Essays on Beowulf

Beowulf as an epic poem
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Written by an anonymous Anglo Saxon author, Beowulf is an epic poem. In the epic poem, materialism and power in Anglo Saxon culture is shown multiple times. The values of the Anglo Saxons in Beowulf are bravery, honor, duty and loyalty. All of which are shown through acquired fortunes. The Herot hall and the characters show how materialism can bring fame and power. A quote from the text that displays materialism at its finest is “Then Halfdane’s son presented Beowulf with…...
The Advancement of “Heroes” into Modern Day 
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What would someone say if they were asked to define what exactly a “hero” is? This would be a tough question to answer because there are essentially many different types of heroes that exist, the person being asked this question just may not know about each of them yet. Heroes are those that we know exist today from movies, news, social media, etc., but they are also those that we hear about from stories and passed down from tradition or…...
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Definition of Evil in Beowulf’s Poem
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Humans come in all forms of good and evil. But Albert fish was all evil with an image of a good person. Albert Fish was a serial killer who delightfully enjoyed consuming the human flesh, or as we know a cannibal. Albert was undeniably alike to the monster Grendel, a fictional character from a poem named Beowulf. Although both Grendel and Albert didn’t have a happy ending, because they weren’t the prince charming of their story, they could’ve changed for…...
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Grendel’s hard life in Beowulf
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Grendel, a novel written by John Gardner, alters the epic Beowulf, told in the perspective of a monsterous, underworld creature, Grendel. Lacking communication from his mother and the rest of the world, he is left to seek his questions alone, basing his philosophies of life in the hands of various archetypes he encounters. Grendel is compelled in finding the meaning of life from surrounding influences as he is broken and vulnerable from an absent parental figure in his adolescence; this…...
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Beowulf Is a Strong and Cunning Hero
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“We are all just cogs in a machine, doing what we were always meant to do, with no actual volition.” – Baron d’Holbach. Oedipus following the oracles fate, Macbeth fulfilling the witches’ prophecy; these examples serve to show that there is no such concept as free will. In both Beowulf and Grendel, a lack of free will is shown to prove that no one truly has control of their own future. Grendel will always be seen as a monster. His…...
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How to Train Your Dragon
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Dragons define ruthlessness, producing fear whenever and wherever they render themselves present. The imagery of a fire-breathing dragon in various works of literature is the epitome of a fear-mongering monster. In Beowulf, the dragon’s greed urges it to sweep through towns and villages, destroying everything in its path. Acting as the third and final obstacle for the namesake main character in Beowulf, its awakening and enragement begins through the actions of a petty thief who stole the hoard of treasure…...
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Gender Roles in Beowulf and Leigh Sir Launfal
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According to J.R.R. Tolkien, ​Beowulf ​was most likely written by an 8th-century Anglo-Saxon poet shortly after England converted to Christianity. Many of its characters are historical figures from Scandanavian and Anglo-Saxon descent. A tightly woven tapestry of paganism and Christianity, the epic reveals much about social issues of the day. ​Beowulf provides insight into being a brother’s keeper and the steadfast courage required to do so. On the other hand, the lais of Marie de France point out flaws of…...
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“Monomyth”: What Is It
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Heroes go on journeys and through obstacles that shape them in every possible way no matter the talents or skills that they have. Many stories such as Beowulf, The First Knight, and The Once and Future King all prove that the monomyth is correct. Joseph Campbell succeeded in making his argument that heroes develop in stages and coined the term “The Monomyth” because it is widely accepted by psychologist, followed by authors, and seen within several famous movies. Joseph Campbell’s…...
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Revenge Is the Dominant Theme in Beowulf
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Vengeance has been a major theme in Beowulf and in John Milton’s Paradise Lost and it brings to question the real reason as to why these characters committed these acts of revenge. In Beowulf, revenge is principal to to the culture of warriors. Specifically, revenge was taken as a “blood-feud” which included fighting those who killed your kinsman, king, or lord. In Paradise Lost, Milton’s story is a revenge cataclysm. Satan tries to seek vengeance against God while Adam and…...
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Beowulf Must Protect His People
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In chronological order, Beowulf’s most important plot points can be broken down into four crucial events: Beowulf’s weaponless battle with Grendel, Beowulf’s vindictive battle with Grendel’s mother, the stealing of the Dragon’s goblet, and ultimately, Beowulf’s fatal encounter with the Dragon. These four fundamental events in Beowulf contribute greatly in the shaping of an epic poem, as they typically consist of a valiant hero, some sort of contact or conflict with extraterrestrial or other-worldly beings, as well as references to…...
