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Unformatted text preview: The final battle features the kind of staccato interchange that the Beowulf poet depicts so well. The action here (26692708) is tight, detailed, and furious, some of the best in the poem. Wiglaf rushes to Beowulf's side. The dragon almost immediately reduces the young retainer's shield to cinders. As Wiglaf ducks behind Beowulf's shield, the old warrior summons the strength to swing his famous sword so hard that it snaps against the dragon's head. Seeing his chance, the dragon charges once more, seizing Beowulf by the neck with his poisonous fangs. Distressed by his king's situation, Wiglaf throws all care aside and attacks, even though his fighting hand is seriously burned in the process. He finds an unprotected spot and thrusts his sword into the dragon, cutting off the source of the monster's fire-breath. Beowulf manages one last blow, a thrust with his knife that opens the the monster's fire-breath....
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- Fall '09