Beowulf : A Large Role For The Time Period Essays

1057 Words Oct 9th, 2015 5 Pages
In the epic poem Beowulf, women play a large role for the time period in which the poem is written, which is around 600 or 700 CE. There are two main female characters; Wealhtheow and Grendel’s mother. Wealhtheow is the Queen of the Danes. She is a good queen and even has some dialogue, which is monumental for the time and location of where the poem is set. Additionally there is Grendel’s mother, who is the queen of her domain and of the monsters, who comes into the story when she avenges the death of her only son, Grendel. But she eventually gets killed by the main protagonist of the poem, Beowulf. Grendel’s mother and Wealhtheow, both queens, protect their sons in different ways; they also have different roles in society and how they affect other people. Grendel’s mother and Wealhtheow both represent the qualities of a good and bad queen and the duties and characteristics that an Anglo-Saxon queens should have. Both Grendel’s mother and Wealhtheow look out for their sons, but Grendel’s mother does it in a more violent manner while Wealhtheow does it in a more civilized and respectful manner. When Grendel gets killed by Beowulf, Grendel’s mother decides to avenge the death of Grendel by killing Aeschere, Hrothgar’s favorite advisor. Hrothgar states, “Alas for the Danes! Aeschere is dead/. . . a soul-mate to me, a true mentor,/ my right-hand man when the ranks clashed/ . . . Aeschere was everything/ the world admires in a wise man and a friend” (Beowulf 1323-1329).…

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