Beowulf, By Seamus Heaney

930 WordsMar 22, 20164 Pages
Beowulf is an epic poem written 1000 to 1300 years ago in Old English and translated by Seamus Heaney into Modern English. Beowulf is a significant piece of literature art work not only because it is one of the earliest known works, but also because it reflects and represents the authors, the Anglo-Saxons’ culture and values. At first, this story was passed around orally, from one person to another. Then, later on, the Anglo-Saxons wrote the entire story down into a manuscript. As well as the Anglo-Saxons loved their stories, they loved to boast, too. Boasting wasn’t an arrogant thing to do in their society, instead, it was socially acceptable, or even essential in one’s life. The Anglo-Saxons loved telling stories and boasting; they also liked material things such as gold swords and silver shields. Those were the rewards a soldier receives from their king, which represents their qualities and achievements. Beowulf reveals the Anglo-Saxons’ values in many parts of the poem. Stories appeared the most frequently in Beowulf. The first 64 lines of Beowulf is a story about the old king Shield Sheafson, “So. The Spear-Danes in days gone by / and the kings who ruled them had courage and greatness. / We have heard of those princes’ heroic campaigns. ”(1-3), this already proves the importance of stories to the Anglo-Saxons. Stories were mostly what the Anglo-Saxons did for entertainment. People would gather around in a hall, with food and their drinks, and they would begin to
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