Examples Of Commitatus Code In Beowulf

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The main theme in Beowulf is the Comitatus code, which is a code that mainly revolves around loyalty, heroism, and being noble. The warriors live and would die by these rules. An example of this is when Wiglaf says he would rather die than do nothing when fighting the dragon. “As God is my witness, I would rather my body were robbed in the same burning blaze as my gold-giver’s body than go back home bearing arms.” (Heany; page 177, lines 2650-2653). Despite this, the idea of being noble at the time of Beowulf is different from what we think of now. The warriors' idea of heroism is that they should brag and show off what they have accomplished. For example, when Beowulf is talking to Unferth, he says “Lurking and stalking, but I lashed out, …show more content…

” (Heany; page 39, 560-563). In these lines, Beowulf boasts about keeping the seas safe to show how great he is. Another way people in Beowulf made themselves seem nobler was by putting others down and disregarding their accomplishments to make themselves look more heroic. This is shown in the story when Beowulf says, “Now, I cannot recall any fight you entered, Unferth.” (Heany; Page 39, Line581) Beowulf is saying that he has done all these things while Unferth has essentially done nothing important. The other main theme in Beowulf is being loyal to the people who are good to you. This idea of being faithful to the people who surround you is still somewhat believed today. An example of this is when Hrothgar says, “Never, since my hand could hold a shield Have I entrusted or given control Of the Dane’s hall to anyone but you.” (Heany; Page 45, Lines 655-657) Hrogthar is essentially saying that he trusts Beowulf more than anyone else which is why he put him on this task. This idea also carries over into another idea that a good King should shower their people with gifts. This not only makes them seem like they appreciate the warriors but it shows how wealthy the king is. The king upholds this idea when he gives Beowulf armor as a

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