The story of Beowulf depicts an invincible character who slowly reveals his mortality as the tale progresses. At the beginning, the reader is introduced to a son of royal blood who was known for his strength and victory in battle. Other than the fame he had gained from whom he descended and the victories he had won, Beowulf was just like everyone else. He had no gift from the Anglo-Saxon Gods, nor was he granted power from a magical sword. A series of three battles allows the reader to understand things about Beowulf that reveal the mortal side of him.
He gives up on a useless weapon and attacks the terrifying monster with his bare hands. He uses his inner physical strength to defeat the dragon, with his own hands being his only aid in battle. His physical strength is described in the passage “My lord Higlac might think less of me as I let my sword go where my feet were afraid to, if I hid behind some broad linen shield. My hands alone shall fight for me.” (248-252).
Since Grendel is going to fight without the use of weapons, Beowulf creates equality and therefore earns himself even more respect by doing the same. The less confident King Arthur on the other hand fights only with weapons. Once his wounds were amended his first thought was, "I have no sword," followed by the task of finding him one. This demonstrates Arthur's relative weakness in his dependence on weapons when held in comparison to Beowulf's willingness to fight a creature greater than himself with nothing but his bare hands. It is this that I feel best illustrates Beowulf's
Beowulf and Wiglaf kill the dragon, but Beowulf dies. He dies being greedy, telling Wiglaf he wants to see the treasure and how he wants people to remember
However, this caused Beowulf to fight the dragon. Knowing he is aging, he cannot fight the dragon on his own, and decided to ask the Thanes to help him to finish his last quest. The Thanes decide to participate, but quickly leave in terror due to the dragon’s fiery breath, leaving Wiglaf at his side (Beowulf. 3066-3075). The fire he emits on Beowulf’s men is representative of the fire in hell. The slave who
The dragons solely purpose was to defend his material resource, and once he failing at that mission violence was the natural retribution. Once Beowulf learns that his house, / had been burned to a fragment (Beowulf, 2325-2326), he decides that the time has return for the defender of the Geats to face this beast. In his fight with the dragon, Beowulfs actions dwell the hands of fate, the ultimate demand of the Heroic Code. Whereas the dragon acts out of pure revenge, Beowulf seeks out the duel with the dragon so as to satisfy his destiny. The veteran king weekday down on the cliff-top...
and we went under the crag. No coward path” (Beowulf 2539 - 2541). In this scene of Beowulf, Beowulf is going to kill the dragon in his lair and everyone but one person runs off once they see the dragon.
Beowulf is the clear protagonist of the novel and an example of a “perfect” warrior from the middle ages. He has all the ideal traits that make him so distinguished and respected. An example of his loyalty was going to meat Hrothgar to fight the Grendel. He was not forced to do this but his father had an obligation to the king so Beowulf carried that forward.
These values contribute toward Beowulf's Fame and determine his decisions and actions. Sometime after Beowulf returns victorious from Denmark, his king and father figure dies in battle. The Queen, afraid her own son was not capable of protecting them from their enemies, offers the crown to Beowulf. Beowulf declines this offer. " But Beowulf refused to rule when his Lord's own son was alive."
Another one of Beowulf’s tragic flaws is his pride. He didn’t know when to stop fighting off monsters even when he was getting older. The narrator explains when Beowulf was getting ready to fight Grendel’s mother how he, “donned his war-gear, indifferent to death” (Heaney 11441). He is so prideful and boastful that he thought that he was basically immortal to death or anything that can potentially kill him. Sometimes Beowulf’s pride might be too much to
Additionally, Beowulf’s immense courage makes him fit for representing the ideal epic hero. Beowulf is brave and he does not avoid doing anything that might be dangerous or risky. Beowulf is even willing to give up his life, when he performs some of the courageous deeds. For example, when Beowulf plans to fight Grendel, he tells Hrothgar: “’the monster’s scorn of men / Is so great that he needs no weapons and fears none. / Nor will I’”
¨True heroism consists in being superior to the ills of life, in whatever shape they may challenge us to combat¨- Napoleon. Clearly, Napoleon is explaining that a hero will conquer any negative things in life that challenge them. For example, modern day superheroes always overcome their problems in life. Modern day superheroes such as Batman, Superman, and Spiderman fight the villains and grow superior to the negative aspects in their lives. Similarly, heroes in poems and books gain their heroic name by defeating the ills of life.
The authors use of the hero tradition is contradicted when we get a glimpse of Beowulf’s arrogance. During the final battle as Beowulf said his goodbyes to his followers, he humbly reassured them, “fate decides which of [them] wins,” showing now sound of arrogance (666-667). Beowulf is living up to the “hero” expectation in the citizens’ eyes; he is being selfless for this kingdom. However this role is not applicable for him just yet. His humility, that the other characterized for him, is overlooked as he states, “this dragon’s treasure, his gold and everything hidden in that tower will be mine,” showing his true intentions.
“It was cruel and slimy and its eyes shone green. A part of the night it moved through, its wicked heart was darker than the darkest place in that night. Even the moon would not look at it.” (pg. 7)that, was Grendel.