Disclaimer: This is an example of a student written essay.
Click here for sample essays written by our professional writers.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of UKEssays.com.

Is Beowulf A Epic Hero English Literature Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 2989 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

Reference this

In his epic story, the main character, Beowulf is a warrior king who has proven to possess the battle-hardened personality of an epic conqueror. Yet, through acts of lethal skill and incredible bravery he has maintained a durable reputation and his sense of royal duty. Beowulf shows the magnitude of his bravery when he carries out the assassinations of Grendel, the Troll Wife, and the Dragon. The fearless killing of these useless creatures has brought the warrior king, yet another burden, fame and as a model, the defense of his people is one of Beowulf’s most important imperial responsibilities.

Get Help With Your Essay

If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help!

Essay Writing Service

The poem starts with the slaughter of Grendel. In the slaughter of the unusually huge being Beowulf shows significant skills in bravery and cunning. Beowulf shows odd skill and bravery which shows the beginning of an epic hero. Beowulf showed bravery and ability when slaughtered Grendel with no sword or shield. The reason Beowulf chooses to kill Grendel with no protection or weapons is because he did not want to have an unfair advantages over Grendel. By defeating Grendel without any armor or weapons, Beowulf had proven to the people that he was not only brave but clever as well.

Beowulf shows great skill and bravery when he allegedly defeats Grendel’s mother, the Troll Wife. After killing the Thanes in the Mead Hall to make a point to Beowulf, Grendel says that he will able to kill her with the Hrunting. After stabbing the Troll Wife and winning the battle. Once again Beowulf demonstrates the personality traits of an epic hero. Beowulf also shows his bravery and skill while he was engaging the dragon in battle the Dragon. When battling and killing the Dragon, Beowulf knew he was ready to give up his own live in order to slay the Dragon. In addition, Beowulf’s traits show him as an epic conqueror by taking care of his royal duties.

Before taking his own life the king awarded Beowulf his kingdom and upon the king’s death, Beowulf would assume control and be crowned king. Beowulf realizes his responsibility to rule and defend his kingdom, with his royal duties. Although he ages over time, when Beowulf battles the dragon he realizes that must defend his people from a fiery death. It is Beowulf’s responsibility to protect and defend his people and kingdom from any from of attack.

In the next paragraph, Beowulf clarifies why he must carry out his royal duties. Hygelac offers Beowulf his family sword, as a way to repay him from the battle but Beowulf decides to give Hygelac his land, because his sword as served him well. By means of his hands and tough sword blade, while Beowulf is delicate and aged once the Dragon came. Beowulf understands that he will repay his people by slaughter the Dragon. Beowulf believes that he was giving so much to his people and being able to kill the dragon was his royal duties to protect his kingdom. The slaughter of Grendel, the Troll wife, and the Dragon was including in his royal duty.

Beowulf adapts the idea of endure reputation by taking royal obligation. Beowulf shows another trait of an epic hero during the idea of lasting reputation. The traits of enduring fame came about when Beowulf slaughters Grendel, The Troll Wife, and the Dragon. Following the killing of Grendel and The Troll Wife Beowulf is looked upon as a hero by numerous Thanes. When Beowulf murder Grendel, Beowulf stumble upon Heorot where he reward Beowulf with gold. While having a banquet in tribute of Beowulf, they told him to put on riches with true superior determination this will increase and do well and establish your strength. Beowulf has received the respect as a hero.

Fate showed hold on life when it comes to an end. Beowulf also becomes familiar to the thought of endure reputation with the land that is given to Beowulf to rule. Beowulf receives tribute when he dies. At the ending of the heroic poem, Beowulf’s people are sad, and keep on being sad while promising that his kingdom will always remember him as an epic hero Beowulf. The entire trait mentioned early proves Beowulf as an epic hero. Beowulf shows ability and bravery, lasting fame, and caring out his royal duties; all these personality traits show that Beowulf is an epic hero. By slaughtering Grendel and the Dragon, Beowulf demonstrated ability and bravery to his people by demonstrating his force of will and survival. Result from the slaughter of the Dragon even though Beowulf knows that the ending will possibly lead the way to his own death, he shows the traits of his royal duty. The king offer Beowulf his kingdom to rule it as a result of his great reputation. All these are personality of an epic hero, which Beowulf was a great epic hero.

