What did Hrothgar name his meadhall and why?

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sciftw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Hrothgar named his mead hall Heorot.  In the old English, Heorot means "hart."  The first time that I heard that, I thought "hart" was referring to the organ that pumps blood throughout the body.  You know . . . heart.  That is NOT what "hart" means.  "Hart" is an old term for "stag," which is a male deer.  

The name makes sense when you think about who eats and parties there.  The room itself is a big dining hall and meeting hall in one.  It's a place where the men gather to do manly stuff like eat what they just killed.  What kind of men?  Well, the "manly men" of course.  The hunters, warriors, rulers, etc.  And what do those kind of guys do when not battling man eating spawns of Satan like Grendel? Well they do things like hunt the most noble, proud, and majestic creature ever set forth on the planet.  They hunt deer.  Male deer.  They hunt Heorot.  

What can I say, it's a better name than Bambi. 

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Beowulf

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