Beowulf Papers

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Beowulf Papers

A hero is a man of courage and ability who is admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities. A hero is a person who does not come along very often in any time period. He is a special person, who is a step above the average person in the way that he handles any situation that may arise.

This statement is very true for the time of Anglo-Saxon culture and literature. A hero was like a god and was put on a pedestal far above the others. A hero brought peace to situations that were deemed impossible and brought joy to many people.

In the poem Beowulf, there is a great example of what a hero is about in this time. Beowulf is the great warrior of the Geats and he will do anything necessary to keep peace and to
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This is a tribute to Beowulf's special strength and ability. While the head is one of several items he carries up, "four of them had trouble carrying Grendel's head on spear-shafts to the goldhall" (Norton, 48).

What others deem impossible, a hero makes possible. There are only a few great heroes that come about in this time and Beowulf is definitely one of them. He is a great warrior and leader, a perfect description for him. Heroes only came along once in a while in this culture but it was well known when they did.

Kenning Identification

In poetry, there is often the use of many words that may seem a bit strange to the average reader. These words are often more complex than what is actually meant, but are used to enhance the reading and make it more enjoyable to the reader. Other words would make the poem less smooth, and that is why such complexity arises. These words shape a type of metaphor, which is referred to as a kenning.

A kenning is a metaphorical circumlocution, signifying a person or thing by a characteristic or quality (Skill, 10). It is used quite often in Anglo Saxon poetry and is used to great length in Beowulf. The language of Beowulf has use of four-beat alliterative line and this allows the use of a variety of kennings.

The use of kennings had such an effect on poetry that many phrases often became cliches. For example, there are many kennings

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