Briana McCants Honors English IV Mrs. Kimberly Joyner December 12, 2015 Beowulf, The Epic Hero In Anglo Saxon times, Beowulf is considered a well known epic hero. “Epic heroes are literary characters from ancient mythology and other stories, which were written down in the form of long, narrative epic poems. The hero is the main character, or protagonist of the poem”("Epic Hero: Definition, Characteristics & Examples."). The epic hero usually battles for accomplishments to a set of tasks to complete important goals. Beowulf is described as an epic hero because of his honor, bravery, and intelligence.
To begin, one of the many ways that Beowulf was different than Grendel is that Beowulf was brave. Every night Grendel snuck into Herot Hall to destroy King Hrothgar’s men. He did this while hiding in the shadows, sneaking around in the dead of night, and attacking while the men we asleep and at there most vulnerable. These are not the characteristics the brave, these are the characteristics of a foul, loathsome, cowardly beast. Mean while, Beowulf liked to meet a problem head on, in this case the problem was Grendel himself. Determined Beowulf sailed to Denmark to defeat Grendel, telling Hrothgar that he will take Grendel’s life with his bare hands. As told in the story, “ That mighty protector of men/ Meant to hold the monster till it’s life/ leaped out” (Raffel, 1963, l. 366-368). And when Beowulf got the chance to do just that, Grendel took the cowards road, “Grendel’s one thought
Beowulf; a man whose greatness begun when he saved an entire kingdom from the clutches of the vile monster Grendel. Beowulf was known for countlessly putting his body and his life on the line to save his people. His courage and determination is what kept his legacy alive for all of these years. Not only that, but the respect he had for the people around him made him a remembered warrior as well. That’s what I think makes a hero. Being determined to get a job done, having the courage to step in and complete that job, and having enough respect for your people to still obey their wishes despite your apparent fame. The hero I will be writing about is the fictional Marvel Comics character known as the Black Panther (real name T’Challa). He and Beowulf
So Healfdene’s son brooded continually over his sorrows; the wise men could not ward off the trouble. The strife was too great, hateful, long-lasting, that had come to the nation, cruel spirit’s envy, gigantic night-evil.(189-93) Fortunately Beowulf was ready and willing to sacrifice himself to repay the debt of Ecgtheow, Beowulf’s father, to Hrothgar. This Geat warrior possesses almost miraculous qualities: “He was the strongest of men alive in that day, mighty and noble.” Upon spotting Beowulf approaching, the sea-guard of the Danes says, “Never have I seen a greater man on earth…” King Hrothgar of the Danes says of Beowulf, “Seafarers who took gifts to the Geats say that he has the strength of 30 men in his hand grip.” Beowulf chooses to fight Grendel by himself and without shield or weapons; previously the hero slew nine sea monsters with his sword. And he is fully willing to sacrifice his very life for this: “… I alone will fulfill the wish of your people … or die in the foe’s grasp.” Beowulf consciously chooses to act in a superhuman manner: “I shall perform the deeds of a hero or I have passed my last day
A hero is not born; he is self-made with heroic qualities. What qualifies for making someone a hero? According to Merriam Webster, a hero is defined as: “ a mythological or legendary figure often of divine descent endowed with great strength or ability”. Beowulf perfectly fits that definition of a hero. In Seamus Heaney Beowulf, Beowulf has everything it takes to be known as a hero. Some of Beowulf’s vital traits as warrior includes bravery, courage, honor, incredible physical strength, and the will to serve the people for the greater good. This poem is centered around him and that is all he needs to be portrayed as the hero he is.
A hero must do many things to be allowed the title of hero. However, there are some aspects a hero should not show. If these characteristics are shown, they should not be considered a hero. One attribute a hero should not display is selfishness. In the Knight’s Tale, written by Geoffrey Chaucer, Arcite and Palamon acted selfishly. They perceived a beautiful lady. They fought for the beautiful lady. They died for the beautiful lady. Nevertheless, they acted selfishly during this gripping story. For example, they fought for Emily, the beautiful lady, because neither could live without her. Nonetheless, neither ambitious young man could bother themselves to question her on whether she wished to marry either of these headstrong knights. She may not have desired to marry either of them. Therefore, they acted selfish and do not live up to one requirement of a hero. On the contrary, Beowulf, the main protagonist in the epic poem Beowulf written by an unknown source, did not act selfishly. Throughout the poem, he risked his life to fight horrendous monsters to save the good people living in the area. These actions define Beowulf as a hero. Contrarily, Sir Gawain, who starred in the book Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, embarked on a dangerous journey. The Green Knight had tasked him to find the Green Chapel. Before finding the chapel, the tired knight came across a castle tucked away in the peaceful forest. When he asked to stay for a night, his host proposed a trade. The host would
The debate over whether or not Beowulf is a hero can be taken many ways. My thoughts are that Beowulf is a true hero. Beowulf always shows characteristics of being a hero, he is seen as
How do people perceive a hero? A person who saves millions of lives or someone who saves a cat from a tree. From little to big anyone can be considered a hero, especially a character from a story or a book. One specific character, is Beowulf from the epic poem, “Beowulf”. Beowulf is a Geat who is summoned by the king of Danes, Hrothgar, whose great mead hall, Heorot, is plagued by the monster Grendel. The battle with Grendel resulted in Grendel’s defeat. As the poem goes on, Beowulf gets involved in a battle with Grendel’s mother which he also defeats. Later in his life, Beowulf becomes king of the Geats and fights his last battle with a dragon who terrorized Beowulf’s realm. This battle resulted in the dragon’s defeat, but Beowulf was utterly wounded and later cremated. Beowulf goes through great lengths to battle these creatures, and his heroic acts lead him to becoming an epic hero. Beowulf is a hero because he posses courage/ bravery, faith, and strength.
When discussing epic heroes, some of the more prominent ones that come to mind are Beowulf (from Beowulf), Hektor (from The Iliad), and Achilleus (also from The Iliad). These are all characters from literature who have displayed a multitude of the characteristics embodied in epic heroes. Each one of these literary figures has exhibited necessary traits needed to be considered an epic hero. Whether those traits are some of the common ones such as strength, honor, loyalty, perseverance, and bravery, or some of their own such as pride, intelligence, and morality. Whatever the case, these three have undergone difficulties and shown ties to the values held by their cultures within how they deal with issues. In this essay, I will attempt to
Christopher Reeve once said “A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endures in spite of overwhelming obstacles.” In other words, a hero is a normal person who is able to be strong and persevere despite difficult obstacles preventing them. In the book, Beowulf, the
Why is beowulf a hero? He is a hero because he protects people from monsters and dragons. He will fight without weapons or with weapons. Some of the monsters he can’t fight with weapons. Beowulf is the strongest among men. Beowulf can kill monster with his bare hands.
Beowulf is a very great epic. An epic that shows how one prince can become a great king of the Geats. A great warrior like Beowulf, ready to fight and make something of his title proves how heroic he is by going to battle the monster Grendel. Grendel the lake dwelling
Beowulf is a hero in that he represents the values of courage, strength, respect, loyalty, and honor. Beowulf is willing to do whatever and whenever to protect Hrothgar and all his people.
There is no way for any individual to live forever. No matter who you are or what you have done, bodies will eventually collapse and health will eventually fail. The only way to linger beyond one’s days is to live on in the memories of those who knew you. For many this is limited to friends and family, and even then your stories may only last a few generations. To live on in the minds and hearts of society for any long period of time, one must become unforgettable. In my eyes, there are two ways to achieve this; to be so objectively good that you will be remembered or so terrible that you cannot be forgotten.