Thursday, February 7, 2008

the fight with Grendel's mum

It seems to me if Grendle's mother is so fierce and so crucial to this part of the tale, that she should be given a proper name. If names are usually given according to the father's name and Grendel has no father, shouldn't his name come down from his mother and not the other way around? I mean if she is a more vicious opponent should she not have her own name or even her own legend as Grendel does. Not only that but the whole confrentation in general seems to not add up. Beowulf's wepondry is no match for her, so it would seem that no one's would be, but yet she houses a wepon that can defete her and displays it in her home. Then there is the issue of Beowulf seeking her out instead of the other way around. This seems to not only break the "avenge" code, but also kind of violates Beowulf's ethos code. Is it that Beowulf doesn't not see her as a threat and there for does not wait for her as he did Grendel? Or is it that Beowulf's sense of urgency got the better of him? To me it is both. It could be that Beowulf doesn't consider Grendel's mother a threat because she is a woman, and there for easily dominated. Also the fact that he just pluges into the conflict with out weighing his opponent seems to support this notion. I don't know, alot of things don't seem reasonable in this battle and therefore make me doubt Beowulf's heroic characteristics.


Megan Becker said...

I think that Grendel's mom isn't given a name simply because she's a woman. Therefore it doesn't make her name important. As for the question about Beowulf seeking her out, Beowulf went after her because I don't think she was going to come back. She came back and killed one of the men simply for revenge and once she got it, she was done. Beowulf went after her, I think, only because she killed someone that was so important to the king. Otherwise, I don't think she would have been seen as a threat and the king wouldn't have sent him out to do anything about it. Just my thoughts! :)

Rocky said...

Why all this talk about Beowulf fight with Grendel's mother being far fetched? None of Beowulf's fights seem believable. From fighting sea monsters in full armor to out matching Grendel's strength to fighting a dragon. You mean to tell me that that 50 foot dragon bit Beowulf in the neck that Beowulf still had the whits to unsheath his knife and attack? If a 50 dragon bites someone's head, he shouldn't have a head left, much less the ability to continue an attack. Also, does it make sense that a young Beowulf would attack Grendel with help, but a 70 year old Beowulf would attack a dragon by himself? I think that Beowulf went up against the dragon wanting to die. What better way to be remembered then being the king faced the dragon in single-combat. That reminds me of the way the elf kings in the Simirilion faced Suron's dark master in single-combat. By the way, they died too.