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Beowulf vs The Hunger Games Movie Protagonist
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The Anglo-Saxons were split into two groups of vikings around the year 449 A.D. They had an extremely gloomy outlook on the world view. They lived an unpleasant life full of war and hard work. The Anglo-Saxons didn’t believe in afterlife or a loving God, instead they sought immortality through lof or fame. “The hero’s journey, created by Joseph Campbell, is a basic template for all great hero stories. The path is portrayed numerous ways, but in general it includes…...
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Biowulf Is a True Epic Hero
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The following exemplary essay on the topic “Biowulf Is a True Epic Hero” tells about the legendary Geat hero in the epic of the same name, one of the oldest saving works of English literature. He is the central character of the Old English poem "Beowulf", created in the 7th-8th centuries, a warrior who defeated a monster. An epic hero is the main person who has the higher level qualities and risks personal dangers to chase a main quest. Beowulf…...
BeowulfBook SummaryCourageGrendelHeroMonster
Tragic Flaw Examples
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This essay sample essay on Tragic Flaw Examples offers an extensive list of facts and arguments related to it. The essay's introduction, body paragraphs and the conclusion are provided below.Though sometimes used in stories or fables as something to aspire to, such as being proud of one’s work, pride is looked upon as quite the opposite in Beowulf. In Seamus Heaney’s translation, pride is depicted as an unfortunate, often fatal, flaw which will eventually lead to tragedy or the untimely…...
Sutton Hoo Ship Burial
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When was the discovery at Sutton hoo made? How did international events complicate the first excavation? What were some later findings? Studies show that the discovery at sutton hoo made in 1939. It contained lots of wealth and artifacts. International events complicate the first excavation because the original excavation of the mounds was destroyed in World War 2. The only evidence was the picture of the reverts in the sand. Included in the treasure are some of the finest pieces…...
Christianity In Beowulf
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The epic poem Beowulf is a tale of a warrior, named Beowulf, and the events that lead to his death. One of the main concerns of the epic poem was whether or not it is of pagan or Christian origin, or whether it has pagan or Christian influences. Even though the poem appeared to be originally a pagan story, there are many clues in the text that point to Christian influence and tradition. Beowulf is essentially a Christian story with…...
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Beowulf Analysis
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Ronis Aba September 27th, 2012 Period 6th “No better king had ever lived, no prince so mild, no man so open to his people, so deserving of praise. ” This is an ultimate description of the heroic events of Beowulf, an old Anglo-Saxon poem about a warrior who battles and destroys three horrifying monsters. Although written long ago, the emotions expressed within this work, emotions of bravery, valor, and ethics still speak to us centuries later. The anonymous author of…...
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Fate Grendel
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Position Paper: Existentialism VS Fatalism After reading Grendel, I have come to the conclusion that fatalism is the predominant determinant in the novel and in Grendel’s life. Throughout all of Grendel’s day to day actions, one can synthesize a claim as to what is going to happen next to Grendel. One can come to these predeterminations by inferring subliminal messages from the Dragon’s speech. In chapter five, Grendel meets the Dragon. The Dragon is a unique character who is an…...
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Beowulf Literary Analysis Essay
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Nick Paine 3/11/13 Beowulf Literary Analysis In the poem Beowulf, the issue of whether or not this particular period is more barbaric or is more civilized. The author of Beowulf is trying to present a certain message in the poem. The message that can be pulled from Beowulf is that even within a society of thought to be malicious and barbaric, there is still room for it to be civilized. When you think of Vikings you don’t necessarily think of…...
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Significance Of Beowulf
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Kayla M. Demaray Mrs. Walker Senior English 6 November 2009 Literary Merit and Its Significance to Beowulf Any acceptable novel has some type of significance enclosed in the structure of its story. So just what establishes this? These thoughts, expressions and meanings the author hopes to accomplish should always contain sophisticated literary merit. Well known epic poem, Beowulf, accomplishes its merit through masterfully infused figurative language, two of which are most common, alliteration and kennings. Beowulf is largely constructed around…...
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Beowulf Epic Hero Essay
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It seems as though humanity is fixed on one form of what and how a hero ought to be. The epic hero is the central figure in a long narrative that reflects the values and heroic ideals of a particular society. Beowulf is an illustration of this in most aspects because he fought for the common good, had a superhuman trait of strength in his hands, and showed tremendous courage and bravery when entering a battle despite death might win…...
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Beowulf Hero
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Intentionally exposing himself to danger when the normal human response would be to desire security and endurance, the hero’s significant mystery is that he chooses to behave as though he is immortal (Hanning 9). A hero sacrifices himself for others, including strangers (Napierkowski 514). A successful hero usually receives glory for his triumph of will over the awareness of humanity and the nature for survival. The recognition by others shows that there is something of the divine about the hero…...
