Virtue and Community in Beowulf Paper

Virtue and Community in Beowulf Comparison Paper
Jessica M Scalise
Lit / 235
September 7, 2015
Professor Patricia Moody
Beowulf is an epic that was passed on through oral tradition for hundreds of years before it was finally written down in the late tenth century in middle England. In 2007, a computer animated movie version of this poem was created. While the movie and poem are very similar, they do have some differences. For example, the movie raises questions about honesty that the poem does not. Both the poem and the movie show the virtues of bravery, honor, goodness, religion and loyalty while also showing the importance of community and kinship.
    In Beowulf’s poem world being good is to be honorable, brave, loyal, and giving. Beowulf and other Kings would give treasures to their thanes for their loyalty. Beowulf was a loyal and honorable man, which is what led to him battling with Grendel and then his mother on behalf of the King. Beowulf ripped off Grendel’s arm which caused him to die from injury. After Grendel’s mother had killed the king’s best friend to avenge her son’s demise, Beowulf followed her to her underwater cave and slit her throat with an ancient Giants sword. He then lopped off Grendel’s head and took it back to his king.
    In Beowulf’s movie world being good is to give the perception of honor, bravery, and loyalty. Everyone thought that Beowulf had slain Grendel’s mother, honoring the dead, but the truth was that he struck a deal with her instead. As long as Grendel’s mother was in possession of the golden dragon horn goblet, Beowulf impregnated her, and he swore to love no other, he would live a long and prosperous life and be a great king. She gave him Grendel’s head to take back to the king, so the falsified stories were believable, keeping his honor and loyalty intact.
    One trait of the ‘good’ that Beowulf shares in both the poem and the movie is religion. God is regularly mentioned throughout both. This shows that in...