|Type of paper:||Essay|
|Categories:||Culture Society Character analysis Beowulf|
What makes an individual regarded as a hero is different for everyone; to others, it may be because of the bravery the person showed by overcoming and surviving insurmountable obstacles. Thus when asked who your hero is, the right answer may be challenging to reach. Therefore, a hero can be defined as a legendary or mythological figure akin to divine descent and endowed with great strength and ability to do extraordinary things. This refers to an exact illustration o of a warrior, a person who is admired for noble qualities and achievements. Furthermore, he is a person who has demonstrated courageous acts apart from being the principal male character in a literary work. Consequently, the hero embodies an essential figure in an event or a period.
The evolution of a hero in terms of socio-political or cultural changes can be based on many different principals or qualities coming from the environment from where the individual was born and bred. This text endeavors to compare three heroes spanning from various historical and ancient times (Fuhrer, 63). The first comes from the Anglo-Saxon period known as Beowulf; the second is Achilles, a great warrior from the Greek and finally Aeneas from the line of royalty during the Roman period (Gwara, 32). Undeniably, the three heroes come from different historical times with various past events that made each a hero on their own.
From the story of Beowulf, he only believed in the existence of one god whom he allowed to control his fate by all standards. Together with a group of young men, Beowulf traveled to Denmark to help the king (Hrothgar) kill Grandel, a horrific demon. Grandel was a demon that used to terrorize the king's dynasty, and he resided in the kingdom swampland (Fuhrer, 65). Due to his great strength, Beowulf's bravery to kill the demon spread as bushfire to the lands. In the story, Beowulf did not stage the war to be identified as and given the honor, but he was seen to fight for the interest of his people. Like Beowulf, Achilles is also considered a hero with great strengths. However, the similarity ends in both having great powers. As opposed to Beowulf, Achilles used his strength to gain glory by thinking of himself while expecting rewards through honor and gifts for his success (Gwara, 34). When Achilles was given a chance to choose his fate, he did not allow God to choose for him but took it by himself to chat his destiny. Lastly, Aeneas is also regarded as a great hero in the roman community due to his caring for the plight of his people (Gwara, 37). He demonstrated his care to his people by fighting for them after they had lost almost everything. His bravery and service to the community were culminated by helping his people to fight and rebuild what was taken from them. His similarity to Achilles is that he believed in the existence of many gods he called upon to intervene.
Beowulf and Aeneas portray a significant similarity because they are seen as heroes who care for their people. They fought for their people and reestablished what was destroyed; besides, they had trust in their gods while, at the same time, none expected to honor and glory for what they accomplished (King, 52). On the other hand, Achilles is unlike Beowulf or Aeneas because he is portrayed as one who cares for himself. In his quest to stage a war, he did it for recognition and glorification, and he accepted both. However, the three Beowulf, Aeneas, and Achilles are regarded as great historical heroes who helped and shaped their cultures and subsequently, ours.
Fuhrer, Therese. "Aeneas: A study in character development." Greece & Rome 36.1 (1989): 63-72. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/greece-and-rome/article/aeneas-a-study-in-character-development/C626708C78837A6ADB891C91AAFF2650
Gwara, Scott. Heroic identity in the world of Beowulf. Brill, 2008. https://books.google.co.ke/books/about/Heroic_Identity_in_the_World_of_Beowulf.html?id=_6ULAQAAMAAJ&redir_esc=y
King, Katherine Callen. Achilles: Paradigms of the war hero from Homer to the Middle Ages. Univ of California Press, 1991. https://www.amazon.com/Achilles-Katherine-Callen-King/dp/0520074076
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