Essay on Beowulf : The Epic Hero Of The Poem

1229 Words Oct 27th, 2015 5 Pages
Beowulf remains one of the classics that many people read at some point in their high school or college years. This epic poem is one of the only insights to the lives that the Anglo-Saxons lived many, many years ago. Beowulf, the epic hero of the poem, gives the main insight into their culture, demonstrating many of the Anglo-Saxon’s ideal and important traits, such as pride, bravery, and strength. He has three main fights during his life, where he faces a monster called Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and finally a dragon. Beowulf’s three fights trace the development of his heroic traits as he grew older and gained more experience and wisdom.
In the first fight in the epic Beowulf, Beowulf fights the monster Grendel, who has been terrorizing the Danes under King Hrothgar. Beowulf has always been proud, and so when he hears about the Danes’ fate, he immediately journeys to Denmark to help the people there. Once he gets permission to try to help them. Beowulf then refuses to use a weapon to fight Grendel, saying “My lord Higlac/ Might think less of me if I let my sword/ Go where my feet were afraid to, if I hid/ Behind some broad linden shield” (Raffel 47). Beowulf thinks that it is cowardly to “hide” behind a shield and armor, and he thinks that it will damage his pride if he does so. Also, Beowulf believes that his lord will think less of him if he uses a weapon to defeat Grendel, and that he must prove himself by only using his strength instead of relying on a weapon. In…

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