Research Paper On Beowulf

724 Words3 Pages
Poetry has a tendency to withstand time better than other forms of literature due to the rhyme and rhythm. The rhyme and rhythm allow the poem to be remembered easier and retold orally. Much like a game of telephone, the original story will be influenced by the surrounding environment. Beowulf is the oldest Old English epic poem dating back to the eighth century. Until it was recorded around the tenth century, Beowulf experienced changes to the story including the addition of Christian ideas, which conflicted those of the Germanic tribes’ paganistic beliefs. In addition to the conflicting religious ideas, Beowulf also demonstrates the classic heroic ideals and Anglo-Saxon society. The passage shows clear distinctions in religious beliefs,…show more content…
An example of the heroic ideals Beowulf himself because he is the perfect warrior. Beowulf remarks, “ However it chanced, my sword slew Nine of the creatures” (Beowulf’s Vow. 564-565). Being able to emerge from any battle victorious was a huge part of Anglo-Saxon culture because war was such a common event. Warriors were banded through fraternity, which was one of the most sacred values in Anglo-Saxon culture. Beowulf insults Unferth by saying he killed his own men (Beowulf’s Vow. 576-578). This is a huge blow to Unferth’s morale because breaking fraternity was unacceptable. Fraternity made up the each group like the Spear-Danes and the Geats. Tribal pride goes hand-in-hand with fraternity because both involves the close bonding of the individuals within the group. Beowulf shows his pride when he says, “ He [Grendel] expects no fight from the Spear-Danes. But I’ll show the Geat’s strength and stomach for war” (Beowulf’s Vow. 590-593). Beowulf shows great faith in his own warriors, the Geats. Beowulf also earns the respect of the chief elder (Beowulf’s Vow. 597-600). Earning respect from the elders was an Anglo-Saxon ideal because it meant that the warrior a strong and trustworthy

More about Research Paper On Beowulf

Open Document