The Wanderer, from the poem named for him, is a sympathetic character for numerous reasons.
The character is presented as a social creature, as actual humans are. He is without a mead hall (the traditional home of an Anglo-Saxon male), without friends he can talk to and trust, and without a gold lord, without a leader.
His gold lord died and he has been in exile ever since. With no central government, power and might ruled in Anglo-Saxon England. If one mead hall conquered another mead hall, the conquered usually fled and went into exile. His words create an elegy about the past he misses and will never replace.
Now his existence is spent on the cold sea, in wind and snow. He misses his old friends so much that his mind sees them in visions, only to disappoint him when the visions disappear.