Beowulf: Heroism

958 Words4 Pages
The poem ‘Beowulf’ is an epic, and is the oldest surviving piece of English literature. The main character is a mighty warrior by the name of Beowulf. He sails across the seas to demolish a monster who’d been terrorizing the people of Denmark. He kills the monster, Grendel, but also takes up the challenges of killing Grendel’s angry mother and then a mighty dragon. The succeeds, and becomes extremely famous. In the poem Beowulf, heroism is clearly portrayed. The poem was written in pre-medieval times- a time where heroes and warriors were greatly honoured and respected. A hero is someone who selflessly puts his or her own needs aside to do what is best for others. Beowulf shows many of these heroic qualities such as: selflessness, tenacity, and fortitude. Throughout the poem, Beowulf’s selfless attidude is evident. Beowulf was Swedish, from a completely different country- he had only recently heard of the rampages of the deadly beast. Beowulf, the warrior of the Geats, “Heard of Grendel,” (Line 14) and sailed across the seas with fourteen companions to Denmark. It seems as if the decision to fight the terrorizer of the Danes wasn’t a difficult one to make- he simply embarked on the journey without much ado. He fearlessly arrives at Heorot and selflessly fights the great monster Grendel. Despite Beowulf’s lack of personal connections with Heorot, he still bravely defended the people and the great hall of Hrothgar. Grendel’s attacks were not Beowulf’s problem, but he willingly came to demolish the monster. The King of the Danes was dejected until Beowulf arrived, (Line 18) showing that Beowulf selflessly gave himself as a symbol of hope to the King and the people. Beowulf demonstrates fortitude when another monster, Grendel’s mother, attacks Heorot and kills Hrothgar’s friend. Instead of leaving her be and simply thinking that he had helped enough by

More about Beowulf: Heroism

Open Document