Beowulf is a classic tale of a hero who undergoes certain trials and tribulations and proves his bravery. However when one glances under the surface, it is clear that the story is about so much more. Over the course of the poem Beowulf has to learn to balance two opposing sides of his personality-his monstrous, angry, berserker-like side with more restrained and civilized character. In Germanic culture in general, a dichotomy lies between the reverence of famous berserkers, who when enraged become the most fearsome of warriors, and the values of self-restraint placed on people, specifically in the feasting setting. Beowulf is all about the navigation of that tight line of cultural tension between the two options.
The term heroism has continued to change through the span of time. In “Beowulf”, heroism is defined as loyalty, honor, and bravery. In The Things They Carried, a hero is detailed in conquering fears. Jim Withers is a ordinary doctor that seeks to see happiness in others. Heroism transformed strikingly from 700 A.D, to the 1900s, and now to modern times. In today’s society, any ordinary person can be defined as a hero. Centuries ago, heroes had to be atrocious, but now heroes are characterized as everyday
Beowulf, the epic tale of a Danish society plagued by evil beasts, reveals many thought-provoking and admirable character traits of the main character and hero, Beowulf. Firstly, he shows chivalry through his interactions and actions towards the king of Heorot, showing him the respect and honor he deserved. Secondly, he demonstrates bravery in all battles above and beyond the standard of the times and the standard of his fellow fighters. He owes his bravery in part to his seemingly immeasurable strength, having more power in each fist than that of thirty men. Lastly, he demonstrates a trait that applies to people for his time and ours, pride. Pride plagued his times, due to warriors’ great deeds, but it haunts modern times as well. The liberator of Heorot and the champion of the tale, Beowulf, demonstrates three admirable and relevant character traits, chivalry, bravery and pride.
The epic poem “Beowulf”, translated by Burton Raffel, focuses on a hero by the name of Beowulf who goes on a quest to rescue King Hrothgar and his people from an egregious monster by the name of Grendel. This Anglo-Saxon tale gives insight into the values and beliefs of the people from whom the story originated. Their war-centered ideology and views on loyalty and courage were the principles that the Anglo-Saxon culture was founded upon. While warfare was a focal point in their lifestyle, it was far from a savage, barbaric state of fighting. Honor and prestige were bestowed upon those who died during battle and selflessness for fellow warriors was a fundamental belief. Boasting and self-possession were another common custom of the Anglo-Saxons. (“Anglo-Saxon Warfare Group”). Beowulf represents a quintessential Anglo-Saxon hero through his confident poise, his willingness for self-sacrifice, and his tenacity through near-impossible odds.
UThe Anglo-Saxons were a tribe of people who lived in Great Britain during the 5th century. They were warriors who had traveled all the way from northern Germany and southern Scandinavia. The Anglo-Saxon people are very well known today despite not having been around for the several, several centuries. Their people led to the spread of Christianity through eastern Europe and the establishment of seven major kingdoms. They are also well known for the code of Honor, as the Anglo-Saxons had many values that their soldiers must live by. In Beowulf, an English epic poem that tells of the tell of the incredible warrior Beowulf, Anglo-Saxons values of the time period are displayed. Loyalty, bravery, and honesty are three of the most important values
Every past and modern culture over the course of history, has its hero’s. A hero is a person or figure that others look up to and use as forms of protection. Many cherish the hero’s, they make up who we are today. The Anglo-Saxon hero, Beowulf, and the postmodern hero/hero’s, the soldiers, both show the traits of bravery, selflessness, and loyalty.
The concept of a hero is prevalent through all generations because it presents a template for ethics and behavior. Beowulf is a pivotal epic told by poets throughout early european society and mirrors the manly nature of their ideal hero. The patriarchal values of the Anglo-Saxons are displayed through the epic Beowulf. The characters’ loyalty to their leaders as well as their conventional sense of masculinity indicate that the values of a society determine the values of an individual.
Literature has maintained a strong influence on society and its perceptions of heroes for centuries. In consequence, the time period in which a literary work is written reveals much about that society’s ideal. For example, the Anglo-Saxon epic, Beowulf, translated by Seamus Heaney, illustrates the deeds of a heroic knight and reflects the values of his community. Throughout the poem, Beowulf displays commendable behavior by saving another kingdom, defeating three villains, and maintaining allegiance to the lord and his people. Even though a millennium has passed since the release of this epic, heroes today display characteristics similar to those of Beowulf. Yusra Mardini, for instance, is a Syrian teenager who, while escaping her war-torn
The Anglo - Saxon Culture valued war, loyalty, honor, and riches. The American values are not the same as the Anglo - Saxon values. The Modern day values focus more on religion and equality.
In conclusion, Beowulf would be considered a great warrior, but not a hero. Although Beowulf accomplished many heroic deeds he never did any of them for the right reasons. Therefore, Beowulf is not a hero, but only a warrior who values renown and rewards. From all this, we know that the perception of a hero from Beowulf’s time differs from our perception today. As we feel that the intentions define a hero while in Beowulf’s time the reputation and accomplishments are what makes a
The epic poem Beowulf is a classic tale of good versus evil. Good, as shown in the story, is any action that fights evil and defends the community and the people of it. The evil intent of Grendel, the story’s antagonist and cannibalistic murderer, who is depicted as a “fiend out of hell” (99), is strongly countered by the heroic actions of the stories main protagonist, Beowulf. The noble King Hrothgar is a role model for young Beowulf at the beginning of the epic, displaying acts of charity and wisdom throughout his life. As he ages, Beowulf defends his people with the same intent as the former king and displays the same heroism that is apparent in the United States military. Heorot, a dining hall that provides Hrothgar’s people place
Beowulf is an archetypal character within a legendary piece of text. He embodies the conglomerate of many Anglo Saxon values expressed throughout his heroic journey. Contrived by the mighty Northern Anglo Saxons, Beowulf is the manifestation of the Anglo Saxon ideals. This work of art helps us identify and analyze Beowulf’s ideals in a way that lets us deduce the values of the Anglo Saxon society. Examination of this poem lets us familiarize ourselves about a society obsessed with religion, vengeance and war-lust beings. They idolized the warrior code, an abundance of warrior like traits that portrayed you as noble as can be, a fundamental aspect of life for the Anglo Saxons. So let us leap into the fabric of time and take a peek into the Anglo Saxon civilization.
Beowulf is a story of a hero who seems to defy false hope. A hero is a person of distinguished courage who has admirable qualities/abilities, which are exemplified through their acts. Beowulf illustrates the idea that humans can exceed the norm and combat with human evil and fears. There are three virtues that Beowulf personified: loyalty, courage and faith.
Beowulf was honorable throughout this epic story. Beowulf was strong, smart, one whom the town was looked up to. When he killed Grendal, the townsfolk were happy and relieved.
Actor Anson Mount once made an insightful observation, “all of us have a hero and a villain in us.” This is something that has been confirmed over time, across cultures, and is also corroborated in famous literary works such as Seamus Heaney’s Beowulf and William Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Key characters in these epics often rose to the occasion and made a positive impact on the society with their exceptional bravery, selflessness and moral courage. There were also instances where the same characters didn’t exercise the best judgment. Although Beowulf had many more heroic moments than Macbeth and Macduff, each of them had their virtues and flaws that surfaced at different times and under different circumstances,