Beowulf The Epic Tale
Definition of Epic Hero • An Epic Hero is the central figure in an epic that reflects the values and heroic ideals of a particular society. • An epic is a long narrative poem that recounts the events of the epic hero on a grand scale.
Characteristics of Epic Hero • Great leader who represents the best qualities of his society • Performs great deeds in battle • Has a great reputation and is known by others • Goes on a journey • A protector of his people
Characteristics of an Epic • The setting is broad and includes supernatural elements. • The story is told in heightened language and was passed down orally. • The journey includes three phases: 1. Departure-Beowulf leaves his homeland-Geatland 2. Initiation-Beowulf proves he is indeed the great epic hero 3. Return-Beowulf goes back to his homeland where he is king
Figurative Language • Alliteration-repetition of consonant sounds (swampland sliding silently) • Kennings-a literary device in which a noun is renamed in a creative way (must be two words)example: Kenning for superman=man of steelAppositives: descriptive phrases that rename a nounexample: Beowulf, the best of all menArchetype: the perfect example of somethingexample: Beowulf is an archetype of an epic hero
People/Places to Know • Beowulf-the great epic hero/King of the Geats/son of Edgetho • Hrothgar-King of the Danes/built HerotHerot-the great mead/banquet hallGrendel-man-eating monster who lives at the bottom of the lake/Beowulf’s enemyHiglac-Beowulf’s uncleEdgetho-Beowulf’s fatherDanes-Hrothgar’s people
More People to Know • Geats-Beowulf’s peopleWiglaf-a Geat warrior-only man to help Beowulf in last battle • Healfdane-Hrothgar’s father • Hrunthing-Beouwlf’s sword • Lair-Grendel’s underwater cave
Three Main Battles • Beowulf vs. GrendelBeowulf vs. Grendel’s mother • Beowulf vs. Dragon