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Beowulf Essay
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In the novel Beowulf the character Beowulf goes through a lot of different obstacles. There are multiple themes in the novel that reflect on Beowulf’s experiences. A big theme that was expressed throughout the story was Beowulf’s willingness to come back and fight for the Danes. By coming back whenever to fight for the Danes, Beowulf showed that he was a very loyal person.Beowulf first showed his sign of loyalty when the Danes called upon him and he decided to…...
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Women In Beowulf
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In nearly every society throughout history, women have never held an extremely important place. The role of a woman seems miniscule compared to that of a man. However, there are some women who abide to the unwritten rules of how to behave, and others who challenge those rules. The contradicting roles of the women in the poem beowulf aim to show the differences between them and how they exist in society. The characters who are mainly introduced into these various…...
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Beowulf Paper
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I’m doing my three page research paper over Beowulf, the story of a warrior from ancient times when monsters, goblins, and demons still plagued the Earth that we live on still today. Beowulf was a tall tale told for many, years to children before they fell asleep at night. It’s a story that has been around from 720-796 a. d. And hasn’t gotten old yet, because it inspires people and tells people what real hero’ s are capable of and…...
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Beowulf Epic Hero Cycle
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Have you ever wondered where the concept of creation of the epic hero cycle originated from? For over centuries, the old super hero vs. evil villain story has been told over and over again, and it all started with the Anglo-Saxons’ story of Beowulf. The archetype for all epic hero cycle stories. Various stories evolved from Beowulf, which contain the same concept, but changing the characters, setting, and etc. Beowulf displays heroic character traits, as well as many other heroes…...
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Grendel Character Analysis
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Beowulf is a heroic epic chronicling the life of one brave warrior and the battles he faces. Strangely enough the battle he is most famous for was in all likely-hood, against the easiest opponent he ever faced. The character Grendel is always portrayed as some despicable fiend who relishes killing and would love nothing more than to spend his whole life slaughtering innocent people. If, however the text is read carefully, it is quite apparent that Grendel is a classic…...
Loyalty In Classic Literature
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“Hero, a person, typically a man, who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.” (Unknown) Many aren’t known as heroes, but when you dig down deep in their life, and realize how they treat others, their strengths, their braveness, quickly you realize a hero. Beowulf, Hector, and Hercules all have many characteristics as to how they are a hero, but with loyalty, braveness, and their unnatural strengths, they are automatically all considered a hero. Beowulf, the…...
AchillesBeowulfCharacter TraitsHeroIliadLife
Beowulf Eulogy Assignment
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A glorious man has died, a very close friend of mine. His name is Beowulf, our King and mighty protector of men. He was a brave man, the bravest I knew, his steel skull never gave up on him and until the very last moment he wore that ancient battle gear through his final war for life. Our great Beowulf once said, “Grendel is no braver, no stronger than I am,” (677-678). He defeated Abel’s descendent with nothing more than…...
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Old English And Middle English Literature
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The Norman conquest of England began In 1066 and with It began a legacy that would transform he English literature entirely and make way for a new culture known as Norman England. The links created with France established sources for dispersing of Ideas and the merging of others. A new acquired taste In art was evident as well as the popular way to tell poetry through a song and dance. Old English Literature rooted from a heroic culture which established…...
BeowulfCultureEnglish LiteraturePoetry
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NAME:INSTITUTION:COURSE:DATE:ROLE WOMAN IN BEOWULF.The mislaid portion that has been principally disregarded, perhaps more through intellectual neglect than through physical damage, is the place of womenfolk within the poem. The trope of the female gallant in Anglo-Saxon literature has converted even rarer than the document that contained its tradition. The heroic rhyme of this period is too often definite as a genre dealing wholly with the intrigues of one or two incredibly heroic male characters. The adoration of the male, infrequently…...
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Essay Examples on Beowulf
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 Essay Sample on Beowulf The following sample essay on "Essay Examples on Beowulf ". A hero is defined as "A man admired for his achievements and noble qualities" (Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 1999).Beowulf and the thirty-fifth president of the United States, John F. Kennedy, are best described as heroes.The traits they both exhibit define heroism.These traits are bravery, charisma and leaving a legacy. Both Beowulf and J.F.K. were noted for their bravery.Beowulf risked his life numerous times not only to protect his…...
