Heroic Heroism In Beowulf

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The epic poem Beowulf describes the most heroic man of the Anglo-Saxon times. Beowulf was established as the earlier form of heroism and was then later introduced into the English culture. Highly praised and admired by his people, the Geat leader possesses several distinct traits that allow him to be defined perfectly as an ideal Anglo- Saxon hero. Beowulf exemplifies an ideal Anglo Saxon hero who holds the characteristics of eagerness to seek glory and fame rather than richness and treasures, loyalty and graceful attitude toward his rulers and followers, immense courage in the face of overwhelming danger, contradictory beliefs of faith and fate, and strength and courage on the battlefield. Thus, Beowulf is visioned to be the archetype of an …show more content…
Due to the introduction of Christianity at the time, the monks who preserved this poem unconsciously included their beliefs when transmitting it into a manuscript. In this poem, fate is a significant accountable factor to Beowulf’s heroism. The man “survives only through the protection of God, that all earthly gifts flow from God, and that the proper bearing of man is to be humble and unselfish” (Little, Par 1). However, there is also a strong sense of heroic pride within Beowulf which is at times in direct conflict with these Christian values. Beowulf had great faith to god, he even putted his life in the hands of god. “Whichever one death fells/must deem it a just judgement by God" (Lines 440-441). With such confident of faith, Beowulf undoubtedly earned the name of a hero. The poet had also allowed the readers to see the close relationship between Beowulf and God. After the extermination of Grendel, Hrothgar congratulated Beowulf to have god on his side assisting him: “But now a man,/ with the Lord’s assistance, has accomplished something/none of us could manage before now for all our efforts” (Lines 938-940). Again, Beowulf illustrated an ideal hero, because god had been alongside with Beowulf throughout the poem. Aside from faith, Beowulf also allowed fate to take over the results of his battles. As Beowulf was prepared for his battle against the dragon, he explained “What occurs on …show more content…
Every battle encountered, Beowulf refused to show any signs of fear or hesitancy. Instead, he takes on the challenge and kills those who come before him. One of Beowulf’s grand battle was against the demonic Grendel “haunting the marches, marauding round the health/and the desolate fens; he had dwelt for a time/in misery among the banished monsters” (Line 103-105). Grendel sought out and murdered thirty men, invading the land of the Danes for 12 years. It is claimed that those who challenged to fight the monster wore an abundance of armor, but “never outlasted an entire night” (Line 520). When it came time for Beowulf, he vows to fight the monster without weapons, showing his incredible courage and willingness to die in the fight if necessary. “unarmed he should face me/ if face me he dares” (Line 684-685). Fighting unarmed will bring the hero greater honor to slay the foe with his bare hands because Beowulf 's vanity will not allow him to miss an opportunity for even greater glory, even if it means his death and disaster for the innocent people he professes to defend. When Grendel arrives and “ripped open/the mouth of the building,” Beowulf seeks

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