Why Beowulf Is The Epitome Of An Epic Hero

1556 Words7 Pages
Doyoung Choi
Mrs. Deetlefs
Brit Lit. C block
14th Nov 2014

In the Anglo Saxon epic poem, Beowulf is the epitome of any epic hero. Write an essay in which you consider how he fulfills the requirements of an epic hero. To receive full credit, you must provide specific concrete details from Beowulf (with line umbers cited) to illustrate the points you are making.

Good Ole’ Epic Uncle, Beowulf

“When your time comes to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home,” said Tecumseh. We have heroes in our lives everyday, from a man killing a mosquito,
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Grendel first brought chaos to the society. Since Grendel was a larger than life villain, normal people were not able to defeat Grendel. Beowulf came into rescue and the honor was his. Honor is another heroic characteristics that Beowulf has. Beowulf demonstrates his honor by showing a sense of integrity in his actions. Beowulf’s decision of going to the land of the Danes and killing Grendel did not result from money, but because he wanted to help the Geats. Beowulf did this because he was successful in past deeds as mentioned in line 321-322. “They had in remembrance my courage and might. Many had seen me come safe from the conflict.” (lines 321-322) Beowulf’s generous action’s earned him a name of “the mighty protector of men.” (Line 366). We can see that as Beowulf continued his benevolence, people began to rely on him more. “Save us, once more, and again twisted gold, heaped-up ancient treasure, will reward you for the battle you win”. Since Beowulf was a larger than life hero, he was the only one who could save the townspeople. He was the one who ““ended the grief, the sorrow, the suffering// forced on Hrothgar’s helpless people.” People told Beowulf that Beowulf would get reward for his actions, but Beowulf did not do these heroic actions because he wanted reward. Beowulf is a hero; (pattern 1.a) therefore he has a responsibility for the peace of the world, which connects with his nobility too. Through the character, Beowulf, represented as the iconic representation of a hero, the text explicitly states that the strive for justice and peace were primary qualities in Anglo Saxon culture. Moreover, with the addition of the most horrible element, Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and the dragon, who are guilty of all kinds of heinous deeds, Beowulf becomes a true Anglo Saxon hero; (pattern 1) a hero who does not know fear death, who seeks to bring peace
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