Grendel Vs Beowulf Essay

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What do all great works of literature have in common? All impressive literary works have hugely contrasting alienated characters, usually portrayed by the villains, and heroic characters. These two distinct characters may not get along well, but they both work together to highlight the underlying themes woven in the story. Alienated characters reveal the things a society values and desires by embodying characteristics that go against these wants. On the other hand, heroic characters highlight these morals and aspirations by exemplifying them. In the epic poem Beowulf passed on by the Anglo-Saxons, the alienated character of Grendel and the heroic character of Beowulf underscore the values, assumptions, and morals of the Anglo-Saxon culture. …show more content…

Not surprisingly, in the poem Beowulf, the characters of Grendel and Beowulf showed the significant role of religion. Biblical allusions were scattered throughout the poem. The alienated character Grendel was a descendant “of Cain (who was) punished forever for the crime of Abel’s death.” Due to their blood connection to Cain, Grendel’s parents were “murderous creatures banished by God.” God has exiled all monsters; shunned them away from the prosperous lives of humans. This made Grendel an outcast to the society of God worshipers. Unlike the Germanic tribes that roamed the earth above him, Grendel lived with the sole purpose of “opposing the Lord’s Will, and again and again defeated.” Meanwhile, as he was born human, the heroic character Beowulf was considered to be a descendant of the Lord. He was also a firm follower of God, always believing in His mysterious ways. Beowulf’s devotion and fate to the Lord above was especially evident when he believed that God was the one who showed him the sword made by the Giants, which he used to defeat Grendel’s mother. The portrayal of someone who constantly defied the will of God by the alienated character Grendel and the embodiment of the heroic character Beowulf as someone who greatly admired the Lord show the value of practicing religion in the Anglo-Saxon

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