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Hero Archetype: Beowulf, Sir Gawain And Faustus

1352 words - 6 pages

A few days later, Doctor Faustus stands in a circle and tells himself to “begin thine incantations” (The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus. Scene 3. 5). Shortly after reciting the incantations and calling for Mephistopheles, Mephistopheles appears before Doctor Faustus. Mephistopheles explains to Faustus that he cannot serve him as he wishes because he is a “servant to great Lucifer” (The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus. Scene 3. 33). Even though Faustus cannot have Mephistopheles as his servant, his ambition for the various things he dreamt about are enough to make him sign his life away to Lucifer. Soon after, Faustus signs the agreement in blood and agrees to “give both body and ...view middle of the document...

This foreshadows that Beowulf will once again leave for an adventure. After Beowulf proclaims he will defeat Grendel’s mother he and his men leave Herot and “followed her heavy/ Feet, that had swept straight across/ The shadowy wasteland” (Beowulf 1403-1405). Once Beowulf and his men arrived at the lake after following the beast’s tracks, “They could see the water crawling with snakes,/ Fantastic serpents swimming in the boiling/ Lake, and sea beasts lying on the rocks” (Beowulf 1425-1427). Seeing the various monsters and creatures did not stop Beowulf, he continued on with his adventure and “Began to fasten on his armor” (Beowulf 1442). Beowulf continuing his adventure regardless of the serpents and creatures ties into the aforementioned trait of being fearless. Once in the water “for hours he sank through the waves” (Beowulf 1495). His journey then continued into the lair of Grendel’s mother and ends with Beowulf killing her. The last leg of Beowulf’s journey involves him going to find the dragon that is terrorizing his people. After finding the man that stole from the dragon, Beowulf forces the man to “lead them to the monster’s/ Hidden home” (Beowulf 2408-2409). Once he led them there it’s discovered that the dragon lives in “huge/ Stones, set deep in the ground” (Beowulf 2409-2410). Although finding and defeating the dragon was the last part of Beowulf’s journey, he did go one more place after his death. After the soldiers cremated his body in the pyre “they made his monument,/ Sealed his ashes in walls” (Beowulf 3159-3160). Sir Gawain also leaves his home to go an adventure. Once Sir Gawain accepts the challenge set by the Green Knight he is to “Find the green chapel” in a day and a year (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 451). On All- Saints Day, Sir Gawain “wished them all/ Farewell” and then “spurred his horse and rode strongly away” (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 668-669 & 670). On his journey through England he ended up “Crossing at Holy Head and landing/ In the wilderness of Wirral Forest” (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 700-701). His task to find the Green Knight then leads him to a castle with “chalk-white chimneys, gleaming/ Bright in the sun” (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 798-799). The final leg of Sir Gawain’s journey involves him leaving the castle and venturing to find the chapel of the Green Knight. Once the guide takes Sir Gawain as far as he will go, Sir Gawain continues on his own and soon finds “A queer kind of mound, in a glade” (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 2171). He discovers the chapel of the Green Knight is really an “ugly, gruesome, all overgrown” cave (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 2190). After facing the Green Knight, Sir Gawain closes out his journey by returning “home/ To Arthur’s castle” (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 2475-2476). The final character, Doctor Faustus, also...

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