Character Analysis

As Beowulf gets close to Danish ground, Beowulf is a young guy who is looking for a quest and fame. Beowulf was famous amongst his people which were the Geats, for his bravery. When Beowulf was a young man he clashed in many fights and as a consequence showed his great quality to everyone. Beowulf has several personalities which help him to be successful in fights. As he was young, Beowulf was recognized as the toughest man alive. His force permitted him to rule in fights. If not in favor of his pure force, he would not be able to beat Grendel, because Beowulf did not use any weapons since they were no match for Grendel. By fighting back with Grendel with no armaments, he releases himself up to a superior honor. Beowulf’s power can’t be seen as a weakness, as the outcome of his force might. Beowulf’s power permitted him to control the fight, but it also made him overconfident. While his over confidence allowed Beowulf to be certain of himself in the battles, several of his friends think that was a personal mistake to fight without a weapon. While Ecglaf see Beowulf as overconfident and worthless, by asking Beowulf “Are you the Beowulf who competed with Breca…swollen with pride…”( Burton Raffel ) as a result of his over confidents was a mistake in the judgment of others, Beowulf noticed it as self guarantee and applied it to his benefit. Beowulf as well had a tough courage of journey. Beowulf’s courage of a quest was the motivated Beowulf in to battle with Grendel. Beowulf’s power and courage of exploring a quest as well led him to fame in numerous battles, including the fight with Grendel.

Beowulf used his fame in earlier battles to validate himself when he went to help Hrothgar. As well showing his self guarantee and recognized courage possibly guides his judgment. Beowulf’s courage of making a quest he achieves a lot of fame but it may have got him into trouble, if he took the quest to an extreme. During his younger years, Beowulf uses his power for fame and gratitude. As he was grown-up his grand power was taken away, and Beowulf established himself with no one of his supreme skills. Beowulf afterward was king of the Geats, and when a dragon assaults his land, it was Beowulf’s duty to defend his people. Feeling irritated and enthusiastic for killing, his men and himself went to slay the dragon. Through the fight Beowulf is overpowered by the strength of the dragon due to his lack of power, and was saved by his close friend Wiglaf. Currently, Beowulf’s power, in its place of being a benefit to him, became a flaw. The failure of force, and the fight was discouraging to Beowulf; but he takes a walk. Following his fight with the dragon Beowulf realizes that his time has ended. Yet, Beowulf uses this moment on his death bed to reflect on the wrongs in his life. Beowulf as well uses his time to recover some fame, his fellow Thanes with all the great fights they fought. This is a symbol of Beowulf’s person guarantee. Still although guarantee himself no longer show him interested in fights, Beowulf promises himself that he have finished fine in his life. Throughout Beowulf life time, Beowulf was a mighty warrior. His courage and power helped him to victory, and he made certain that every person recognized him for it. With doing this he demonstrated his pride. Nevertheless, his entire attribute; force, bravery, personal guarantee, and his courageousness helped him for good. As they might include terrible things, Beowulf approved himself healthy and was appreciated by several people with the exception of Grendel.

Good against Evil

Beowulf is one of the agedness accessible pieces poetry in English literature. The poem is an Anglo-Saxon heroic poetry, which represent a legend of a heroic hero intended to conquer a fierce monster in arrange to save an empire from obliteration and casualty. The main subject matter in this classic poem is the theme of good vs. evil. The theme of good against evil was expose throughout the people and stuff that symbolize good and evil, which help reveal the topic all over the story, and explain the general result of this theme in the poem as a part of literature.

