The Anglo-Saxon culture created many heroes through lore and legend, but only a fraction of those heroes survived. The epic poem Beowulf shown the life of an extraordinary Anglo-Saxon man, but even though his qualities during that age made Beowulf a hero, some question whether his heroism is truly characteristic of a modern day hero. A hero in Beowulf’s age could be a hero in ours, if he/she had qualities like leadership, or courage. But, heroes could become quite the opposite if their intentions and motives come from corrupt or greedy thoughts. Beowulf is shown as a protector of his culture/ people. When the story Beowulf is told of read, he is always glamorized as a protector. “The mighty protector of men meant to hold the monster till its life leaped out” (Line 82, Beowulf). Beowulf is shown as a strong Anglo-Saxon leader, able to overcome any obstacle with his strength and charisma. Modern day heroes/ superheroes also possess this quality of being a protective figure. So, Beowulf’s protective traits make him a hero in our current age. But, some of Beowulf’s traits make him heroes polar opposite. Anglo-Saxon’s base their heroes off of their reputation and sadly, their wealth. Even though it seems like Beowulf has good intentions, they are actually masking his greedy intentions. “Seek if you dare! Save us, once more, and again twisted gold, heaped up ancient treasure, will reward you for the battle you will win” (175). The battle that will occur is with Grendel’s mom, who had been killing innocent people. Even though Beowulf fights for the people’s safety, his motives are influenced by treasure and fame. A hero in modern day society is not created by their wealth; they're created by their actions. Nelson Mandela spoke out against a racist and tyrannical government for the rights of the people, and that was his only intention, making him a hero in this age. Therefore Beowulf should not be classified as a hero in another age, based off of his...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document