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Journal #18. What makes a character a villain? Think about villains in popular culture ( Cruella DeVille , Darth Vader, The Joker, Wicked Witch of the West…) – what do popular villains have in common? . Grendel. Back to Old English…. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E806VmFC8io.

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What makes a character a villain? Think about villains in popular culture (CruellaDeVille, Darth Vader, The Joker, Wicked Witch of the West…) – what do popular villains have in common?

back to old english
Back to Old English…
  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E806VmFC8io
the villain of beowulf
The villain of Beowulf
  • Monster
  • Born of evil
  • Terrorizes Hrothgar’s hall
  • Murders Hrothgar’s men
  • “Mankind’s enemy”

But is he really a villain…?

history of grendel
History of “Grendel”
  • The main monster in the story of Beowulf is Grendel. That is capitalized as though it is a proper name like Fido or Black Beauty, but it was a species of serpent. People spoke of grendels pond or grendels pit or grendels wood, naming them according to where they lived. Grendel in the story was a grendelbecause he lived in a large pond full of coarse ferns. He probably had a loud, deep-throated growl. There are hints that an ancient word “grindill” means to bellow, and a Middle English word “grindel” means angry.
textual differences
Textual Differences
  • “A powerful monster, living down in the darkness…”
  • “So mankind’s enemy continued his crimes…”
  • “Let them beware…”
  • “Then a fierce evil demon suffered distress, long in torment…”
  • “Thus again and again, this foe of mankind…”
  • “Woe be to the one…”