The Wife's Lament And Beowulf Comparison

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n both the excerpt about Unferth from Beowulf and the poem “The Wife’s Lament”, the themes of betrayal and anger are shown within the stories; however, they are expressed differently. To begin with, Unferth shows his anger towards Beowulf by attempting to embarrass him in front of all the men, including King Hrothgar. For example, Unferth states “No one, neither friend nor foe, could keep you from your sad journey, when you swam out to sea… Breca outslayed you, he was stronger” (427-435). Unferth is trying to say that Beowulf is weak and can’t compete with anyone or anything. He says such things because he is madly jealous that Beowulf will fight with Grendel instead of him. On the other hand, Beowulf counteracts Unferth by staying calm, explaining …show more content…

For instance, she says that “First my lord went out away… Then I went forth a friendless exile to seek service in my sorrow’s need” (6-10). Since she felt agony, she was seeking the attention by cheating (betraying) on her King with another man’s wooing. Although these characters express similar themes/emotions, they show it in different forms. As an example, the poem about the wife isn’t written in Anglo-Saxon, while the excerpt from Beowulf is. Anglo-Saxon is a culture that has a lot of belief in fate, treasure is their success, and where loyalty to a leader is crucial. The excerpt identifies all these qualities of Anglo-Saxon because Beowulf says that “the woven war-garment, adorned with gold covered my breast... Fate will often spare an undoomed man, if his courage is good... But soon, quite soon, I shall show him the strength, the spirit and skill of the Geats" (470-471, 490-491, 518-520). The gold on his chest represents the treasure and success, he also mentions fate when he speaks, and his loyalty to King Hrothgar promising that he will defeat Grendel with his warriors. However, the poem is written first person point of view and is a lyrical

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