Beowulf

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Beowulf the Anglo Saxon Hero
It’s hard to imagine what a perfect individual is like, and how he or she reflects all of the morals and values of his or her society, but every now and then one special person comes quite close. In the story Beowulf, by Seamus Heaney, the character Beowulf, is the perfect embodiment of the Anglo Saxons, and their beliefs towards life, and living. In Anglo-Saxon culture, they believed that warriors should follow the Heroic code; an ancient germanic code that stressed the modern idea of chivalry through the individuals of the time. The Anglo Saxons also cherished warriors who not only were strong, but were humble and loyal to others. Time and time again, Beowulf is shown to carry these characteristics and ideals, and can easily be seen as the perfect Anglo Saxon. Because he embodies the Heroic Code in daily life, and is humble, and loyal, Beowulf is the perfect example of everything that the Anglo Saxons value and believe in.

Throughout the story, the reader is introduced to the concept known as the heroic code, and is reminded of it time and time again through the character Beowulf. During his rule over the Geatland, Beowulf learns about the dragon that has been harassing his people. Knowing that no one else could have possibly defeated the dragon, Beowulf took it upon himself to stand up against it. In doing so, Beowulf demonstrates a crucial part of the Heroic code, which was the idea of bravery in times of distress. He also displayed a similar part of the heroic code during his visit to the Daneland. When he realized that Grendel’s mother had come back to destroy Heorot, Beowulf took it upon himself to step up once again to face the great monster. Before going into battle, he turned to Hrothgar, and stated, “Wise sir do not grieve. It is always better/ to avenge dear ones than indulge in mourning.” (Beowulf 1384-5) This shows the reader that even in times of danger, that Beowulf is thinking about what the Heroic code expects...
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