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The Hero's Journey in Beowulf
Transcript of The Hero's Journey in Beowulf
-Beowulf L. 198-209 Departure 2. Refusal of the Call 3. Supernatural Aid 4. The Crossing of the First Threshold 5. The Belly of the Whale Initiation 6. The Road of Trials 7. The Meeting with the Goddess 8. Recognition by the Father 9. Apotheosis 10. The Ultimate Boon Return 11. Refusal of the Return 12. The Magic Flight 13. Rescue from Without 14. The Crossing of the Return Threshold 15. Master of the Two Worlds 16. Freedom to Live The meeting with the goddess
is when Beowulf fights
Grendel's mother. -Beowulf L. 1537-1542 Then the prince of War-Geats, warming to this fight with Grendel's mother, gripped her shoulder and laid about him in a battle frenzy: he pitched his killer opponent to the floor but she rose quickly and retaliated, grappled him tightly in her grim embrace. The supernatural aid is the sword, made by the giants, that Beowulf used to kill Grendel's mother. -Beowulf L. 1557-1568 Then he saw the blade that boded well, a sword in her armoury, an ancient heirloom from the days of the giants, an ideal weapon, one that any warrior would envy, but so huge and heavy of itself only Beowulf could wield it in battle. So the Shieldings' hero, hard-pressed and enraged, took a firm hold of the hilt and swung the blade in an arc, a resolute blow that bit deep into her neck bone and severed it entirely, toppling the doomed house of her flesh; she fell to the floor. The belly of the whale is when Beowulf goes underwater to Grendel's lair. The refusal of the call is
when Hygelac questions
Beowulf's journey. Your undertaking casts my spirits down, I dread the outcome of your expedition and pleaded with you long and hard to leave the killer be, let the South-Danes settle their own blood-feud with Grendel. So God be thanked I am granted this sight of you, safe and sound.
Beowulf L. 1992-1997 The road of trials is when Beowulf fought Grendel, Grendel's mother, and the dragon. Beowulf L. 1492-1496 After these words, the prince of the Weather-Geats was impatient to be away and plunged suddenly: without more ado, he dived into the heaving depth of the lake. It was the best part of the day before he could see the solid bottom. Beowulf L. 1547-1549 Then the prince of the War-Geats, warming to this fight with Grendel's mother, gripped her shoulder and laid about him in a battle frenzy. Fight with Grendel's Mother The captain of evil discovers himself in a handgrip harder than anything he had ever encountered in any man on the face of the earth. Every bone in his body quailed and recoiled, but he could not escape. He was desperate to flee to his den and hide with the devil's litter, for in all his days he had never been clamped or cornered like this.
Beowulf L. 749- 756 Fight with Grendel So the king of the Geats raised his hand and struck hard at the enamelled scales, but scarcely cut through: the blade flashed and slashed yet the blow was far less powerful than the hard-pressed king had need of that at that moment.
Beowulf L. 2575-2580 The crossing of
the first threshold
is when Beowulf
travels from his homeland to the
Danish people. Beowulf L. 210- 223 Time went by, the boat was on water, in those under cliffs. Men climbed eagerly up the gangplank, sand churned in surf, warriors loaded a cargo of weapons, shining war-gear in the vessel's hold, then heaved out, away with a will in their wood-wreathed ship. Over the waves, with the wind behind her and foam at her neck, she flew like a bird until her curved prow had covered the distance and on the following day, at the due hour, those seafarers sighted land, sunlit cliffs, sheer crags and looming headlands, the landfall they sought. Fight with the Dragon Beowulf L. 1174-1176 The recognition by the
father is when King
Hyglec wants to
adopt Beowulf. The bright court of Heorot has been cleansed and know the word is that you want to adopt this warrior as a son. The apotheosis is when Beowulf defeats Grendel and his mother. He is in a state of all knowing and strength. He is somewhat godly because everyone worships him. Beowulf L. 1570-1576 A light appeared and the place brightened the way the sky does when heaven's candle is shinning clearly. He inspected the vault: with sword held high, its hilt raised to guard and threaten, Hygelac's thane scouted by the wall in Grendel's wake. Now the weapon was to prove its worth. The ultimate boon is when Beowulf defeats Grendel's mother and brings Grendel's head back to show the people. Beowulf L. 1647-1649 Grendel's head was hauled by the hair, dragged across the floor where the people were drinking, a horror for both queen and company to behold. Beowulf does not want to fight the dragon because he knows he is going to die. He decides to go anyway. Beowulf L. 2418-2424 He wished good luck to the Geats who had shared his hearth and his gold. He was sad at heart, unsettled yet ready, sensing his death. His fate hovered near, unknowable but certain: it would soon claim his coffered soul, part life from limb. Before long the prince's spirit would spin free from his body. The magic flight is when Beowulf and his army goes to fight the dragon. So the king of the Geats raised his hand and struck hard at the enamelled scales, but scarcely cut through: the blade flashed and slashed yet the blow was far less powerful than the hard-pressed king had need of that at that moment.
Beowulf L. 2575-2580 The rescue from without is when Wiglaf helps Beowulf fight the dragon. Beowulf L. 2604-2610 When he saw his lord tormented by the heat of his scalding helmet, he remember the bountiful gifts bestowed on him, how well he lived among the Waegmundings, the free hold he inherited from his father before him. He could not hold back: one hand brandished the yellow-timbered shield, the other drew his sword. The crossing of the return threshold is when Beowulf dies while fighting the dragon. Beowulf L. 2675-2676 Beowulf shared with him once his own had shattered in sparks and ashes. The master of two worlds is when Beowulf is recognized as a hero in both Denmark and Geatland. Beowulf L. 2207-2212 So that afterwards the wise kingdom reverted to Beowulf. He ruled it well for fifty winters, grew old and wise as warden of the land until one began to dominate the dark, a dragon on the prowl. The freedom to live is when even after death Beowulf remains a hero to his people. Beowulf L. 3178-3182 So the Geat people, his hearth companions, sorrowed for the lord that had been laid low. They said that all of the kings above the earth he was the man most gracious and fair-minded, kindest to his people and keenest to win fame.