An Epic Hero is a character who’s legendary or heroic actions are central to his culture, race or nation. Beowulf and Odysseus both share some of the seven hero traits; for example being superhuman, fighting monsters and going on a quest. They do not exhibit the exact same traits or in the same way, for example the intervention of the divine world, but they both demonstrate the qualities of an Epic Hero. Both Beowulf and Odysseus prove they are superhuman. Beowulf is able to take down Grendel and Grendel’s mother.
As an underdog, no matter how hard life hits you, you will find your own motivation and keep going. You show life not only how hard you can hit it back, but that you can overcome anything. In chapter 1 of Allison Scott and George Goethals’ Heroes: What They Do and Why We Need Them, they explain why it is necessary to have a hero within a story. These writers state, “One reason is that the creators of fiction purposely construct characters who perfectly embody classic heroic stories or narratives. […] These make-believe individuals are thus crafted to be hero prototypes—individuals possessing powerful heroic qualities that we easily recognize and admire” (Scott 32).
When the speaker discusses how Beowulf “was the mightiest man on earth, high-born and powerful,” and that “there was no one like him,” further proves that his identity as the strongest man on earth, traces back to the ruggedness and power-driven his society seems to be. In addition, Beowulf’s value of ambition can be seen when the speaker says, “He announced his plan: to sail the swan’s road and search out that king…” This line adds teh effect that he knows what he wants to do and how he plans to accomplish it. While other heroes in stories begin a quest with no real plan, this only creates more chaos for those type of characters. Therefore, Beowulf’s preparedness clearly reflects his value of ambition. One could also argue that saving “famous prince who needed defenders” further emphasizes Beowulf’s heroic character and pride.
Throughout the story of Beowulf and the movie Thor, there are many similarities; from the enemies they meet, the characteristics of the two warriors, and the things they have conquered. Both Thor and Beowulf have lots of pride. Thor is known as someone powerful and brave in Asgard, he has many enemies. Beowulf is known as a courageous warrior who can conquer any enemy, and he also has different enemies that he must defeat throughout the story. Both of the brave warriors come to figure out what their destiny must be, they are destined for greatness but they must go through great storms to achieve it.
He is the archetypal hero. And not only does he fight for good, but he represents it as well. For Beowulf to signify good there must be a contrasting evil to complete the balance. Beowulf, who comes to help the Danes fight the dreaded Grendal. Beowulf is a classic epic hero and is honored by being passed down in the story.
In the epic poem, Beowulf, the central character Beowulf demonstrates qualities of a hero, such as bravery, loyalty, and strength. Throughout the text, Beowulf is acknowledged for his heroic deeds and great defeats. He takes on challenges and sacrifices himself to protect his people. In traditional oral poetry, a theme is “a group of ideas regularly used in telling a tale in a formulaic style of a traditional song” (Lord, Singer,68). The theme of battle between Beowulf and Grendel shows Beowulf’s courage, as he relies on God and puts his life on the line to defeat Grendel for the greater good.
This scene in the story represents the Magic Weapon archetype. Beowulf uses the sword to fulfill his second task of the story, which essentially saves his life but would have been useless if not for his persistence and strength. Additionally, character archetypes are also very present in Beowulf. The archetypes present help depict what kind of character Beowulf is, and establish his leadership skills over his men. In the story, Beowulf is a Hero, and he is accompanied by his Loyal Retainers, who will do anything to protect Beowulf and stay by his side in
In the poem, it is evident that boasting is a way of asserting power and dominance on others in Beowulf’s society. In a way, boasting becomes essential to warriors in combat. This is exemplified when Beowulf boasts about his father’s prestige. He announces to the Danes that he is the son of Ecgtheow, a noble warrior-lord (Page 21). Although the Scyldings may not know who Ecgtheow is, they are still influenced by the fact that Beowulf is a son of some powerful and famous man.
Every culture has rules and customs written in stone, in which they describe to be the perfect human being. This person is usually made into a hero and with all these perfect traits comes a perfect story to be told, it is usually told as an epic. There is always something that separates this character from the rest, from extraordinary strength to humble leadership. According to T. Mercadal, “The hero archetype is an ideal person (usually male) who possesses virtues and outstanding traits meant to be admired and imitated, such as courage, leadership, noble sentiments, self-sacrifice, bravery, and strength.” This assertion portrays the main characteristics of the Germanic heroic Code that are presented throughout the poem. The qualities of the Anglo-Saxon hero are well established by Beowulf's actions.
The hero's journey is a popular form of writing that involves a hero who embarks on an adventure, quest, or journey where in the climax they win a victory, then comes home transformed or changed. The book, “The Odyssey” is a prodigious example of the hero's journey. Odysseus is the hero of “The Odyssey”. All heroes in a hero's journey display particular traits. Odysseus displays perseverance and fortitude, two specific characteristics that all heroes should display.