Beowulf summary

beowulf summary

SparkNotes : beowulf : Plot overview

26 Second battle: Grendel's mother Edit The next night, after celebrating Grendel's defeat, Hrothgar and his men sleep in heorot. Grendel's mother, angry that her son has been killed, sets out to get revenge. Earlier, after the award of treasure, the geat had been given another lodging his assistance would be absent in this battle. 27 Grendel's mother violently kills Æschere, who is Hrothgar's most loyal fighter, and escapes. Hrothgar, beowulf, and their men track Grendel's mother to her lair under a lake. Unferth, a warrior who had doubted him and wishes to make amends, presents beowulf with his sword Hrunting. After stipulating a number of conditions to Hrothgar in case of his death (including the taking in of his kinsmen and the inheritance by Unferth of beowulf's estate beowulf jumps into the lake, at the bottom of which he finds a cavern containing Grendel's body. Grendel's mother and beowulf engage in fierce combat.

Give me a short summary of the epic poem, beowulf?

Hrothgar and his people, helpless against Grendel, abandon heorot. Beowulf, a young warrior from geatland, hears of Hrothgar's troubles and with his king's permission leaves his homeland to assist Hrothgar. 20 beowulf and his men spend the night in heorot. Beowulf refuses to use any weapon because he holds himself essay to be the equal of Grendel. 21 When Grendel enters the hall, beowulf, who has been feigning sleep, leaps up to clench Grendel's hand. 22 Grendel and beowulf battle each other violently. 23 beowulf's retainers draw their swords and rush to his aid, but their blades cannot pierce Grendel's skin. 24 Finally, beowulf tears Grendel's arm from his body at the shoulder and Grendel runs to his home in the marshes where he dies. 25 beowulf displays "the whole of Grendel's shoulder and arm, his awesome grasp" for all to see at heorot. This display would you fuel Grendel's mother's anger in revenge.

An elaborate history of characters and their lineages is spoken of, as well as their interactions with each other, debts owed and repaid, and deeds of valour. The warriors form a kind of brotherhood linked by loyalty to their lord. What is unique about "Beowulf" is that the poem actually begins and ends with a funeral. At the beginning of the poem, the king, hero, lined shield Shiefson dies (2645) and there is a huge funeral for him. At the end of the poem when beowulf dies, there is also a massive funeral for beowulf (31403170). First battle: Grendel Edit beowulf begins with the story of Hrothgar, who constructed the great hall heorot for himself and his warriors. In it, he, his wife wealhtheow, and his warriors spend their time singing and celebrating. Grendel, a troll-like monster said to be descended from the biblical cain, is pained by the sounds of joy. 19 Grendel attacks the hall and kills and devours many of Hrothgar's warriors while they sleep.

beowulf summary

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Beowulf kills Grendel with his bare hands and Grendel's mother with a giant's sword that he found in her lair. Later in his life, beowulf becomes king of the geats, and finds his realm terrorized by a dragon, some of whose treasure had been stolen from his hoard in a burial mound. He attacks the dragon with the help of his thegns or servants, but they do not succeed. Beowulf decides to follow list the dragon to its lair at Earnanæs, but only his young Swedish relative wiglaf, whose name means "remnant of valour a dares to join him. Beowulf finally slays the dragon, but is mortally wounded in the struggle. He is cremated and a burial mound by the sea is erected in his honour. Beowulf is considered an epic poem in that the main character is a hero who travels great distances to prove his strength at impossible odds against supernatural demons and beasts. The poem also begins in medias res or simply, "in the middle of things which is a characteristic of the epics of antiquity. Although the poem begins with beowulf's arrival, Grendel's attacks have been an ongoing event.

15 like the finnesburg Fragment and several shorter surviving poems, beowulf has consequently been used as a source of information about Scandinavian figures such as Eadgils and Hygelac, and about continental Germanic figures such as Offa, king of the continental Angles. 19th-century archaeological evidence may confirm elements of the beowulf story. Eadgils was buried at Uppsala according to Snorri Sturluson. When the western mound (to the left in the photo) was excavated in 1874, the finds showed that a powerful man was buried in a large barrow,. 575, on a bear skin with two dogs and rich grave offerings. The eastern mound was excavated in 1854, and contained the remains of a woman, or a woman and a young man. The middle barrow has not been excavated. 16 11 The protagonist beowulf, a hero of the geats, comes to the aid of Hrothgar, king of the danes, whose great hall, heorot, is plagued by the monster Grendel.

