Foreshadowing In Beowulf

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Foreshadowing In Beowulf In the Epic poem of Beowulf, foreshadowing is of great importance throughout the poem. Before and after the heroic Geat goes into battle with Grendel’s mother (lines 1491-1516) the significance of foreshadowing is shown through the use of alliteration and imagery as it shapes Beowulf’s upcoming fate that eventually leads him to death. The first time foreshadowing is seen, is with the use of alliteration as well as imagery. It is, however, only the beginning of what’s to come of Beowulf’s fate. “Each by his head placed his polished shield/on the benches aloft/easily to be seen/were the ring-stitched mail-coat/steepling above the fray, and the stout spear-shaft” (1241-45). These lines use alliteration with the “s”…show more content…
“The Weather-Geat prince/dived into the Mere/the waves closed over the daring man/it was a day’s space before he could glimpse the ground at the bottom.” (1491-95) As Beowulf dives into the darkened depths of Grendel’s mothers’ lair, beneath a motionless lake of bloodstained water, it is seen that this scene represents the darkened imagery of the uncertain dangers lurking in this treacherous expedition. As Beowulf heads towards the depths where he will soon battle Grendel’s Mother, the darkness of the lair that he has entered symbolizes evil, and it leads to Beowulf’s confusion in this unfamiliar atmosphere, which, foreshadows the uncertainty of Beowulf’s fate against the monster. After the battle is won by the Geat warrior, the first glimmer of light is seen and the monsters lair is illuminated more thoroughly. “Light glowed out and illuminated the chamber/with a clearness such as the candle of heaven/sheds the sky.” (1569-71). This light signifies salvation and that hell has been removed of its evil and holiness has been restored. Furthermore, it seems clear that by the time Beowulf gets back onto land, he has experienced a sort of rebirth. But this doesn’t last too long, as the son of Healfdene gives Beowulf a…show more content…
The son of Healfdene starts off his speech by thanking Beowulf. “Beowulf my friend/your name shall resound in the nations/that are farthest away.” (1702-04) From the beginning of this speech it is foreshadowed that good will come of Beowulf’s future as he has not only proven himself once in the victory over Grendel, but twice by defeating Grendel’s mother. He has proven his worth and it appears to be that Beowulf has a very heroic future ahead of him as a great leader and ruler. However, closer to the end of this speech, a warning ensues “but in little time/sickness or a sword will strip it from you/either enfolding flame or a floods billow/or a knife-stab or the stoop of a spear/death shall soon have beaten you then/O brave warrior!” (1761-67) The use of alliteration is prominent in these lines with the constant use of the sounds of “s”, as well as “e” and “f”. These constant sounds help show the seriousness of this warning. Alliteration helps set the tone of what’s to come in Beowulf’s future. Because the tone is set as serious, that means that Beowulf needs to be careful because not everything that’s good, lasts. As the speech predicted, in the end, Beowulf meets his fate and dies during the battle with the dragon. “From the thoughts of his breast; he embraced the pyres/seething surges; soul left its case/going its way

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