The Epic of Beowulf


An epic is a long narrative poem that celebrates a hero’s deeds.

Epics were usually based on historical facts.

  Kennings – a compound word, figure of speech, substituted for the usual name of a person or thing. An example – “the Almighty’s enemy” and “sin-stained demon” are both kennings used to describe Grendel Stock epithets are adjectives used to characterize a person, place, or thing. For example, in Beowulf God is described as “the Lord of all Life” or “the Ruler of glory”. They provide a brief summary of major characters’ most essential qualities.

    Of noble birth or high position and often of great historical or legendary importance Exhibits characteristics that reflect important ideals of his society Performing courageous, sometimes superhuman, deeds that reflect the values of the era Performing actions that often determine the fate of a nation or group of people

     The setting more nation is vast in scope, often involving one or The plot is complicated by super natural beings or events and may involve long and dangerous journeys through foreign lands The dialogue often includes long, formal speeches delivered by major characters The theme reflects timeless values, such as courage & honor, and encompasses universal ideas such as good & evil or life & death The style includes formal diction (choice of words and sentence structure) and a serious tone

  Allusions – references in a work of literature to a well-known person, place, event, written work, or work of art. Beowulf contains numerous biblical allusions. Foreshadowing about plot developments to come later in the story. – the author drops subtle hints This is brief animated version of the epic we will be reading.