Why Is Wealth Important In Beowulf

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When someone gives their friend a birthday present, it’s clear to see that the relationship between the two of them is a positive one, likewise, if one person were to steal from another, the relationship between the two is negative. Relationships among people can be seen through the exchange of wealth. In Beowulf, wealth plays a similar role as it does in modern society. Therefore, In Beowulf, wealth represents alliances among people because when wealth is acquired in a respectable way, relationships among them are positive, but when it is stolen, the relationships aren’t friendly and and even hostile.
The Anglo-Saxon kings in Beowulf are very generous with their wealth to those who have served them. Consequently this exchange of wealth shows a positive relationship among the kings and their subjects. For example, Hrothgar gives Beowulf gifts in order to thank him for defeating both Grendel and Grendel’s mother: “Then Halfdane’s son presented Beowulf with a gold standard as a victory gift, an embroidered banner; also brest-mail and a helmet; and a sword carried high, that was both precious object and token of honour.” (1019-1023). Beowulf has helped Hrothgar by slaying the monsters that were attacking his tribe and killing his people. Also, after Beowulf kills Grendel’s mother, Hrothgar gives him even more gifts. Hrothgar gave Beowulf these gifts and because Beowulf’s riches were acquired in a respectable way the relationship
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After Beowulf returns from the land of the Danes, he and the king of Geatland have dinner and Beowulf tells his story of how he defeated Grendel. During this feast, Beowulf shares what he thinks will happen if Freawaru (Hrothgar’s daughter) were to be married off to the Heathobards. Beowulf does not think this is a good idea because he believes that the reception will end in
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