Similarities Between Christian And Pagan In Beowulf

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In the Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf, there is plenty of controversy over whether or not the poem was considered Christian or Pagan. It is understandable that there may be both themes seen throughout this particular work. Beowulf is referred to as a very outstanding piece of British literature during the eighteenth century. Although re-written in the eleventh century, Anglo-Saxon themes represented the ideals of Christianity in a more virtuous, and outright manner. Whereas, in Beowulf, the author makes use of many purposeful situations that lead readers to consider the intentions and major themes that they considered rare at the time. I will discuss how both of these ideologies are seen within this poem, and how Beowulf is a pagan story with undeniable …show more content…
He is willing to sacrifice his life in order to reciprocate the gift that has been given to him by his lord. When he sees Beowulf struggle with the dragon he pleas to the other warriors to help, but they flea and Wiglaf is the only one left, “I shall stand by you.” (2668). This relationship is wildly reminiscent of that of David and Jonathan in 1 Samuel within the old testament. For example, in 1 Samuel, the friends know they are not supposed to be seen together, due to king Sauls damnation of David, they meet in secret in a field and make a coventant,“Then Jonathan said to David, “Whatever you say, I will do for you.”.” (19:4). Jonathan loved David as he loved himself and a comparison can be made in this relationship of Beowulf and Wiglaf. It is made clear to Beowulf that Wiglaf is a true and loyal warrior when he comes to help slay the Dragon. When Wiglaf sees his lord hurt he showed “inward bravery and strength” the types of qualities Beowulf often saw within himself, yet now he is seeing it within someone else (2696). There is a transformation within the pride of Beowulf when he sees Wiglaf take down the Dragon; from not having his “Advantage” with a weapon, to defeating the foe being, “partners in nobility” …show more content…
The transformation that took place over the course of his journey are seen. Through his battle with the dragon and his new-found love and honor for his noble partner Wiglaf, Beowulf’s behavior—the way he fought alone, relying on his prideful transgressions—turned towards humility in His Lord. Beowulf was redeemed by his acknowledgment of his faults and understanding the true glory in God. He was able to see qualities that he pridefuly claimed to himself, in someone else. In his partnership with Wiglaf there was a deep trust that resided between them. Christian themes that read like that of Jonathan and David in the field; the kind of old testament hope that resided in the triumph of good versus evil. Beowulf’s pride and the Dragon were both defeated with the last final strike of the sword and blade. His soul did not stay with his treasure, or boast about the victory—this was not the Beowulf that defeated Grendel, or Grendel’s Mother—No this was a man transformed through the humility that often comes with death, that in which Hrothgar knowingly

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