English IV: Beowulf

Who is the king of the Danes? What is the name of his mead hall? King Hrothgar; Herot is meadhall
Who is the monster? From whom is he said to be descended? Grendel is monster; he descends from Cain
How many men does the monster kill on his first attack? 30
What do Hrothgar’s warriors do after the assault? First they fight; then they flee leaving Herot unguarded
How long does the hall stand deserted? 12 years
Though he returns nightly, why doesn’t the monster dare to touch the king’s throne? Throne is protected by God (Christian)
Who is Hrothgar’s father? Healfdane
Who decides to come to help Hrothgar? Where is he from? Beowulf is from Sweden, or Geatland
Who does Hrothgar send to greet the hero? His thane Wulfgar
Who is Beowulf’s king? How is Beowulf related to his king? King Higlac is Beowulf’s uncle
Summarize Beowulf’s words to Hrothgar at lines 142-159 Beowulf asks to be allowed to face the monster alone with his men and that his armor be returned to his people if he dies
How does Beowulf intend to defeat Grendel? With his bare hands
Why does Unferth challenge Beowulf? Unferth is jealous
What story does Unferth relate about Beowulf? To whom does Unferth attribute the victory? Swimming race with Brecca. He names Brecca the winner.
What is Beowulf’s version of the story? Beowulf says a storm drove him into the clutches of monsters which he killed, making the sea safe for all men.
What unpardonable sin does Beowulf accuse Unferth of? Unferth is said to have killed his own kinsman
Who is the queen of the Danes? Welthow
Why can’t the swords of men hurt the monster? Some magic protects him
What was hung in Herot as a sign of victory? Grendel’s arm
Who attacks Herot next? Who dies? Grendel’s mother kills Hrothgar’s best friend
What is the name of Beowulf’s sword? Hrunting
What saved Beowulf from being killed by the second monster? His helmet and mail shirt
How does Beowulf finally defeat this second foe? He finds and uses a magical sword made by giants
What does Beowulf do to Grendel’s corpse? He cuts off Grendel’s head and keeps it as a trophy
What becomes of Beowulf after he leaves Denmark? He becomes king of the Geats
What will Beowulf fight in the final battle? A dragon
In lines 668-679, what change has Beowulf undergone that is markedly different from the young man he once was? He is not as confident; he will not fight unarmed
What happened to Beowulf’s famous sword? It failed him and broke. His shield melted.
What did Beowulf’s followers do during the battle? Beowulf’s thanes desert him.
Who remained behind with Beowulf? What does he swear to do? Only Wiglaf remains. He swears to lead the Geats.
What does Beowulf ask of Wiglaf before he dies? He asks that they build him a burial tower so that he will not be forgotten

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