage, and faith in the face of extreme danger and even death. It presents a model of a human being willing to die to deliver others from terrifying evil forces. 3.) Beowulf is the story of a dual ordeal—an external battle with vicious opponents and an internal battle with human tendencies of pride, greed, cowardice, betrayal, and self-concern. 4.) Beowulf is the universal story of life’s journey from adolescence to adulthood to old age. The hero grows in wisdom about self about the world through the pain and triumph of personal experience. Requirements: (1) 3 full pages. (2) Times New Roman 12 pt. font, double-spaced, proper MLA format. (3) Work Cited page (Note this is a translated excerpt from your textbook). (4) Submission of typed hard copy in class. (5) Upload to by 7am on due date. (6) Write choice of topic number on back of hard copy. Penalties:......

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...the evolution of society. In the days of Beowulf and the Vikings, a hero was a man who was strong and courageous, willing and able to protect his tribe and provide for his people. But today, since our culture has vastly changed, so has the meaning of this word; now it is used for the brave and selfless people of the world. Though Beowulf may have acted in ways that were not so heroic, he should be recognized as a hero. Many people recognize Beowulf as the hero of Anglo-Saxon times. Beowulf was the first poem told in Anglo-Saxon England sometime between the 8th and 11th centuries, but it's not actually set in that time and place. It's actually set several hundred years earlier, in the 5th or 6th century. Beowulf does not take place in England, instead, the action happens in the land of the Danes what is known as the nation of Denmark and the land of the Geats which today is known as the nation of Sweden. The main action of the story is set around 500 a.d. Judging by Beowulf’s many feats and strengths, Beowulf’s heroism is not hard to believe. When Beowulf slays the monster Grendal in the classic tale," he was considered a great hero. The slaying of Grendel required courage, bravery, intelligence, perseverance, and mental and physical strength. Certain passages in the story support the opinion that Beowulf has all these qualities. However, in the epic, Beowulf explores the great lengths the character had to go through to succeed. Beowulf did anything in his power to prevail,......

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...Beowulf, heroic poem, the highest achievement of Old English literature and the earliest European vernacular epic. Preserved in a single manuscript (Cotton Vitellius A XV) from c. 1000, it deals with events of the early 6th century and is believed to have been composed between 700 and 750. It did not appear in print until 1815. Although originally untitled, it was later named after the Scandinavian hero Beowulf, whose exploits and character provide its connecting theme. There is no evidence of a historical Beowulf, but some characters, sites, and events in the poem can be historically verified. The poem falls into two parts. It opens in Denmark, where King Hrothgar’s splendid mead hall, Heorot, has been ravaged for 12 years by nightly visits from an evil monster, Grendel, who carries off Hrothgar’s warriors and devours them. Unexpectedly, young Beowulf, a prince of the Geats of southern Sweden, arrives with a small band of retainers and offers to cleanse Heorot of its monster. The King is astonished at the little-known hero’s daring but welcomes him, and after an evening of feasting, much courtesy, and some discourtesy, the King retires, leaving Beowulf in charge. During the night Grendel comes from the moors, tears open the heavy doors, and devours one of the sleeping Geats. He then grapples with Beowulf, whose powerful grip he cannot escape. He wrenches himself free, tearing off his arm, and leaves, mortally wounded. The next day is one of rejoicing in Heorot. But at......

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