Beowulf And Achilles Comparison

470 Words2 Pages
Hayleigh Gann
Mrs. DeSilva
English 12
23 September 2015
Comparison Essay
“Beowulf” was written around the 750 B.C. The Author of the epic poem is unknown. “Beowulf” is about a warrior who lives among the Geats. The great hero goes to help out the Danes with their common enemy, Grendel. A man named Homer in 700 B.C wrote “The Iliad”. The story is about the warrior known as Achilles, who was a brave, but selfish man. He tries to avenge his dear friend Patroclus by killing the man who ended his life. Although Beowulf and Achilles are both considered epic hero’s they come from different cultures and have complete opposite outlooks on life.
There are a couple of features of Beowulf's characterization that reflect what was considered important
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He started fights and ended lives for his own satisfaction and revenge. Achilles is considered an epic hero for being a great leader and having courage to stand up for what he wanted. A great example of this in “The Iliad” is during the fight between Hector, Patroclus’ killer, and Achilles. Hector is begging Achilles to give his body back to his people, after Achilles is done with him and he replies “Beg me no beggary by soul or parents, whining dog! Would God my passion drove me to slaughter you and eat you raw, you’ve caused such agony to me! (lines 190-194)”.
Both Achilles and Beowulf were very set towards getting glory. Achilles' only reason for going to Troy is to enhance his own glory. Beowulf is not as direct about this, but the value of glory and fame in his society suggests that glory was very important for him as well. Beowulf is more selfless, in that he is also helping out his own kingdom. Achilles does not care much about the Greeks. Both men are were not kings when they preformed the acts that they are most famous for, although they later on become Kings. “Beowulf” and “The Iliad” show that all epic heroes are not the same. Each one has a different background, culture, and characteristics. Some have anger issues, and others can be very selfish. But one thing they all have in common is that they fight for what they want, and are the bravest of the
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