Features of a National Hero as Reflected in Beowulf

The meat of an epic is usually derived from the violent and social chaos which is a central conflict often pitting the hero versus an unjust king. Traditionally the hero is brave; of course, he is almost superhuman in strength, successful in battle and contemptuous of his wounds – even of death. In addition, the […]

Discuss the Elements of Paganism and Christianity in Beowulf

Before the advent of Christianity in England, the Anglo-Saxon literature was pagan or secular. So is the case with Beowulf. The work is definitely the product of a pagan poet, finally modified by interpolations by Christian monk who gave it a veneer of Christian characteristic. Indeed, the poem derives the power of its flavor and […]

A Picture of the Society as Depicted in Beowulf

Every work of art is a faithful picture of the society. The picture of social life given us in Beowulf is essentially primitive to fight valorously, to eat and drink well, to be soothed by music after the daily labor and then – to sleep. The men described are men of words, brave and loyal […]

Beowulf as a National Epic

Beowulf is the earliest epic poem written in the English language. Although it is generally regarded as an epic poem, it is worthwhile to consider how far this long narrative poem about the exploits of Beowulf conforms to the Aristotelian conception of epic. An epic should be universal, taking in all of life and representing […]

Nature in Anglo-Saxon Poetry

The precarious existence of man in the face of natural forces and calamities has been the subject-matter of much great literature throughout the ages. Anglo-Saxon poetry also depicts a primitive world where the basic question of life is the fight – man has to wage against the hostile Nature. As the society was primitive and […]

Special Features of Anglo-Saxon Poetry

The Anglo-Saxon invaders, who came to Britain in the latter part of the 5th century A.D and eventually established their kingdom there, were the founders of English culture and English literature. The surviving Anglo-Saxon literature consists of two types of writing; the heroic poetry which bears the pictures of the pre-Christian heroic society of the […]