Hrothgar, the king of Danes, had the characteristics of a leader as strength, bravery and leadership at the beginning of the epic until the monster Grendel attacked . Grendel 's appearance eliminated the stability of the Danes. Instead of standing up fighting Grendel, Hrothgar cowardly retreated and allowed the monster to terrorize his kingdom for many years and countless innocent trusted warriors had been killed by the Gendel. As a result, people lost their sense of trust and security for the kingdom until Beowulf arrived to aid Hrothgar fight for the battle and eventually won the victory. However, the main reason he traveled across the sea to help Hrothgar was because Hrothgar had saved Beowulf’s father life earlier. He was a heavy drinker and was prone to bragging. He touted himself as the strongest man on earth and as the greatest warrior. Beowulf accepted the gold for killing the monster that threatened Hrothgar’s kingdom. From this point, I viewed Beowulf was kind of mercenary and not totally as altruistic in his motivation. In my opinion as a reader, Beowulf became less heroic with each battle both in his method and motivation. In the final battle with dragon, he tended to act for his own glory instead of protecting people. His heroic figure had less value and became somehow ambitious at the end of epic. Beowulf was deservedly celebrated as a great hero and his last courageous battle was somehow rash. He unnecessarily left his own people without a king and exposed them to danger from other tribes. Therefore, I think Beowulf was less heroic than when he was a youngster because his glory , ambition and his motivation displayed at the end of epics.
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