A Comparison Of Heroes In Sir Gawain And Beowulf

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Throughout time, the meaning of the word “hero” has changed throughout the world. Everyone has their own perspective of what qualities and characteristics “heroes” should have. In today’s modern world, we hear the word “hero” used constantly in tabloids, on the news, or in plain conversation. What exactly is a hero? Who, or what, can be classified as heroic? Many people would give an example of a super hero. Super heroes are different; a “super hero” is a “benevolent fictional character with superhuman powers, such as Superman”. I always preferred Batman and Iron Man over the rest of the superheroes due to the fact that they are regular people. They don’t need any special powers to fit into the same category as the super heroes that do. A hero by definition is “a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.” That is a great definition for books and intellectual minds, but to the average person, a hero is much more. …show more content…

These heroes are similar because they both embark on a quest to defend their kingdom against an enemy. Both heroes prove themselves noble in nature, honoring their commitments to their kings. Both possess great strength, both keep their vows, battle on behalf of another, and have a sense of justice. The same could be said about our more modern heroes - firefighters, for example. However, there are also differences between the Beowulf and Sir Gawain. Most important is that Beowulf, as part of the pagan history of Britain, believes in Fate: "if ever the end of ills is fated,” (Murphy, line 280) “heroes such as the hest of fate,” (299), “Forced of fate, he shall find his way,” (1005). Sir Gawain has Christian beliefs and is under the chivalrous code of a knight. Beowulf and Sir Gawain are clearly honorable heroes, and the best warriors of their time. However, this make it difficult to compare them to heroes of a more modern

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