Lines 1-300, summary, shmoop

beowulf summary

Beowulf : a, summary in English Prose

Alfred the goat Great or with the court of King. 10, finds from the western mound, left, excavated in 1874. Gamla Uppsala, sweden, support, beowulf and the sagas. 11, the poem deals with legends, was composed for entertainment, and does not separate between fictional elements and historic events, such as the raid by king. Though beowulf himself is not mentioned in any other Anglo-saxon manuscript, 12 scholars generally agree that many of the other figures referred. Beowulf also appear in Scandinavian sources. (Specific works are designated in the following section).

13 This concerns not only individuals (e.g., healfdene, hroðgar, halga, hroðulf, eadgils and Ohthere but also clans (e.g., Scyldings, scylfings and Wulfings) and certain events (e.g., the battle on the Ice of lake vänern ). In Denmark, recent archaeological excavations at Lejre, where Scandinavian tradition located the seat of the Scyldings,. E., heorot, have revealed that a hall was built in the mid-6th century, exactly the time period of beowulf. 14 Three halls, each about 50 metres (160 presentation ft) long, were found during the excavation. 14 The majority view appears to be that people such as King Hroðgar and the Scyldings in beowulf are based on historical people from 6th-century Scandinavia.

The dragon's treasure-hoard is buried with him. It is said that they lie there still. Approximate central regions of tribes mentioned. Beowulf, with the location of the. See, scandza for details of Scandinavia's political fragmentation in the 6th century. The events in the poem take place over most of the sixth century, after the.


Anglo-saxons had started migrating to England and before the beginning of the seventh century, a time when the Anglo-saxons were either newly arrived or were still in close contact with their. Germanic kinsmen in Northern Germany and southern Scandinavia. The poem may have been brought to England by people of geatish origins. 7, many suggest that, beowulf was first composed in the 7th century. Rendlesham in, east Anglia, that the, sutton hoo ship-burial also shows close connections with Scandinavia, and that the east Anglian royal dynasty, the. Wuffingas, may have been descendants of the geatish. 8 9, others have associated this poem with the court of King.

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Beowulf must battle one more demon. A fiery dragon has become enraged because a lone fugitive has inadvertently discovered the dragon's treasure-trove and stolen a valuable cup. The dragon terrorizes the countryside at night, burning several homes, including beowulf's. Led by the fugitive, beowulf and eleven of his gps men seek out the dragon's barrow. Beowulf insists on taking on the dragon alone, but his own sword, naegling, is no match for the monster. Seeing his king in trouble, one thane, wiglaf, goes to his assistance. The others flee to the woods. Together, wiglaf and beowulf kill the dragon, but the mighty king is mortally wounded. Dying, beowulf leaves his kingdom to wiglaf and requests that his body be cremated in a funeral pyre and buried high on a seaside cliff where list passing sailors might see the barrow.

beowulf summary

Suddenly beowulf spots a magical, giant sword and uses it to cut through the mother's spine at the neck, killing her. A blessed light unexplainably illuminates the cavern, disclosing Grendel's corpse and a great deal of treasure. Beowulf decapitates the corpse. The magic sword melts to its hilt. Beowulf returns to the lake's surface carrying the head and hilt but leaving the treasure. After more celebration and gifts and a sermon by Hrothgar warning of the dangers of pride and the mutability of time, beowulf and his art men return to geatland. There he serves his king well until Hygelac is killed in battle and his son dies in a feud. Beowulf is then named king and rules successfully for 50 years. Like hrothgar, however, his peace is shattered in his declining years.

