Heaney's Alliteration In Beowulf

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The Spear-Danes pride themselves on glory and honor in both life and death. The pagan belief in medieval Scandinavia emphasized a natural, earthly life that seemingly urged women, and specifically in the case of Beowulf, men to fulfil their worldly duties. In achieving earthly honor these warriors were eternalized through great stories and song, thus, never really dying. Beowulf portrays Heorot, a grandeur hall in which the Spear-Danes gather, eat, drink mead and reminisce about battles which establishes a fraternal setting for this epic poem. Seamus Heaney’s translation of Beowulf emphasize the poem’s alliteration, allowing the audience fluidity while reading the poem and giving it power as it is read aloud. Heaney’s alliteration seems to go deeper than this, though, he wishes to mark and stress the importance in specific lines throughout the poem. The audience’s first introduction to Heorot comes on line 78 in which the narrator proclaims, …show more content…
Heorot was the name,” boldly claiming that Hrothgar, in constructing Heorot, had instituted greatness. Through Heaney’s translation, and the narrators telling, the audience is allowed a glimpse at the most honorable and glorious mead hall in all of Denmark, with hopes that an appreciation, for the integrity and esteem that came with a warrior’s tale, would be developed. Hrothgar’s mighty building, as told, is the center of his kingdom. The narrator describes Hrothgar’s intentions for Heorot in lines 67-70 “his mind turned To hall-building: he handed down orders For men to work on a great mead-hall Meant to be a wonder of the world forever; It would be his throne.” Hrothgar had garnered enough respect and had established a large enough army that he wishes to make a memorial building in which his men would be able to eat, sleep and rejoice after battles. Heorot, though, was not just a place of human indulgence, rather it stood for

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