Beowulf

Hrothgar King of the Danes
Hrunting Name of Beowulf’s sword
Beowulf Young prince of the Geats and sails to the Danish shore
Scop Countries of poet-singers who recited the adventure of Beowulf
Herot Name of the mead hall where the men would congregate and make merry
Wiglaf Name of the warrior who stayed to fight with Beowulf at the end
Grendel Name of the powerful monster that would invade the mead hall and bring death and distruction
Mead Alcoholic beverage served at the hall
Grendel’s mother Kills Hrothgar’s closest friend in attempt to seek revenge
Edgetho Beowulf’s father
How does Beowulf die? Fighting a dragon
What do the Danes do to avoid Grendel? Sleep far from the hall
When does Grendel finally show fear? When he is held fast in Beowulf’s grasp
What do the alliteration and kenning in lines 474-478 of this Old English poem help convey? The fierceness and power of the attack
Why did Beowulf ask Wiglaf to be the next leader? Because he stands with him to fight the dragon; He stayed with him until the end
Which is a universal theme in the epic Beowulf? A good leader is brave and fearless
How does Grendel’s home reflect his evil nature? Grendel lives in a place that is swampy, dark, lonely, and gloomy
Approximately how old is Beowulf when he fights his last battle? 70
As Beowulf fights Grendel’s mother, where are his companions? What are they thinking? Both the Danes and the Geats are sitting and staring into the monster’s lake
Lair A wild animal’s den
Gorge Eat greedily
Talon A claw
Infamous Having a bad reputation
Loathesome Disgusting
Affliction Force that causes suffering
Purge To get rid of something undesirable
Livid Discolored from bruising
Epic A long narrative poem on a serious subject presented in an elevated or formal style
Universal theme Timeless values that apply to any time period
Stock epithets Adjectives that point out special traits of particular persons or things
Kennings Poetic synonyms found in Germanic poems that are used as nouns
Caesura A pause or break in a line of poetry
Diction Writer’s or speaker’s choice of words
Alliteration The repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words
Dialogue A conversation between two or more characters in either fiction or nonfiction
Setting Refers to the time and place in which the action occurs
Plot The sequence of actions and events in a literary work
Theme Underlying message that a writer wants the reader to understand
Read lines 450-458. What specific details suggest that the underwater lair of Grendel’s mother is an evil place? He leaped into the lake, would not wait for anyone’sAnswer; the heaving water covered himOver. For hours he sank through the waves;At last he saw the mud of the bottom.And all at once the greedy she-wolfWho’d ruled those waters for half a hundredYears discovered him, saw that a creatureFrom above had come to explore the bottomOf her wet world. The lair is below the ground, suggesting hell. The text states that Beowulf sank for hours
Reread lines 109-116, in which Beowulf is first introduced. What traits of an epic hero does he appear to possess? List what you see. In his far-off home Beowulf, Higlac’sFollower and the strongest of the Geats-greaterAnd stronger that anyone anywhere in this world-Heard how Grendel filled nights with horrorAnd quickly commanded a boat fitted out, Proclaiming that he’d go to that famous king,Would sail across the sea to Hrothgar,Now when help was needed. High position and a noble birth

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