Foreshadowing Events In Beowulf

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Essay Assignment #1 In Beowulf, an epic narrative poem based in Scandinavia, the stories of the past are linked with current heroes that can be used with foreshadowing events of the future. The society places value in the heroes that have come before them and try to uphold their honor by taking careful considerations of past events. When reflecting on the past and to be encouraged about the present and perhaps the future, two scenarios that are the most important to take to heart for the audience are the acceptance of Beowulf into Denmark from Hrothgar based off of his ancestry and the wisdom that Hrothgar bestows as he contrasts King Heremod with Beowulf. The fortunes of war had favored Hrothgar and gave him the ability to give back to others…show more content…
Benedict come from the rules that were established in the monastery. Among the guidelines of “The Rule of St. Benedict” there is a lesson on how priests shall be received by monks when they visit the monastery. They are instructed not to quickly grant a priest in, but rather treat him like Jesus treated Judas in the writings of Matthew, where it is written “Friend, for what purpose hast thou come? ” This is not the case for Beowulf who is immediately accepted by Hrothgar and does not have to persevere resolutely in his request to help the Danes. The society is shaken up by the attacks of Grendel and it appears they want an immediate fix, thus Hrothgar accepts Beowulf. He is accepted based off of his lineage and not solely based off of the honor he has gained by himself. If Hrothgar took the monastery approach and was cautious of Beowulf’s plea to come and defeat Grendel then it would have caused Beowulf to prove his own power based off of his previous feats. The lessons from St. Benedict offer another outlook on how Beowulf could have been accepted by Hrothgar but also teach the society that past is only part of a person’s…show more content…
What the past has to offer is lessons on the values that are sought after among the heroes in Beowulf. When Beowulf brings in the head of Grendel into Heorot and gives an account of the fight, he presents Hrothgar with a relic from long ago, the sword-hilt . In his acceptance of the sword Hrothgar offers wisdom to Beowulf as he compares him to a previous king – King Heremod. He recounts that Heremod brought little joy to the Danes and that his bloodthirsty lifestyle resulted in a life without happiness. Hrothgar encourages Beowulf to “learn from this / and understand true values” rather than giving into pride that can overpower him . The fatherly figure that Hrothgar embodies towards Beowulf is similar to how the father writes to his son in the King’s Mirror. The King’s Mirror was not a unique text as there were many versions of “Kingly Mirrors” in medieval Europe, so the wisdom offered in Beowulf from Hrothgar perhaps is used to instruct the audience on what values should be modeled in their society. The community in Beowulf can learn from the lessons presented in the King’s Mirror since they already place an emphasis on people having desirable values from the past. Even though the son is a merchant in King’s Mirror, the attributes can still be applied to a warrior in the Danish and Geat society. The father reminds his son to maintain his honor even during conflict, a lesson that

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