years. But Grendel's mother — not quite as powerful as her son but highly motivated — climbs to heorot that night, retrieves her son's claw, and murderously abducts one of the Scyldings (Aeschere) while beowulf sleeps elsewhere. The next morning, Hrothgar, beowulf, and a retinue of Scyldings and geats follow the mother's tracks into a dark, forbidding swamp and to the edge of her mere. The slaughtered Aeschere's head sits on a cliff by the lake, which hides the ogres' underground cave. Carrying a sword called. Hrunting, a gift from the chastised Unferth, beowulf dives into the mere to seek the mother. Near the bottom of the lake, grendel's mother attacks and hauls the geat warrior to her dimly lit cave. Beowulf fights back once inside the dry cavern, but the gift sword, Hrunting, strong as it is, fails to penetrate the ogre's hide. The mother moves to kill beowulf with her knife, but his armor, made by the legendary blacksmith Weland, protects him.

Beowulf responds with dignity while putting Unferth in his place. In fact, the two swimmers were separated by a storm on the fifth night of the contest, and beowulf had slain nine sea monsters before finally returning to shore. While the danes retire to safer sleeping quarters, beowulf and the geats bed down in heorot, fully aware that Grendel will visit them. Angered by the joy of the men in the mead-hall, the ogre furiously bursts in on the geats, killing one and then reaching for beowulf. With the strength of 30 men in his hand-grip, beowulf seizes the ogre's claw and does not let. The ensuing battle nearly destroys the great hall, but beowulf emerges victorious as he rips Grendel's claw from its shoulder socket, sending the mortally wounded beast fleeing to his mere (pool). The claw trophy hangs high under the roof of heorot. The danes celebrate the next day with a huge feast featuring entertainment by Hrothgar's scop (pronounced "shop a professional bard who accompanies himself on a harp and sings or chants shredder traditional lays such as an account of the danes' victory at Finnsburh. This bard also improvises a song about beowulf's victory.

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Bookmark this page, beowulf is the longest and greatest surviving Anglo-saxon poem. The setting of the epic is the sixth century in what is now known as Denmark and southwestern Sweden. The poem opens with a brief genealogy of the Scylding (Dane) royal plan dynasty, named after a mythic hero, scyld Scefing, who reached the tribe's shores as a castaway babe on a ship loaded with treasure. Scyld's funeral is a memorable early ritual in the work, but focus soon shifts to the reign of his great-grandson, Hrothgar, whose successful rule is symbolized by a magnificent central mead-hall called heorot. For 12 years, a huge man-like ogre named Grendel, a descendant of the biblical murderer cain, has menaced the aging Hrothgar, raiding heorot and killing the king's thanes (warriors). Grendel rules the mead-hall nightly. Beowulf, a young warrior in geatland (southwestern Sweden comes to the Scyldings' aid, bringing with him 14 of his finest men. Hrothgar once sheltered beowulf's father during a deadly feud, and the mighty geat hopes to return the favor while enhancing his own reputation and gaining treasure for his king, hygelac. At a feast before nightfall of the first day of the visit, an obnoxious, drunken Scylding named Unferth insults beowulf and claims that the geat visitor once embarrassingly lost a swimming contest to a boyhood acquaintance named Breca and is no match for Grendel.


Beowulf summary
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  3. The setting of the epic is the sixth century in what is now known as Denmark and southweste. Free summary and analysis of Lines 1-300 in Unknown's beowulf that won't make you snore. Beowulf was composed by an unnamed English poet sometime between about 700. These dates, based on internal contextual and linguistic evidence, are not universally accepted by scholars.

  4. Get all the key plot points of Anonymous's beowulf on one page. From the creators of SparkNotes. Beowulf b eɪ ə w ʊ l f old. The protagonist beowulf, a hero of the geats, comes to the aid of Hrothgar, king of the danes, whose great hall. Beowulf is the longest and greatest surviving Anglo-saxon poem.

  5. A short summary of 's beowulf. This free synopsis covers all the crucial plot points of beowulf. Free summary and analysis of the events in Unknown's beowulf that won't make you snore. Beowulf is an epic poem originally told in the Old English between the 8th and 11th centuries. Beowulf study guide contains literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, char. Get an answer for 'give me a short summary of the epic poem beowulf?' and find homework help for other beowulf questions at enotes.

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