Beowulf Essay, Research Paper
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Beowulf & # 8211 ; Analysis of the Epic
The Anglo-Saxon heroic poem Beowulf is the most of import work of Old
English literature, and is good deserved of the differentiation. The heroic poem
Tells the narrative of a hero, a Norse prince named Beowulf, who
rids the Danes of the monster Grendel, a descendant of Cain, and of
his feats contending Grendel & # 8217 ; s female parent and a Dragon. Throughout the
heroic poem, the Anglo-Saxon narrative Teller uses many elements to construct a
certain deepness to the characters. Merely a few of the of import character
elements in Beowulf are Wealth & A ; Honor, Biblical & A ; Paganistic, and Man
vs. Wild subjects.
Many of the characters in Beowulf are, like in most heroic poems,
defined by their position. But, in add-on to position, the Anglo-Saxon
civilization besides adds an component of award. To the Anglo-Saxons, a
character & # 8217 ; s importance, every bit good as their wealth and position, where
measured non merely in pecuniary footings, but it was besides measured in footings
of award, celebrity, and achievements. Hrothgar, male monarch of the Danes, is
one illustration of the Anglo-Saxon measuring of importance in Beowulf.
In Canto 1 the narrative Teller describes his wealth and importance, non
as hills of gold or gems, but alternatively as his ability to & # 8220 ; [ take ] the
Danes to such glory. & # 8221 ; and as his inclination to & # 8220 ; In conflict, [ leave ] the
common grazing land untasted, and taking no lives. & # 8221 ; Through this show
of compassion for the common man who doesn & # 8217 ; t battle in conflicts, Hrothgar
proves the full extent of his award and hence the extent of his
wealth and position. Beowulf, the hero-prince, besides proves his true
wealth and position through his workss as guardian of the Danes.. As he
battles and lickings Grendel, Beowulf Earns Fame and wealth from his
comrades, and from the Danes, but more significantly, he earns award
raising him to the degree of an archetypical hero. Grendel, on the other
manus, is the entire antonym of Beowulf. He has no wealth, no award,
and he in ill-famed as an evil slayer. This deficiency of wealth and award
defines Grendel as a symbol of immorality and corruptness. In add-on to
utilizing Honor and wealth to specify a character & # 8217 ; s character, the
story-teller ( s ) have incorporated alternating Biblical and Paganistic
motives in the epic-poem.
The original Epic was evidently Paganistic due to the clip
period of it & # 8217 ; s creative activity. But, as clip wore on, the revising and
touching up of the manuscripts by assorted beginnings including spiritual
monastics, caused the characters to hold little Christian features.
These Christian subjects have become really of import to the heroic poem to add
am component of deepness that wouldn & # 8217 ; t be possible in modern times due to
the doomed of the Anglo-saxon civilization and beliefs. An illustration of the
Biblical motive in Beowulf is Grendel. Grendel it biblically described
as immorality in this extract:
[ Grendel ] was spawned in that sludge,
Conceived by a brace of those monsters born
Of Cain, homicidal animals banished
By God, punished everlastingly
for the offense
Of Abel & # 8217 ; s decease. The Almighty drove
Those devils out, and their expatriate was acrimonious,
Shut off from work forces ; they split
Into a thousand signifiers of evil & # 8211 ; liquors
And feinds, hobs, monsters, giants,
A brood everlastingly opposing the Lord & # 8217 ; s
Will, and once more and once more defeated.
The Biblical mention in the heroic poem has become a modern twenty-four hours archetypal
motive, and serves to give the hearer an thought of the extent of
Grendel & # 8217 ; s pure immorality and gives a logical account for Grendel & # 8217 ; s
homicidal behaviour. This illustration, non merely shows the immorality in
Grendel & # 8217 ; s nature, but besides the anguish in his bosom caused by his
Banishment from God. It serves to give the reader an thought of why
Grendel would kill the Danes for no ground other than their
felicity. Beowulf besides has a spiritual motive to his character. One
illustration of this is in Canto 6 line 381 in which Hrothgar provinces, & # 8220 ; Our
Holy Father had sent [ Beowulf ] as a mark of His grace, a grade of His
favour, to assist us get the better of Grendel and stop that terror. & # 8221 ; This spiritual
description shows Beowulf as a kind of christ sent by God to salvage adult male
from evil. But, more than that, since Beowulf is in fact non a
christ, this description shows the good in Beowulf & # 8217 ; s bosom and the
intent of his mission. Another Biblical mention in Beowulf is
shown in the tower of Herot which is really similar to the tower of
Babel in the fact that it & # 8217 ; s built as a mark of high quality and
achievement. Like Babel, though, Herot merely serves as a symbol of
downfall more than one of glorification because it causes many deceases and the
coming of Grendel.
Apart from Wealth, Honor, and Paganistic vs. Biblical subjects
and motives, character is besides shown through a certain Man vs. Wild
motive. This motive shows the difference between world & # 8217 ; s ways ( good ) ,
and evil & # 8217 ; s wild nature ( evil ) . Grendel for one, is wholly wild and
is hence shown as immorality. His wild place, & # 8220 ; Grendel, who haunted the
Moors, the wild fens, and made his place in a snake pit non hell but
earth. & # 8221 ; shows his wild, wild, and therefor evil nature. Grendel & # 8217 ; s
wilderness is countered in world & # 8217 ; s ways, particularly Beowulf & # 8217 ; s.
Beowulf is tame and civilised, the epitomy of goodness and pureness.
Beowulf doesn & # 8217 ; t fight evil in a wild mode, instead, as shown in his
first conflict with Grendel. First off, Beowulf is pure and shows
this before his conflict when he removes his armour and vows non to utilize a
arm to get the better of Grendel. Get the better ofing Grendel, he shows that adult male,
without armour and arms, can get the better of evil in any signifier including that
of his enemy Grendel. This title serves throughout the heroic poem serves as a
symbol of Beowulf & # 8217 ; s Goodness.
Beowulf has many other such archetypal, symbolic subjects and
motives, but the most of import subjects that serve to add deepness to the
characters are the wealth, award, spiritual, adult male, and wildness subjects.
These subjects don & # 8217 ; t merely function to specify a character, but they besides
factor in as a motivation for their actions.