Christopher Reeve (AKA the 1978 superman) said that, “A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles”. Both Beowulf and Modern day heroes are similar in that way in that they fight for the common good of people. That quote from Christopher Reeves on what a modern day hero is, also applies to the epic hero qualities that Beowulf has. Similarly Beowulf and a modern day hero defeat an evil so that good can prevail. Some examples are, Beowulf Slaying Grendel and Grendel's mother to save the land of the Danes, and soldiers fighting enemies that threaten the lives of a country, and police officers putting criminals behind bars.
Beowulf gave the ultimate sacrifice to save his people. The story of Beowulf isn’t just any ordinary story, but a story that has been told for centuries. A story of a hero who’s legacy has been told for so long. Beowulf’s life shows the characteristics of a true epic hero. He showed bravery, he used his strength against his enemies and in the end gave the ultimate sacrifice for his people.
Beowulf is an Anglo-Saxon epic about a great warrior who values the Anglo-Saxon ideas of loyalty, personal indebtedness, fame, fate, and heroism. The epic is named after, and centered on, Beowulf and his quests; however, several other characters also reflect Anglo-Saxon values throughout the story. For example, King Hrothgar built “the best/ Of all mead-halls” (ll.145-146) so that his “men lived happy” (l. 15). Hrothgar built the mead-hall because he was indebted to his men who served and protected him. Meanwhile, Beowulf was indebted to Hrothgar because Hrothgar once defended Beowulf’s family.
During these time periods, a hero was usually a great a warrior who sacrificed oneself to protect their king and kingdom. In addition, culture, religion, chivalry, and traditions played a vital role in the work of these early heroes. This was seen numerous times in Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, where both characters frequently prayed and followed the Code of Chivalry. In contrast, a hero today would portray few— or none— cultural or religious elements. Usually, present-day heroes would acquire the label by depicting some sort of supernatural, phenomenal, or superhuman trait that a normal person would not obtain.
Beowulf is described as: “Dripped with his enemies blood”. Iron Man has a lot of courage because he defends his country without any obligations. Iron Man said: “I still love my country, Nick and I fight for it… in my own way” (Iron Man). He fights with his intelligence, not his muscles. They are considered as heroes because they are so courageous.
The early English warriors held a certain set of virtues. Throughout Beowulf, these Anglo-Saxon virtues are clearly displayed by the protagonist. Beowulf most exemplifies the values of bravery, prowess in battle, and boasting at the table. One of the most dominate virtues Beowulf has is bravery. Beowulf claims before each battle that he will either win or die trying.
To them, power is everything and for one person to attain so much power, one must become a hero and perform heroic deeds. An Anglo-Saxon hero is perfectly portrayed by Beowulf who contains values of Anglo-Saxons like bravery, loyalty, honor and the willingness to risk his life for the greater good of his people. The latter is primarily why he gains the trust of his people which is why he claims the title of King and therefore gets hold of power. While Beowulf is the symbol and representation of heroes in Anglo Saxons, we have multiple personalities who we consider as heroes. People who work, people who dream, people who act.
They are many ways to define an a epic hero. An epic hero has characteristic like significant and glorified, is ethical and morally upright, has superior strength, intelligence, and or courage, is a strong and responsible leader and much more. These characteristics define two men who are Hector and Achilles. The two men are example of an epic hero. The better epic hero is hector because he had significant and glorified by the people.
Beowulf: The heroic traits development It is proven that people look up to others as heroes because it is in the human nature, but what makes a hero? The qualities of a hero consist of excellence and courage used for the greater good. In the story of Beowulf, that took place in the Anglo-Saxon Culture, Beowulf uses these heroic traits to save the Danes from a beast named Grendel, as it had been bothering the Danes for a long time. In the modern age, heroes like Malala Yousafzai are displaying the same traits that were displayed in the Anglo-Saxon culture by heroes like Beowulf, but as the times are changing, the qualities of a hero are manifested differently. Firstly, Beowulf used his physical excellence to help the Danes from the monsters haunting them.