Beowulf Study Questions

Describe Herot Described in the novel as “the foremost of halls under heaven.” It is very spacious and beautiful. It symbolizes human civilization, culture, joy, etc.
Describe Grendel’s lair. How does it compare to Herot? Described as basically a supernatural lake. It’s filled with monsters and is not very big. Whereas, Herot is beautiful, pleasant, and spacious.
What is the significance of Grendel being descended from Cain? It signifies that Grendel is cursed by God and inclined to commit crimes like this because of his family tree. He’s at odds with Christian civilization.
Why does Grendel attack Herot? I believe the root of Grendel’s problem is him having emotions of sadness, isolation, and envy. He lives by himself, in a cold, dark cave, and is jealous of the Dane’s lifestyle. So he chooses to attack.
What had Herot symbolized before the coming of Grendel? After? Before: Happiness, joy, success.After: Sorrow, defeat, helplessness.
Why is Hrothgar’s lieutenant concerned about the arrival of Beowulf and his men? He’s concerned because he wants credit for the things he’s done. He doesn’t want only Beowulf to get credited.
How does the lieutenant recognize Beowulf as a hero? He gives Beowulf his sword.
Why does Unferth bring up Beowulf’s swimming match with Brecca? How does Beowulf respond? He brings it up to try and make Beowulf appear like less of a hero. They essentially got in a bragging battle. Beowulf tells the story of his heroic adventure.
What is Welthow’s role in Herot? What does the narrator praise her for? She seems to be the peace maker in the story. She doesn’t have a huge role, but she embodies charm and hospitality.
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What are Beowulf’s thoughts as he waits for Grendel’s arrival? He says that he’ll leave God to decide the outcome and he rests.

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