beowulf


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Beowulf – testo- Beowulf

The most famous example of Anglo-Saxon literature survived is Beowulf, a collection of short poems which became a complete story in Northumberland in the 6th century
The story tells the adventures of the Scandinavian hero, Beowulf, who comes from Sweden to help Hrothgar, king of Jutland. Hrotgard built his palace near the sea, but a monster, Grendel, who lives in a sea-cave, devours his thanes. One night, when Grendel appears in the hall, Beowulf fights and kills him. Grendel’s mother tries to take revenge, but Beowulf kills her too.
The second part of the poem opens 50 years later. Beowulf is old, but still strong. He is the wise and loved king of his land. But one day a dragon comes to destroy the country. Beowulf kills the dragon, but dies for the burning breath of the dragon and the story closes with his burial. The stresses and the alliteration which characterize the poem help to memorize the lines. Beowulf is a very important picture of the Saxon life in their early period it shows the important women’s role while, in the Greco-Roman system, men had absolute power. Women could marry only with their own consent and everything they possessed remain their property even after their marriage. They could also rule a kingdom if their husbands died.Beowulf exists in only one manuscript  survived after the destruction of religious artefacts during the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII and a disastrous fire which destroyed the library of Sir Robert Bruce Cotton (1571-1631).The manuscript, now housed in the British Library in London, still bears the scars of the fire. Recently the story has been adapted into a movie, Beowulf, directed by Robert Zemeckis in 2007.

 

Beowulf is the anonymous oldest surviving epic written in Old English before the tenth century A.D.. It describes the adventures of a great Scandinavian warrior of the sixth century.
Beowulf who is called by the king of Heorot, Hrothgar, to free his land from the monster Grendel. Beowulf succeed in killing both Grendel and his monster-mother under a lake where they live. Back to his country, Beowulf becomes the king and rules for fifty years, till he fights and kills another dragon, but dies of the wounds.
This epic poem celebrates the selfless heroism of Beowulf, and highlights values like honour, loyalty and motherly love. It refers to several northern legends already told about Beowa, a half-divine hero, and the monster called Grendel. In some later myth Grendel was depicted as a bear and interpreted as the representation of the malaria of the marsh lands. The poem wants to represent Man’s victory on the hostile forces of nature thanks to his will and perseverance.
Beowulf exists in only one manuscript survived after the destruction of religious artefacts during the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII and a disastrous fire which destroyed the library of Sir Robert Bruce Cotton (1571-1631).The manuscript, now housed in the British Library in London, still bears the scars of the fire.

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