Pride In Beowulf

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The Anglo-Saxon culture, a culture known for placing the needs of others before oneself, became prevalent at the beginning of the fifth century. The Anglo-Saxon people showed loyalty to their king even if they did not believe in his cause. In the epic poem Beowulf, the protagonist parallels the Anglo-Saxon’s culture with his loyalty to King Hrothgar. Beowulf’s courage to willingly go fight for another country shows that he has not only courage, but strength, leadership, and bravery. Beowulf exemplifies hero-like qualities by obeying his king and fighting for fame. In Seamus Heaney's translation of Beowulf, Beowulf defines the qualities of an epic hero through his bravery, leadership, and strength; therefore, Beowulf's upholding of the heroic…show more content…
This classifies Beowulf as an epic hero leading all the way up to his death. Norma Kroll, an English professor at University of Massachusetts Boston, discusses the differences between Unferth and Beowulf and how their morals contradict. “Although the verbal conflict between Unferth and Beowulf seems a matter of personal pride, it ends by contributing to Unferth’s and validating Beowulf’s political wisdom.” (126). King Hrothgar invites Beowulf to come and feast with him before he fights Grendel, but then Unferth comes in to try and defame him. Unferth, who does not talk well of Beowulf says, “but you vied / for seven nights; and then he out swam you, / came ashore the stronger contender” (35.516-518). After Beowulf travels very far to come and help the Danes, the people still question his fame. Beowulf does not care about what the people say nor does he rebuke to further this idea of his sacrificial characteristics. Beowulf shows the people and also proves to himself that himself, Beowulf an sacrificial character because even when the people he protects doubt him such as the Danes, he still stays and helps protects them. Unferth’s public detest of Beowulf’s fame does not discourage him but drives him to make a grand speech. Beowulf performs his heroic boast in front of King Hrothgar and his queen, impressing them and preparing himself for the fight to come. Beowulf, son of…show more content…
Beowulf’s need to protect Hrothgar’s civilization and single handedly destroy Grendel and his mom proves that Beowulf indeed carries the attributes of an epic hero. He exhibits bravery not only in his care for protecting others, but also in his actions; Beowulf fights these monsters without weapons to be fair and to win over the approval of others. Beowulf’s ability to gather his men for a treacherous journey across the sea for the purpose of saving King Hrothgar and his civilization from Grendel highlights his undeniable leadership skills. Beowulf's ability to remain calm after Unferth tries to defame his name shows his ability to follow the heroic code and stay noble. Beowulf puts his people’s needs before his own, and he uses his supernatural strength to provide safety for others. He follows the heroic code and fights with honor and nobility, which defines him as an epic hero. Through these characteristics many felt the weight of the loss of Beowulf in his final moments showing that he did achieve what he wanted in life; Beowulf became immortalized

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