43). This quote displays us that not only did Beowulf defeat Grendel, but he defeated Grendel with just his bare hands. This example confirms the characteristic of how Beowulf is an epic hero by completing a great deed with great strength and courage. Another characteristic someone may see in Beowulf, is him being a great warrior. Before a hero completes a journey in his epic, he must establishes his name another way.
He had help by means of his followers and the princess. Nothing like William Wallace, Gilgamesh fought the monster by himself. Gilgamesh fought to save his friend and became famous for that. Their challenges were successful because they meet their goals. William Wallace was wrath at the British for killing his wife.
Beowulf approaches each of these three battles in a different way and with a different strategy in mind. He embodied courage, strength, and loyalty; which proved to be of great aid in his battles and quest for justice. In Beowulf’s first battle against an enemy, Grendel, a monster threatening the Dane’s at night. Grendel appears threatening, but Beowulf is not swayed. That night, he watches as his enemy kills one of his men, and as Grendel reaches for Beowulf, Beowulf rips off his arm.
This poem follows the life of Beowulf from that of a young and loyal Dane who becomes a great respected king and dies proudly, as a warrior. The warrior culture at this time reflects the values of the society of the 6th century. The Danes and Geats showed their loyalty to their leader by fighting for him, even to the death. The leader would then give them something in return like treasure or property for their deeds or achievements, which helped to improve their reputations. In regard to these important cultural values of that time, four of these values recur throughout this legendary poem: loyalty, violence, celebration and revenge.
Beowulf is defined as a hero by his bravery to set out and defeat a monster that has been invincible to Hrothgar’s men. He was well respected because his confidence was evident as he trusted his destiny to fate. Fate is a reoccurring theme in heroism; it is a supernatural aspect that allows a hero to conquer a quest fearlessly. Beowulf fought Grendel without weapons and was sure his strength, experience, and belief in fate would allow him to triumph over the antagonist that terrorized Herot Hall. His dependence on fate benefitted him as he defeated both Grendel and Grendel’s mother.
Alas! The greatest leader of the Geats was finally defeated. I give to you, Beowulf; protector of the weak, envy of men and slayer of monsters. This is not a man, but a hero who lived his life in glory. Strong, noble, daring, loyal, courageous, confident; these are all traits that Beowulf, The Beowulf, possessed and used to command everything about him.
Could his journey be to find himself? He could stray away from his self-conscious ways and become the ultimate ‘man’. Bragging aside, Beowulf is undoubtedly brave. When Beowulf sets out to kill Grendel’s mother he states that if his sword fails, his physical strength will protect him instead. Beowulf is in search of fame; he gains it truthfully by battling with menaces to society and does not lie or manipulate to achieve this fame.
Fifty years ahead and now King Beowulf faced a task of killing a dragon. He would “[fight] with fate against him” (724) seeing as his “the ancient blade broke” (727) while striking the dragon’s side. The beloved king would eventually die with “None of his comrades\Came to help him” (745-746) and his “Followers… ran for their lives…” (745-748). King Arthur’s story is also an epic poem which speaks about an honorable leader who will do anything to defend his people. Arthur went off to battle, with his comrades at his side the whole time and is able to defeat his foe, but doing so left him fatally injured, until he is eventually killed.
Beowulf is portrayed, as per the author's intentions, as the archetypal hero in order to develop the theme of the story: With God's grace, a hero is able to defeat evil. Beowulf is shown to be blessed with skills beyond that of an ordinary man, and uses his capabilities and faith in God to take him to Herot and destroy the sinister Grendel. When Beowulf is first introduced, it is declared from the outset that he is "greater and stronger than anyone anywhere in this world." The story continues on to talk of how Hrothgar, King of the Danes, is troubled by a monster, Grendel, who torments his mead hall nightly, slaughtering his soldiers and eating them. With all this in mind, Beowulf boards his ship along with fourteen other men and sets sail for Denmark, hoping to purge Grendel from Herot.
During his journey he fights three monsters; Grendel, Grendels mother, and a fire-breathing dragon. Beowulf was a powerful warrior during his younger life and an intelligent king during his older years. In the poem the author mentions many Anglo-Saxon ideals. Anglo- Saxons valued courage, believed in many courageous aspects of life and Beowulf demonstrates all of the qualities of a courageous, powerful, and a never forgotten warrior. In the epic poem, the Anglo-Saxons value strength as a characteristic of a superior and great warrior.