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Connotative Diction in Beowulf
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The Anglo-Saxon epic poem "Beowulf" is an excellent example of how an author can use connotative diction in order to bring his characters to life for the reader.This poem uses rich and descriptive words and phrases to evoke emotions in the reader towards the main characters.Throughout the novel, the author uses certain words to create strong emotions in the reader towards Beowulf and Grendel.Through his use of connotative diction, the author manages to portray Beowulf as a glorious hero and…...
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The Main Theme in the Beowulf Era Is Courage
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The following sample essay on The Main Theme in the Beowulf Era Is Courage discusses the courage of the protagonist of the epic. His strong character and the way he struggles with the challenges of fate. The Old English heroic epic of Beowulf has been told for centuries, it's one of the first known stories ever documented. It really reflects the values and ideals of life during the Anglo Saxon time period. One recurring theme that I have noticed throughout…...
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Beowulf – Light vs. Dark
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Traditionally, light means good and dark means evil.This assumption is proven in many instances of Beowulf, though in all three battles we also see contradictions to this assumption.Sometimes, what we see or assume may not always be just that.The light and dark imagery used in Beowulf helps to create this ambiguous theme and furthermore makes the contrasts between the battles more evident. In the Grendel episode, light and dark imagery are very evident.Before Beowulf arrives in the Danish kingdom he…...
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LIT 12 Beowulf Reading Check
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Who is identified as Grendel's ancestor? Cain (ll. 42-43) For how long does Grendel terrorize the Danes? Twelve years (l. 84) Why is Grendel unable to attack King Hrothgar? Hrothgar's throne is protected by God (ll. 105-6) Who is Higlac's follower? Beowulf (ll. 131-2) Who was Beowulf's rival in the swimming match? Brecca (ll. 227-8) Beowulf accuses Unferth of a terrible crime. What is it? Unferth murdered his own kin (ll. 307-8) Identify Welthow. Hrothgar's queen (l. 333) Why are…...
Beowulf Practice Test Questions
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How does Hrothgar know of Beowulf? Hrothgar was friends with Beowulf's father Where does Grendel come from? He is spawned from slime. He is descendant of Cain. He is from a hell on earth. How many men can Grendel scoop up in one hand? 30 When does Grendel attack Herot hall? Late at night Why is Grendel seeking revenge on mankind? He was banished from God and is seeking to create evil How many men does Beowulf take with him…...
Beowulf as a representation of Anglo-Saxon Society
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Telling stories, it is something that everyone can love and enjoy. This has been true for thousands of years. People would tell stories for different reasons such as to pass down traditions, legends, and knowledge to the next generations to represent the different cultures. One famous story in particular is the Epic poem of a young hero named Beowulf that was told in the Anglo Saxon society thousands of years ago. In the Anglo-Saxon culture, the epic poem "Beowulf" was…...
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Beowulf Unit Exam
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Which of the following does not reflect the oral tradition of the epic Beowulf? When the thanes feasted, the King gave the best portion of meat to the bravest warrior In Beowulf, why does Beowulf sail with his chosen companions to Hrothgar's kingdom? to help Hrothgar by destroying a monster and to gain fame for themselves What is a "mead hall"? social hall, center of royal festivities for drinking, eating, entertainment. The Danish mead hall is called Heorot. Mead is…...
British Literature Final Exam
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Chaucer Father of English Poetry Mallory Father of Le Morte d' Artur Macduff Part of Prophecy Bede Father of English History Beowulf Anglo-Saxon Epic Fleance Escaoed the Murderers Macbeth Villan & hero Beowulf Hero/ Deliverer Hrothgar Good Rulers of the Danes Wiglaf Helped Beowulf Hygelac Ruler of Geats Rudyard Kipling Beast Fable Herot Mead Hall Unferth Envious Dane Canterbury Site of Martydom Shallot Island of Medieval Fable Sutton Hoo Archeological Site. Anglo Saxon artifacts. Lyrical Ballad Start of Romantic Period.…...
English 4 Midterm Review
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Which is the best definition of an epic? a long narrative poem that tells a heroic story Which of these is a characteristic of most epics? serious, elevated language Which statement is true of most Anglo-Saxon lyrics? they were originally composed and passed along in the oral tradition Which statement is true of historical writing from early times? it can be read in the original by most readers of Modern English What quality does Beowulf share with most other legendary…...
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FAQ about Beowulf

How to Train Your Dragon
...The dragon represents much more than a plot development; rather, it symbolizes various elements of human nature and the repercussions of human desire. In both Beowulf and Grendel, the dragon is a powerful character that offers insight to other humanl...
“Monomyth”: What Is It
...Joseph Campbell succeeded in making his argument that heroes develop in stages and coined the term “The Monomyth” because it is widely accepted by psychologist, followed by authors, and seen within several famous movies. Many stories such as Beow...
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