Is Beowulf Foolish Or Foolish

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Sometimes, we can’t help but lose our senses in certain situations. When our hearts overpower our brains, the outcome may be a bruise or a burial. But who’s to say what is foolish or courageous? These themes are found in Beowulf, an epic poem passed down by Anglo-Saxon storytellers known as scops. The story revolves around a great Swedish hero who came to prominence by putting an end to the destruction of his land and people which was brought on by vicious monsters. He was one of the best warriors of his land and eventually took on the role of a king due to his victories against his people’s worst enemies, taking many of them out weaponless. Although this great warrior, Beowulf, grew older and weaker and therefore was not so capable of defeating…show more content…
Whether or not Beowulf was foolish to fight this monster has an obvious answer; it was not foolish, for it was his duty and he was prepared for any outcome of the battle. Beowulf was a king, and fighting the enemy was just one of his jobs, so his final battle was not foolish at all. In Anglo-Saxon times, it was expected of kings to provide for and protect their people. David Ross from Britain Express writes about the…show more content…
Upon entering its lair, Beowulf stood before his men and gave a speech, telling them of his plan. He said, “I feel no shame, with shield and sword and armor, against this monster: When he comes to me I mean to stand, not run from his shooting flames, stand till fate decides which of us wins.” (Beowulf 673-7). What Beowulf wants his men to know about his plan is that there will be weapons and armor there to protect him and he will fight for as long as he can. He is aware of the dragon’s strength - much more than his own - and doesn’t feel embarrassed of breaking his weaponless streak. There’s an appreciation for his tools, as they allowed Beowulf to battle just a bit longer and kill the dragon rather than going in defenseless. To charge into the lair defenseless, while knowing the dragon’s capabilities, would be more foolish than anything. Supplying himself with weapons and armor was a logical thing to do in Beowulf’s situation because it gave aid to his victory, even though his fate said otherwise. As Beowulf lay in the dragon’s lair with death approaching, he breathed his last words to his best warrior, Wiglaf: “I sold my life for this treasure, and I sold it well.” (Beowulf 806-7). Beowulf had risked his life for the reward - the defeat of the dragon, the treasures and happiness of his people, his victory - and he knew the risks before

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