Analysis of an Anglo-Saxon Hero
In Anglo-Saxon literature and most likely in Anglo-Saxon times, men were
measured by many of the same aspects of life that men are measured by today.
Men of that time period were godless, fearless, fame seeking, and most of all,
courageous. Warriors, sailors, exiles, and even gods were in search of these
things and often achieved them through completing daring deeds, withstanding
harsh conditions, or beating the odds.
It wasn t odd for men to die to get the
job done either.
Beowulf, a Scandinavian warrior, not only killed a terrifying monster,
the monster s mother, and countless sea-monsters, but also killed a huge dragon
too, achieving fame and showing a neighboring kingdom how much strength,
courage, and fearlessness he had.
It also seemed that heroes of that time had
to boast about their deeds to other kingdoms and villages.
In Beowulf, when
Beowulf greets Hrothgar, he says,
I am kinsman and thane of Hygelac.
In my youth I
have set about many brave deeds. (Abrams, pg. 28)
How many times have you introduced yourself to someone and say,