Beowulf: An Epic Poem Analysis

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Beowulf is an epic poem believed to be written around 1000 A.D. by an unknown author. This work was translated from Old English to be read today as a famous work. In this poem, the protagonist, Beowulf, is faced with a challenge upon arriving in Denmark. Grendel, a huge monster, is terrorizing the land and Beowulf agrees to kill him. After he defeats Grendel, Grendel 's mother seeks revenge and the hero must dive into the depths of the lake where his mother resides. Beowulf narrowly escapes capture, kills Grendel 's mother, then returns home to Geatland. After many years the ruler of these people, Beowulf’s uncle, dies and Beowulf takes over as king. In his old age, a dragon begins to terrorize his people because his treasure was stolen from …show more content…
In the first stage of the monomyth that Beowulf begins, he receives “some information that acts as a call to journey into the unknown” (“What Makes a Hero?” 1). Beowulf hears that Hrothgar, King of the Danes, needs help defeating Grendel, who is terrorizing his people. He sets off on his journey with 12 brave men to kill this demon creature. This first stage is defined as the “Call to Adventure” by Joseph Campbell. The next step, “Meeting the Mentor,” is less obvious on Beowulf 's journey. He does not have a clear mentor, although it can be argued that his mentor appears before his journey begins when Hrethel, Beowulf’s grandfather takes him in after his son, Beowulf 's father died, and teaches him to be brave and strong. The article “What Makes a Hero?” explains that the mentor will present the hero with something that will aid him throughout his quest, and Hrethel indirectly provides Beowulf with the strength he needs to defeat each enemy he encounters (1). “Crossing the Threshold” is the point in the story in which the hero finally crosses into the field of adventure. Beowulf achieves this third stage by landing in Denmark and telling King Hrothgar he would kill

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