There are a lot of signs that symbolize good in Beowulf. Beowulf himself is a sign of good heroic. Beowulf is controlled and civilized which are the uniqueness of good and clarity. First off, Beowulf is untainted because he shows this while facing Grendel when Beowulf removes his body armor, and promise not to use a weapon to conquer Grendel. Later overpowering Grendel, he tells everyone that the monster was no match for himself without using any body armor and sword, can beat evil in several ways as well as for Grendel. This provide as a sign of Beowulf’s kindness. One more sign of good is light. Light represent daytime and joy. While light, such is the same as the sun, people seeing it gives people wisdom of calm and they don’t appear to be afraid of daytime. In relationship with light, expressions like unblemished and shiny also confirm to show good. Human culture used the appearance of epic warrior, is frequently related with light the halls are illumine with joy and riches. These shows how several times have Beowulf men, swear to wait after dark and follow the terror with a brush of their swords. Plus after that, in the sunrise, this mead-hall impressive, with fresh light would be soaked with blood, every bench with red stains as well as the floors, all soaked from the beast savage attack and his worriers would be died less every day. In this explanation of Herot once Grendel slaughter past, Hrothgar express the mead-hall like impressive, with fresh light which would be soaked by blood. Now light represent good, dark signify evil within Beowulf. Grendel cave is dark and ancient, and he just hunts by nighttime, in the dark. Dark and nighttime is related with evil and Grendel blood-spattered assault. Hrothgar’s soldiers face the evil and darkness; however the daylight approach, just their blood is present. This demonstrates that Grendel, the monstrous whose name sock fears to the people of Herot, as well is a sign of evil. This is revealed in this quote “Grendel was spawned in that slime, conceived by a pair of those monsters born Of Cain, murderous creatures banished By God, punished forever for the crime Of Abel’s death” (Burton Raffel). The enormous crowd had evil spirit came out, near the men demons divides into many appearance of evil like spirits and beast, troll, monsters, giant, a grasp eternally opposite the Lord’s determination, and yet again beaten. A different monster connected among evil is the dragon. In the ending Beowulf must battle one last fight with the dragon. The dragon blow breath of flames into Beowulf since Beowulf was trying to protect himself. However as his protection was dissolving, therefore murdering Beowulf. So the final fight comes along to Good, which can be Beowulf, against Evil, which symbol was the dragon.

The theme of good against evil is described all through the whole epic. In the starting of the poem there was Herot people which represented good, and Grendel, the evil. While Grendel slaughters the majority of the people in Herot, there was small good left. Except went Beowulf came to Herot there was more good. Consequently when Grendel assault Herot at night, Beowulf was waiting for him were Beowulf and Grendel battle it off. At the end evil was just a reminder of the pain Grendel bring to the kingdom. Beowulf manages to slaughter Grendel by means of rip off his arm. However a new evil prowl the dark swamp. This was Grendel’s mother which was greatly more evil than Grendel. Therefore Beowulf, motionless sentiment with the murder Grendel, set off her anger toward Beowulf. So the theme of good against evil rises ones more time. Beowulf then travels down to the lair where Grendel’s mother live she was prepared to take vengeance from Beowulf over Grendel’s death. Following the fight, it was good who conquer evil once more. Yet, the next fight wouldn’t t be so simple. As an outsider had taken discipline from a dragon’s cave to make compensation with Beowulf, which is the new king, Beowulf owns son which was the evil dragon was angry. The dragon set off to Beowulf’s kingdom and breathes flames to it. Therefore, Beowulf was currently prepared for one more fight with fatality. So, this symbolizes an additional good against evil fight. Wiglaf demonstrate kindness by serving Beowulf overcoming the dragon. Although the dragon prove equivalent evil when the Dragon went down with Beowulf to a dead. Therefore, in the ending of his final fight, it can be held that good and evil disintegrating. On the other hand, Wiglaf takes control of Beowulf kingdom in the result that good once more time succeeds.

