Grendel Character Analysis

641 Words3 Pages
In the novel “Grendel” by John Gardner, Grendel’s self image changes throughout the course of the book. In the beginning of the novel, Grendel believes that he himself only exists. He encounters some issues which make him think that way. There was nobody there to help him, but as soon as he gets untrapped in the tree, he begins to develop. There are also three characters that effect Grendel’s self image which are The Dragon, The Shaper, and Grendel’s mother.These characters had a huge effect on Grendel’s personality that made Grendel think differently. At the start of the novel, Grendel was alone with the support of nobody which made him decide that he alone existed. There was nobody there to help him out, which caused him to think this…show more content…
One of the characters is Grendel’s mother. Grendel’s mother effect upon Grendel’s personality was not telling him anything of what Grendel would question her. This made Grendel come to the world without him knowing absolutely anything. For instance, Gardner shows this when he says, “Why are we here?... Why do we stand this putrid, stinking hole?... Don’t ask!” (Gardner 11). This shows how Grendel would question his mother and he would never get an answer back from her. This leads Grendel to not know things about the world. Another character that had a huge effect upon Grendel’s self image was the dragon. The dragon was the one that cared for Grendel throughout the novel. In the novel it says, “ I discovered that the dragon had put a charm on me: no weapon could cut me,” ( Gardner 75). This is a huge effect on Grendel because he could enter the mead hall without getting harmed. The final character that effects upon Grendel’s personality is The Shaper. The Shaper frustrates Grendel with the lies of words put into his songs. The shaper is also a huge impact on Grendel’s personality because it makes him have hatred towards him and his men that follow Shaper. For instance it says , “ And the words stitched together out of ancient songs, the scenes interwoven out of dreary tales, made a vision without seams, an image of himself yet not-himself…” (Gardner 49). This shows the frustration of Grendel
Open Document