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The Zodiac of Grendel
Transcript of The Zodiac of Grendel
(ram) willpower, impulsive initiative, courage, energy, activity.
Stubborn Ram in the introduction of the story gives away that this chapter is the Aries chapter.
Quote: "The old ram stands looking down over rock slides, stupidly triumphant." (Gardner 5)
(bull) sensual pleasure seeker, steadfast, strives for security.
The Bull attacking Grendel shows that this chapter is the Taurus chapter plus when Grendel expresses the security he feels and needs with his mother.
Quote: "Then, some thirty feet away, there was a bull. He stood looking at me with his head lowered, and the world snapped into position around him, as if in league with him." (19)
(twins) mental type, witty, communicative, mobile, pleasure in learning.
Because the Gemini symbol is twins, it can represent the double life Grendel experiences. He lives in the Shaper's reality as well as in his own personal reality. This shows that this chapter is Gemini.
Quote: "Thus I fled, ridiculous hairy creature torn apart by poetry- crawling, whimpering, streaming tears, across the world like a two-headed beast, like mixed-up lamb and kid at the tail of a baffled, indifferent ewe- and I gnashed my teeth and clutched the sides of my had as if to heal the split, but I couldn't."
Stood wrinkling my face, letting tears down my nose, grinding my fists into my streaming eyes, even though to do it I had to squeeze with my elbow the corpse of the proof that both of us were cursed, or neither, that the brothers had never lived, nor the god who judged them. Pg. 51
I think I was half prepared, in my dark, demented state, to see God, bearded and grey as geometry, scowling down at me, shaking his bloodless finger. Pg. 53
It was a cold- blooded lie that a god had lovingly made the world and set out the sun and moon as lights to land dwellers, that brothers had fought, that one of the races was saved, the other cursed. Pg. 55
As the cancer sign makes for the emotional, stubborn, and needy personality, the quotes above fit to the tee.
For instance the first quote is emotional, the second is needy, and the third is stubborn.
One of the major traits of a leo is they are very hardheaded, when Grendel is listening to the dragon he blocks him out. “I said, ‘ let them find some other “brute existent,” whatever that is I refuse.’ Pg. 73
Leos also love being the center of attention. Grendel sits and enjoys the dragon telling him about himself. He repeatedly tells the dragon to go on and keep talking.
Grendel, as we all know, is a very selfish and controlling animal with human thoughts. Virgos, or Virgins, love to be in control and have total power. In chapter six, Grendel has just gotten back from talking to the Dragon. He encounters humans and when they try and hurt him with weapons he realizes that he has a charm on him, that the Dragon applied. The charm has helped him, but in a way hurt him. He now cannot be hurt by the humans. Because the humans can’t harm him, he feels lonely now, dominant. “I felt trapped, as hollow as a rotten tree.” (Gardner, 81) Grendel also talks to Unferth and says how he pities the heroes, but he does understand how fulfilling it is, always being able to help out and being loved by everyone for your heroic work. One of the Virgos weaknesses is that they are shy and critical on themselves. Grendel displays this not only in this chapter, but through-out the entire book. ‘But also, as never before, I was alone.” (Gardner, 80)
“Balance is everything.” (Gardner, 91) In chapter seven of Grendel balance is created to stop a battle. Grendel watched the humans trying to balance and work things out. Hrothgar tries to fight with Hygmod, but to evade the battle Hygmod offers his sister to Hrothgar. Hygmod sees what a beautiful sister he is offering up, and eventually they return to Hart. This offering of peace made it so there was no battle or fight between the two lords. Now that Hygmod’s sister, Wealtheow, lives with Hrothgar Grendel doesn’t want to attack.
One night Grendel can’t overcome himself or his needs so he races down to Hrothgar’s castle and tries to slay Wealtheow. "So much for meaning as quality of life! I would kill her and teach them reality." (Gardner, 110) He wants to kill her to teach them, but during his act of rage he remembers his talk with the Dragon. The Dragon, although Grendel doesn’t think so, has helped Grendel in so many ways. He, Grendel, realizes that kill Wealtheow would not do any harm or good to anybody. Although it would cause a great heartbreak and anger in Hrothgar, Grendel knows that would only be a selfish reaction. In the end her death wouldn’t hurt anybody in mankind, but does that necessarily mean that it would be good for mankind?
John, Gardener. Grendel. New York City: Vintage Books USA, 1989.
Aquarius are determined and forceful in how they deal with things and people, as seen when Grendel is following Beowulf. “Afraid or not I would go to the mead hall, I knew.” Pg. 157
The water bender is represented when they arrive, via the ocean.
Pisces are typically defined as “spiritual developed characters”
They look at the world universally, when Beowulf tears his arm off Grendel snaps into reality and says “It was as if the room was struck by lightning.” Pg. 172
The sun walks mindlessly overhead, the shadows lengthen and shorten as if by plan. Pg. 138
“ The gods made this world for our enjoyment!” the young priest squeals. Pg. 138
The queen puts her fingers gently on the old man’s forehead. Pg. 143
At this part of the story the characters are really seeing the end of the king's rule so they also have a sense of endurance. They see that they have purpose and are proud to have what they have invested in.
In the town, children go down on their backs in the drifted snow and move their arms and, when they rise leave behind them impressions, mysterious and ominous, of winged creatures. Pg. 125 This quote demonstrates the love of movement and carefree aspects.
They’re like wings, filled with otherworldly light.pg.126 Free spirit is definitely applied to this quote and being " other worldly" is an indubitable example.
Time is inside them, transferred from chamber to chamber like sand in an hour glass; it can no more get outside than sand in the lower chamber can rise to the upper without a hand to turn stiff nature on its head. Pg. 126
The free flow motion of the quote is shown not only by this quote but in the surrounding paragraphs, for the feel of the characters in the text is free.
Scorpios don’t broadcast their emotions, but they have very deep and intense ones that they keep to themselves. They have a very cool exterior but an active mind, nonetheless. The son of Halga, Hrothgar’s brother, comes to live with Hrothgar and his wife a kids after his father is killed. The son, Hrothulf, is very quiet, like a Scorpio. The withdrawnness of Hrothulf makes Hrothgar suspicious that Hrothulf might be plotting against him. Wealtheow notices that there is a lot of sadness built up in Hrothulf, she can see, through her motherly eyes, that he is a great deal of pain. Scorpios also do not like to give away secrets, so because of this trait Hrothulf doesn’t like to express emotions or tell other what he is thinking because it could make him seem weak or not able to handle himself.
Hrothulf finds safety in the middle of the woods, talking to trees (and himself). Scorpios love environments like that; places that are dark and sensuous and offer deep feelings. Later on in the chapter Red Horse, Hrothulf’s mentor, explains the revolution he is planning. "If the Revolution comes to grief, it will be because you and those you lead have become alarmed at your own brutality." (Gardner, 117) Hrothulf won’t give away this secret; especially to his passive guardian who thinks (and is very well on the right track) he is trying to sabotage him.
(crab) emotional type, stubborn, seeks safety and closeness.
(lion ) glamour, generosity, organizer, center of attention.
(virgin) precise, differentiates, does what is necessary, utilitarian.
(balance) a sense of beauty and proportion, tactful, seeks balance and harmony.
(scorpion) corrosive, passionate, piercing, extreme situations.
(archer) free spirit , carefree, love of movement, cheerful.
( goat) enduring, has a sense of purpose, proud, ambitious.
( water bearer) communicative, humanitarian, progressive, fraternal.
(fish) sensitive, compassionate, helpful, sociable.