Beowulf Slays the Dragon Then Wiglaf advanced through the death-fumes, wore his helmet to help his lord. He spoke these words: "Dear Beowulf, may you accomplish all well, as you did in youth, as I have heard tell. Don't surrender the glory of your life. Defend now, with all your strength, your brave deeds. I will help." After these words the dragon angrily came; the terrible spirit another time attacked with surging fire. Fire waves burned Wiglaf's shield down to the handle, his mail could not protect the young spear-warrior. He ducked behind his kinsman's shield. Then the war-king remembered past deeds, struck mightily with his sword so that it stuck in the dragon's head; Naegling, the great sword of Beowulf, ancient and shining, broke, failed in battle. Fate had not granted that the iron sword would help. (I've heard that Beowulf's swing was too strong for any sword, overstrained any blade, anytime he carried a blood-hardened sword into battle.) Then the terrible dragon a third time rushed, hot and battle-grim. He bit Beowulf's neck with sharp tusks--Beowulf was wet with life's blood; blood gushed in waves. Then, I've heard, Wiglaf showed courage, craft and bravery, as was his nature--he went not for the thought-seat, but struck a little lower, helped his kinsman though his hand was burned. The sword, shining and ornamented, drove in so that the fire abated. Then the king controlled his senses, drew his battle knife, bitter and battle sharp, which he carried on his mail, and cut the dragon through the middle. The enemy fell--strength had driven out life; the two kinsmen, together, had cut down the enemy. So should a warrior do. That was Beowulf's last victory; his last work in this world.