Beowulf Essay

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Beowulf: A Christ Figure The epic poem Beowulf presents an array of pagan influences, but Beowulf himself is frequently presented as a literary Christ-figure throughout the text. Rather than having one specific author, this poem was part of an oral tradition, and it was composed circa the eighth to tenth century. It was often told to groups of people out loud by a scop, which is someone that tells a story they have memorized. Beowulf takes place between the fourth and fifth century. During this time period, Christianization is attempted by Emperor Constantine of Rome. Since it was written about an earlier time period that was not yet Christianized, scops would begin to add Christian influences to the poem so it would be more pleasing to the audience. In the poem we see many different instances of Beowulf described as, and acting like, a savior, a purger, a cleanser, and a healer. When Beowulf hears about Grendel’s excursions in Heorot, he knows it is up to him to save the community. He gathered his soldiers and then set sea. When he arrives to the Danes he tells Hrothgar that he has heard of their struggle and he is there to fix everything. He boasts about how he has slain sea-monsters and nixies (l 374). Beowulf says, “I and my officers, we and no others, be offered the honor of purging your hall” (l 383). Much like Christ, Beowulf knows in his heart that it is hit duty to save these people, and to purge Grendel from their town. Beowulf leaves Hrothgar to find Grendel and, “As leader of twelve trailing that terror, the greatest of Geats glowered with rage when he looked on the lair where the worm lurked” (2117). Exactly like God and his twelve disciples, Beowulf has twelve soldiers with him to help him kill the monster. Many soldiers have died, but Beowulf succeeds in killing Grendel. He cleanses the town of the terrors that Grendel fell upon them day in and

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