Beowulf, Christianity, and Paganism
The poem Beowulf is a renowned story that displays many different surroundings and religious beliefs. Some may believe the story of Beowulf portrays pagan beliefs or customs and others believe that the poem is more in agreement with Christian ethnicity. The author of Beowulf uses both Christian and pagan elements in the poem to define the heroic warrior, Beowulf, and the evil dragons. After reading Beowulf the author clearly shows how Beowulf is a man who is filled with Christian customs and is willing to die and defend the world against evil using the help of God.
Beowulf’s courage and faith can be seen throughout the entire poem. The author shows what the other characters thought of Beowulf in lines 114-119, “None of the wise ones regretting his going, much As he was loved by the Geats: the omens were good, And they urged the adventure on”. Beowulf can be represented or resembled as a biblical hero such as David or Samson. Beowulf overcame many difficult problems that others would not even contemplate to take on. Beowulf the Geat took on Grendel and Grendel’s Mother. He also came to fellow warrior Hrothgar’s aid and even risked his own life for the sake of his warriors.
The author makes evident what the evil is in the poem Beowulf. The evil dragon’s in Beowulf would be Grendel, Grendel’s Mother, and the final dragon who took Beowulf’s life. The author introduces Grendel in the beginning of the Poem. Grendel is the monster who threatens Hrothgar’s kingdom. The author describes Grendel by writing in lines 17-24, “Grendel, who haunted the moors, the wild marshes, and made his home in a hell Not hell but earth, He was spawned in that slime, conceived by a pair of those monsters born of Cain, murderous creatures banished By God, punished forever for the crime of Abel’s Death”. This quote clearly shows the reference back to the Bible. It explains how the author uses Grendel as one of the offspring’s of Cain whom killed his brother Abel. Beowulf was the one warrior who was able to stop Grendel. Beowulf travels to Grendel’s lair in the marsh with some of his finest soldiers. When Beowulf and his men met Grendel the weapons of Beowulf’s army became dull from a spell. The weapons could not scratch the skin of Grendel. Beowulf used the faith from God to defeat Grendel without the use of weapons. Beowulf was able to hold onto Grendel’s arms until they were ripped off. Beowulf put his life at risk by using his courage and faith to overcome Grendel.
Another evil that Beowulf was able to concur using the help of God was Grendel’s Mother. Grendel’s Mother was furious about the death of her only son and came into Hrothgar’s kingdom. While in the kingdom she...