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Heroism As The Main Theme Of Beowulf

3878 words - 16 pages

Heroism as the Main Theme of Beowulf

The main theme of Beowulf is heroism. This involves far more than
physical courage. It also means that the warrior must fulfil his
obligations to the group of which he is a key member. There is a
clear-cut network of social duties depicted in the poem. The king has
an obligation to behave with generosity. He must reward his thanes
with valuable gifts for their defense of the tribe and their success
in battle. This is why King Hrothgar is known as the "ring-giver." He
behaves according to expectations of the duties of a lord when he
lavishly rewards Beowulf and the other Geat warriors for ridding the
Danes of Grendel's menace.

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