Beowulf Excerpts: Reading Checks

What does Grendel resent about Hrothgar and his men? Grendel resents the happiness and gaiety that the men in the hall experience, which contrasts with his own miserable existence
Why do the Danes leave Herot at night? Grendel attacks at night, so they try to get as far away as possible from the hall then
When Beowulf describes himself in his “resume” what does it reflect about warrior culture? military prowess, leadership, having a respected father, and wisdom
How do Beowulf’s boastsof past deeds and his announcementof his plan establish him as ahero? Beowulf’s acts of greatness, such as slaying a giant show that he is not only successful, but also famous in his deeds
What does Beowulf ask of Hrothgar? Beowulf asks that Hrothgar allow only Beowulf and his crew to defeat the evil
What are the three conditions put forth by Beowulf in his “speech”? That only he and his men would go to fight Grendel. That he would not use swords against Grendel. That should he fail, his armour should be sent back to Higlac, his lord.
What advantage does Beowulf have in his fight with Grendel? Beowulf, as an epic hero possesses near super-natural strength
How does Beowulf’s battle with Grendel end? Beowul rips off Grendel’s arm, claw and shoulder, and then Grendel flees to his lair, where he goes to die.
How do the Danes entice Beowulf to fight Grendel’s mother? gold
Why does Beowulf toss his sword aside in the battle with Grendel’s mother? Because his sword is ineffective
How does Beowulf kill Grendel’s mother? He grabs a magical sword from the wall of the cave and stabs her in the neck
What does Beowulf do after slaying Grendel’s mother? He chops off Grendel’s head
What does Beowulf bring back from the fight with Grendel’s mother? He brings back Grendel’s head, along with the hilt of the magical sword he used to kill the mother
How does Beowulf plan to fight the dragon? He plans to take his shield, armor and sword. Because unlike Grendel, DRAGONS CAN BREATHE FIRE, SO IT WOULD KIND OF BE UNFAIR
How do Beowulf’s companions react when the dragon breathes fire on him? All of the followers, except one (Wiglaf) , fled.
What is the relationship between Beowulf (as king) and the men who accompanied him to the dragon? Beowulf gave these men gifts of armor an weapons in return for their help in battle, with a loyalty that could demand their lives if needed
What is Beowulf’s last request? For Wiglaf to lead the geats, and for a tower to be errected in his memory.

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