The Anglo-Saxon epic is the most important work of Old
English literature, and is well deserved of the distinction. The epic tells the
story of a hero, a Scandinavian prince named , who rids the Danes
of the monster Grendel, a descendent of Cain, and of his exploits fighting
Grendel's mother and a Dragon. Throughout the epic, the Anglo-Saxon
story teller uses many elements to build a certain depth to the characters.
Just a few of the important character elements in are Wealth &
Honor, Biblical & Paganistic, and Man vs. Wild themes.
Many of the characters in Beowulf are, like in most epics, defined by
their status. But, in addition to status, the Anglo-Saxon culture also adds ...

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tendency to "In
battle, [leave] the common pasture untouched, and taking no lives."
Through this display of compassion for the commoner who doesn't fight in
battles, Hrothgar proves the full extent of his honor and therefore the extent
of his wealth and status. Beowulf, the hero-prince, also proves his true
wealth and status through his deeds as defender of the Danes.. As he fights
and defeats Grendel, Beowulf Earns Fame and wealth from his companions,
and from the Danes, but more importantly, he earns honor raising him to the
level of an archetypal hero. Grendel, on the other hand, is the total opposite
of Beowulf. He has no wealth, no honor, and he in infamous as an evil
killer. This lack of wealth and honor defines Grendel as a symbol of evil and
corruption. In addition to using Honor and wealth to define a character's
character, the story-teller(s) have incorporated alternating Biblical and
Paganistic motifs in the epic-poem.
The original Epic was ...

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Beowulf. (2005, July 26). Retrieved January 19, 2019, from
"Beowulf.", 26 Jul. 2005. Web. 19 Jan. 2019. <>
"Beowulf." July 26, 2005. Accessed January 19, 2019.
"Beowulf." July 26, 2005. Accessed January 19, 2019.
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Added: 7/26/2005 10:43:16 AM
Category: English
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1004
Pages: 4

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