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What do we learn about Beowulf's character from his speech in lines 365-405 (from...

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srteach | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 15, 2013 at 1:11 AM via web

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What do we learn about Beowulf's character from his speech in lines 365-405 (from Beowulf)?

 

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted July 10, 2013 at 6:27 PM (Answer #1)

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Lines 365 through 405, of Beowulf, contain Wulfgar's request (and Hrothgar's response) to Hrothgar regarding the acceptance of Beowulf's help rid Heorot of Grendel. Beowulf does not actually speak until line 407 when he hails Hrothgar and begins to tell him about his (Beowulf's) renowned history.

Therefore, the lines in question tell of Beowulf's character, but not through Beowulf's own dialogue. Readers do find out that Wulfgar greatly respects Beowulf. He tells Hrothgar that Beowulf is worthy, noble, and powerful. Hrothgar then tells Wulfgar that he has heard of Beowulf and had helped Beowulf's father (Ecgtheow) at one time. Hrothgar readily accepts Beowulf's help.

Wulfgar returns to Beowulf and tells him of Hrothgar's acceptance of him. Wulfgar also tells Beowulf that Hrothgar has heard of his strength and accomplishments. In line 405, Beowulf is being described as beginning to speak to Hrothgar.

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