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Beowulf and Roland - Essay Example

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Summary to essay on topic "Beowulf and Roland"
Both Beowulf and Roland share the idea of struggling to save humanity. This is shown when Beowulf fights the dragon with one soldier. Roland shows this when he fights the Saracens without calling Charlemagne back until their…
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Download file "Beowulf and Roland" to see previous pages... Roland and Beowulf both wanted to struggle to save humanity. Roland, as a warrior for Charlemagne, believed that the Muslims were working against God. The Christian God dominated the story of The Song of Roland. Humanity for Roland was united under the Christian God. Borey (2001) suggests “ The spirit is very much that of the Crusades,
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a period in which the Catholic Church had become strong and ambitious enough to mount a series of determined campaigns in the Holy Land.” For humanity to exist in The Last Song of Roland it must be united under a Christian ruler. Humanity needed Jesus Christ. This theory is shown after Roland dies. At the end of the story, the Muslim queen is baptized a Christian.
Beowulf also wanted to struggle to unite humanity. Although this story does not have as much Christianity, Beowulf felt the need to unite humanity. Although not his fight, Beowulf leaves his kingdom to fight for Heorot. One point of view is:
Beowulf stands up as protector of something much deeper than the mere surface expectations of the reader for bravery and honor; he passionately fights to protect the deep solidarity that Heorot represents for humanity. Viewing Grendel’s assault on this human solidarity, we must conclude that the value of the hall regarding international relations and the power of the human spirit is that for which Beowulf must so ardently fight. (Young 2006)
The monster attacking Heorot was trying to divide humanity. The hall was where soldiers, their wives, and probably children held banquets, slept in for protection, and lived in as a home. The story confirms this belief:
When Grendel attacked the hall, the inhabitants scattered. In order to be safe from Grendel, the soldiers and their families split up to find refuge anywhere. This would eventually destroy humanity. Without a social circle, humanity might have even died out due to lack of contact.
While many soldiers run away in both stories, both Roland and Beowulf want to ...Download file "Beowulf and Roland" to see next pagesRead More
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As a result of this, many of the verses that clearly indicated its pagan belongings have been changed to ones that point to a Christian frame of reference. The origins of Beowulf remain undoubtedly pagan, however, and the different notions that are held by the characters of the work are influenced and decided by the pagan beliefs of the Norse and the Germanic tribes of the Middle Ages.
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