Grendel's Mother

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Human Psyche: The Symbolism of Grendel and His Mother In Seamus Heaney’s translation of Beowulf, symbolism surrounds Grendel and his mother. The evil actions of both of the monsters, as well as their surroundings, reveal aspects of the human psyche. Grendel actions are based on resentment and malice that results from constant exclusion by those around him. The vengeance of a mother blinded by grief of her dead child fuels Grendel’s mother. The cave in which they dwell symbolises the dark world of resentful outcasts and the monsters’ relationship to Cain. This home also acts as a sanctuary from a world that views them as evil. Grendel and his mother’s actions and surroundings symbolically reveal the impulsiveness, morality, and potentially…show more content…
He is outcasted by the world, leaving him racked with evil and hatred towards those who done him wrong. In Beowulf, Grendel’s personality and origins are explained: "Grendel was the name of this grim demon /haunting the marches, marauding round the heath /and the desolate fens; he had dwelt for a time /in misery among the banished monsters, /Cain's Clan, whom the Creator had outlawed /and condemned as outcasts" (102-7, 9). This quote reveals that God cursed Grendel and his mother, therefor they are outcasted by the society around them. Hatred and hell surrounds Grendel in every aspect of his life, causing him to act out with destruction. As a descendant of Cain, Grendel inherited his evils and behavioral instincts, which causes Grendel's corrupt morality in addition to his surroundings. This reveals how the events of the past and the environment of the future will affect a person's conscience and their internalization of…show more content…
The cave in which the monsters dwell gives them security from humans and their hatefulness. The poem describes Grendel and his mother’s home as hidden in "...lairs of water-monsters" (1411,99) and "infested /with all kinds of reptiles...writhing sea-dragons /and monsters slouching on slopes by the cliff, /serpents and wild things such as those that often /surface at dawn to roam the sail-road /and doom the voyage" (1425-30, 99). The abundance of sea monsters in the lake that Grendel and his mother dwells in allows the monsters to hide without fear of being interrupted by humans. Grendel and his mother are aware of the harm humans can cause them, so they hide in their lair until the right time to strike against the enemy. Grendel and his mother’s isolated cave demonstrates how humans seclude themselves from threats and represents how the human psyche acts in benefit to the

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