In general the result of the theme include on the poem as a part of literature which Beowulf was symbolize good and Grendel symbolize evil. Beowulf had murder Grendel while Grendel had assault Hrothgar’s kingdom. Once Beowulf murder Grendel he include murdering Grendel’s mother as well. Then Beowulf went to the dark swamp to slaughter Grendel’s mother. Once he defeated Grendel’s mother after that every one in the kingdom of Herot dance, feast, and celebrate all night long. Beowulf at that time notice as a hero and was name to take over the throne to be the king. Everything was fine for years, in anticipation of an outsider stole the gold dragon from the dragon’s cave. The dragon after that ruined Beowulf’s kingdom. As vengeance Beowulf set out to slaughter the dragon. As a consequence, he slaughters the dragon however dyeing in the procedure. Wiglaf, a courageous warrior who assist Beowulf slaughter the dragon, after that was given the kingdom. Therefore, in general result of good against evil in the heroic poem was to demonstrate that Beowulf was a fine hero and to explain that good will forever succeed no matter what difficulty you will have to conquer.

Find Out How UKEssays.com Can Help You!

Our academic experts are ready and waiting to assist with any writing project you may have. From simple essay plans, through to full dissertations, you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs.

View our services

In the poem of Beowulf, the theme of good against evil was use commonly all over the heroic poem. Beowulf was recognize as a fine hero, and light was known as a sign of good. Grendel was identified as the evil monstrous that brought fear to Herot, and dark was recognized as a sign of great evil creeping around near. The theme of good against evil was portraying commonly all the way through the heroic poem throughout the fights between Beowulf and Grendel, and then Grendel’s mother, and finally with the dragon. The theme of good against evil contain in general outcome on the heroic poem by means of no matter why type of evil he comes upon up it will be constantly conquer by goodness. This was describing when Beowulf slaughters the dragon, and still despite the fact that he was also murder, Wiglaf accepted on his good heart to rule his former friend Beowulf. As a result, good defeat evil forever.

Work Cited

David L, Bender, (1998)BEOWULF. The Greenhaven Press Literary Companion To British Literature: Greenhaven Press. ISBN: 1-56510-812-4 retrieve June 6, 2010

Harold Bloom, (1996)BEOWULF. Bloom’s Notes: Chelsea House Publisher. ISBN: 0-7910-4053-4 retrieve June 11, 2010

Harold Bloom, (1987) Beowulf. Modern Critical Interpretations: Chelsea House Publishers. ISBN: 0-87754-904-4 retrieve May 22, 2010

B. Hieatt,& A.Kent Hieatt.(1967)Beowulf. And Other Old English Poems: Published by Bantam Dell. ISBN: 978-0-553-21347-8 retrieve May 20, 2010

J.Lesslie Hall, (2007)Beowulf. Saxon Poem, And The Fight At Finnsburg: retrieve May 17, 2010 http://books.google.com/books?id=di__Zw_7h50C&pg=PR11&dq=J.Lesslie+Hall,+%28%29Beowulf.+Saxon+Poem,+And+The+Fight+At+Finnsburg:&cd=1#v=onepage&q&f=false

Burton Raffel, Beowulf: A New Translation With An Introduction. Penguin Books, New York, 1963. ISBN: 0-451-62795-4 (pbk.) retrieve May 19, 2010 from http://www.beowulftranslations.net/raff.shtml

Burton Raffel, Beowulf: Beowulf Sails to Denmark. Penguin Books, New York, 1963. ISBN: 0-451-62795-4 (pbk.) retrieve May21, 2010 from http://www.beowulftranslations.net/journey.shtml

Burton Raffel, Beowulf Part one–translated, Prentice-Hall Literature–The British Tradition for this version, Google Docs, retrieve May 22, 2010 from http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=ajdb48nnx3xf_19htxfn8

Beowulf. (2006). In Continuum Encyclopedia of British Literature. Retrieved from http://www.credoreference.com.proxy.devry.edu/entry/britlit/beowulf

Bjork, Robert E. (Editor); Niles, John D. (1997) A Beowulf Handbook: retrieve June 8, 2010 http://books.google.com/books?id=SaFdpGdjvtoC&pg=PA52&dq=A+Beowulf+Handbook++++++by+Bjork,+Robert+E.+%28Editor%29%3B+Niles,+John+D.&hl=en&ei=bJMVTKafLMH6lwfQn8S_DA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCoQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false


Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:

Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.

Related Services

View all

DMCA / Removal Request

If you are the original writer of this essay and no longer wish to have your work published on UKEssays.com then please: