Grendel's Mom In Beowulf

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Essay on Beowulf: Grendel’s mom: Hero or Monster. A hero, in the book Beowulf is described as someone that, “[bares] himself [or herself] with valour; / and... [takes] no advantage...(watches and controls) their god-sent strength and... natural powers” (2176-2184). When Grendel’s mother attacks Heorot after Beowulf defeated her son by ripping his arm out of his socket, she sneaks in and steals a very important person. “She pounced and [had] taken one of the retainers in a tight hold, / then headed for the fen” (1294-1295). At first glance Grendel’s moms actions seem very monster-like, but looking back into Beowulf it is clear that this is not the case. On page 71 when a party is being held for Beowulf’s victory over Grendel, Beowulf must provide wergild for the man in which Beowulf let die in the fight. “And compensation, / a price in gold, was settled for the Geat / Grendel had cruelly killed earlier” (1052-1054). The art of wergild in Beowulf is heroic code for compensation reguarding the life of someone else. The bereaved party is awarded either a person or money and treasure in agreement that no vengeance will be taken. The acts of Grendel’s mother actually embody heroism. She bares herself with valour and she controls her God…show more content…
marauding round the heath / and desolate fens... [a] grim demon... [descendant from] Cain’s clan” (100-106). When Beowulf and the rest of the Geats approach the water in which Grendel’s mother lives in, “everybody gazed as the hot gore / kept wallowing up and an urgent war-horn / repeated it’s notes: the whole party / sit down to watch. The water was infested / with... writhing sea dragons” (1422-1425). The habitat in which Grendel’s mom lives is a dirty infested swamp. This swamp is not quite the heroic palace and or mead-hall heros like Beowulf live in. The sea monsters in her swamp are not quite Kings men and nobles

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