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Published: 19-10-2019

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Good vs. Evil as found in “Beowulf”

In the epic “Beowulf,” there is a continual struggle between very good and evil. This poem is an early instance of the phrase, “Bad guys never ever win.” Examples of this theme include: God versus Cain, Beowulf versus Grendal, and Beowulf versus Grendal’s mother.

The first battle amongst God (great) and Cain (evil) is truly an allusion from the bible. This story of Cain is utilised to evaluate God’s feelings of Grendal, a descendant of Cain. The book states, “…Since Cain had killed his only / Brother, slain his father’s son / With an angry sword. God drove him off, / outlawed him…” (Beowulf, 1261 – 1264). Cain killed his brother since he was evil and God shunned and marked him for his evilness. God has the exact same feelings for Grendal.

Grendal is described as a vicious monster that is an offspring of everything evil. Grendal is so evil God refuses to forgive Grendal and favors Beowulf’s pride more than Grendal’s sins. In the battle between Beowulf and Grendal, God grants Beowulf overwhelming victory. The book states, “the Ruler of the heavens brought about a proper problem, when when more he stood up with ease.” God can stand with ease since the beast he hates, Grendal, is dead.

Beowulf is a mighty, honorable hero who has super strength and the ego to match his strength. Beowulf defeats Grendal with his bare hands and then he forced to fight Grendal’s vengeful mother. Tired and torn, Beowulf, by way of his goodness, is in a position to vanquish Grendal’s mother. At the break of exhaustion, Beowulf grabs a monstrous sword and the book continues, “he struck furiously…the blade went straight by means of the doomed physique.”

The epic poem Beowulf encompasses all aspects of a great tale. Beowulf, God, and Wiglaf represent very good in the poem whereas Grendal, his mother, and Cain portray the contrasting side of evil. All through the epic poem “Beowulf” there are several examples of great versus evil.
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