Christian and Pagan elements in Beowulf Major pagan beliefs found in Beowulf are: The uncertainty of existence; the poem jumps forward and backward in time to represent man s ability to come to terms with the uncertainties of life by trying to keep both past and future in view. That all men are in the hands of fate (wyrd). The Viking funeral (putting the body on a boat and sending it out to sea or burning the body). None of the characters possess hope (i.e. no hope in an afterlife) Belief in old stone gods - stone (idols) and multiple gods Christian characteristics in the poem: All of the men are monotheistic. God is often praised God of the Old Testament. There are many allusions to the stories of the OT such as Cain and Abel, the Great Flood, etc. The monsters are referred to as heathens.
The poem Beowulf is a renowned story that displays many different surroundings and religious beliefs. Some may believe the story of Beowulf portrays pagan beliefs or customs and others believe that the poem is more in agreement with Christian ethnicity. The author of Beowulf uses both Christian and pagan elements in the poem to define the heroic warrior, Beowulf, and the evil dragons. After reading Beowulf the author clearly shows how Beowulf is a man who is filled with Christian customs and is willing to die and defend the world against evil using the help of God.
Beowulf pagan vs christian essay
I really like how you used Grendel to contrast the two sets of values shown in Beowulf. Your point proves that although the oral tradition of Beowulf was Pagan, the written version was clearly done by a Christian.