Where would a poem like Beowulf been performed?

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Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There is some debate among scholars that the epic poem Beowulf was ever part of the oral tradition, but on the other hand, many medieval literature professors would argue strongly for the poem being part of an extensive oral story-telling history, pointing to the phrasing, cadence, and use of memory cues within the text as evidence that large parts of Beowulf were handed down over generations. 

Certainly many of the events in the epic poem were borrowed from legends or songs that would have been sung or performed, and these legends would have been recited around campfires, in circles from village to village, or in mead halls similar to Hrodgar's that belonged to local noble families.