Grendel’s wilderness is countered in mankind’s ways, especially Beowulf’s.Beowulf is tame and civilized, the epitomy of goodness and purity.Beowulf, the hero-prince, also proves his true wealth and status through his deeds as defender of the Danes..
Beowulf has many other such archetypal, symbolic themes and motifs, but the most important themes that serve to add depth to the characters are the wealth, honor, religious, man, and wildness themes.
These themes don’t only serve to define a character, but they also factor in as a motive for their actions.
One example of this is in Canto 6 line 381 in which Hrothgar states, “Our Holy Father had sent as a sign of His grace, a mark of His favor, to help us defeat Grendel and end that terror.” This religious description shows Beowulf as a sort of messiah sent by god to save man from evil.
But, more than that, since Beowulf is in fact not a messiah, this description shows the good in Beowulf’s heart and the purpose of his mission.
But, in addition to status, the Anglo-Saxon culture also adds an element of honor.
To the Anglo-Saxons, a character’s importance, as well as their wealth and status, where measured not only in monetary terms, but it was also measured in terms of honor, fame, and accomplishments.
Defeating Grendel, he shows that man, without armor and weapons, can defeat evil in any form including that of his foe Grendel.
This deed serves throughout the epic serves as a symbol of Beowulf’s Goodness.
Another Biblical reference in Beowulf is shown in the tower of Herot which is very similar to the tower of Babel in the fact that it’s built as a sign of superiority and accomplishment.
Like Babel, though, Herot only serves as a symbol of downfall more than one of glory because it causes many deaths and the coming of Grendel. Biblical themes and motifs, character is also shown through a certain Man vs. This motif shows the difference between mankind’s ways good, and evil’s wild nature evil.