Beowulf Essay, Research Paper
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Structurally, Beowulf is divided into three chief parts, each one of which centres around Beowulf & # 8217 ; s confrontation with a peculiar monster: first Grendel, so Grendel & # 8217 ; s female parent, so, fifty old ages subsequently, the firedrake. Each monster maps symbolically as a force of immorality against which can be tested the moral force of the heroic codification of award explored throughout the heroic poem, represented physically by Beowulf, the hero who most absolutely adheres to that codification. The stock list of traits and behaviours that comprise the codification of award makes up a significant part of the thematic stuff of Beowulf, as state of affairs after state of affairs is introduced to exhibit proper and improper ways to act. The relationship between King Hrothgar and his warriors, in which Hrothgar gives them hoarded wealth and a Mead hall in return for their trueness and courage, represents the proper relationship between the Godhead ( or & # 8220 ; ring-giver & # 8221 ; ) and his work forces ( or & # 8220 ; thanes & # 8221 ; ) in the Anglo-Saxon societal strategy. Beowulf himself emphasizes the importance of repute and celebrity as portion of the heroic codification, continually touting of his feats & # 8211 ; in a manner that is eminently socially acceptable in his society & # 8211 ; and depicting celebrity as a rampart against decease. Another facet of the codification explored throughout the heroic poem is the properness of retaliation: when an ally is killed, it is more honest to revenge his decease than to mourn it. This is shown by Beowulf & # 8217 ; s attack on Grendel & # 8217 ; s female parent following her slaying of Aeschere.
The first portion of the book, in which Beowulf battles and lickings Grendel, is most bemused with the thought of repute and celebrity, as Beowulf self-praises of his past workss and looks frontward to his heroic confrontation with Grendel ; the 2nd portion is most bemused with the thought of retaliation, as Beowulf helps Hrothgar avenge Aeschere against Grendel & # 8217 ; s female parent ; and the 3rd portion, in which Beowulf is an old adult male, is most bemused with the thought of destiny, or Wyrd, a sort of ineluctable, inevitable day of reckoning that hangs over the whole of the heroic poem. Beowulf & # 8217 ; s Wyrd is represented strongly by the figure of the firedrake,
the concluding monster Beowulf battles, and the one which finally kills him ; in this manner, the moral and metaphysical constituents of the heroic poem are frequently embodied straight within its physical existence. Every adult male must decease, and Beowulf’s inevitable decease is symbolically embodied in his universe by the monster destined to kill him ; by the same item, characters who adhere to the heroic codification tend to prevail, while those who violate it ( such as Unferth ) , tend to happen shame and humiliation.
Another manner in which the moral facet of the verse form is embodied in its existence is in its compulsion with patriarchal history, with the line of descent of each character and with the workss of their male parents ; characters are invariably defined in footings of their male parents and ascendants, and are invariably driven to move in a certain manner by the facts of their male parent & # 8217 ; s lives & # 8211 ; a fact that roots the heroic codification in the procedure of history and enshrines it in the warriors & # 8217 ; most basic construct of individuality.
The existence of Beowulf is one defined by the glooming necessities of the heroic codification, the prevailing dangers of the monsters, and the ambiance of inevitable day of reckoning represented by the construct of Wyrd. The universe of the narrative surely has its beginnings in a heathen, pre- Christian yesteryear, most likely originating before the Anglo-Saxon migration to England. ( Hence the Norse scenes and characters. ) But for many old ages Beowulf was an unwritten narration, instead than a written text ; by the clip Beowulf was written down about 700 A.D. , Anglo-Saxon England had mostly converted to Christianity. The Christian poet who wrote the narrative frequently struggles with the tenseness between his Christian moral principle and the clearly un-Christian events of the narrative. He invariably makes asides ascribing subjects and behaviours to Christian rules ( Beowulf knows that he owes all his strength to God, Grendel is a boy of Cain, etc. ) , but finally the tenseness between the Christian moral principle of the poet and the heathen aura of the narrative is irresolvable ; it animates the heroic poem throughout, leaving a heightened tenseness and a more baleful feeling of suspense.