Q:

What makes beowulf a hero?

A:

The same bravery and physical strength that make Beowulf a great warrior also make him a great epic hero, as does his willingness to die for the good of others. SparkNotes also points out that he has embodies the main features of the Germanic heroic code, including loyalty, courtesy and pride.

When Beowulf approaches Hrothgar and offers to kill Grendel, he is already a very accomplished warrior who has achieved many feats, and he is a hero to the people. His willingness to rid the kingdom of Grendel as a way of returning a favor makes him noble. The extreme danger of the task is illustrated through the fact that Hrothgar's own men's attempts to kill Grendel have been futile. Beowulf displays great courage in not only eliminating Grendel but his mother as well. Though the dangers Beowulf faces become increasingly severe, he does not turn away from them or flee. He sees them through with the constant threat of his own life. Later in life, Beowulf transforms from a young warrior to a wise king who later dies in order to save the people of his kingdom from a dragon. Before dying, however, Beowulf succeeds in killing the dragon. Although there has been debate about whether or not Beowulf is as noble at the end of the epic as he is at the beginning, he is considered a prime example of the epic hero and is given as an example in Dictionary.com's definition of "epic hero."

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    How does aunt Alexandra feel about Calpurnia?

    A:

    In "To Kill a Mockingbird," Aunt Alexandra, Atticus Finch's older sister, comes to stay with Atticus and the children so that Scout can have a "feminine influence." She takes over as the female head of the household and thinks that the presence of Calpurnia, the Finch's long-time maid, is no longer necessary.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What rumors have been told about Gatsby?

    A:

    In the story "The Great Gatsby," some of the rumors that have been told about Gatsby include Gatsby being a bootlegger, a German spy, a nephew of Von Hindenburg, a second cousin to the Devil and a murderer. The novel was written by F. Scott Fitzgerald in 1925.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    On what date was King Arthur born?

    A:

    There is no specific birth date attributed to King Arthur. Legend says Arthur was based on a fifth or sixth century British warrior. While popular in mythology, there is no evidence to show that King Arthur was a real person.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Is Shakespeare still relevant today?

    A:

    Shakespeare is still relevant today because he is considered to be the greatest ever dramatist, prose writer and poet by many due to his rich language, complex characters and essential themes. The themes of treachery, honor, bravery, love and political intrigue are still themes in the modern era.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore