Weiss–Beowulf Geats

Geats Also called the Weather-Geats. Warrior tribe who reside in Southern Sweden.
Hrethel King of the Geats. Beowulf’s grandfather. Beowulf is raised by Hrethel and eventually inherits his sword Naegling and his mailshirt and helmet. Hrethel dies of grief when his oldest son Herebeald accidently kills his younger brother Haethcyn.
Herebeald Oldest son of Hrethel. He never gets to rule as king because he is accidentally killed by his younger brother Haethcyn.
Haethcyn Hrethel’s second-born son who accidentally kills his older brother Herebeald. He will rule briefly after Hrethel dies; then Hygelac becomes king.
Hygelac King of the Geats when the story opens. Hrethel’s third son. Beowulf’s uncle. Married to Hygd.
Hygd Hygelac’s wife and Queen of the Geats. Even though she is young, she is a “good” queen and is contrasted to “bad” Queen Modthryth. Beowulf gives her the Brosings’ necklace when he returns to Geatland after killing Grendel and Grendel’s mother.
Heardred Only son of Hygelac and Hygd. Inherits the throne when Hygelac dies but is not a strong king. He is killed by the Swedish King Onela. Beowulf avenges his death by killing Onela and then becomes (finally) King of the Geats.
Ecgtheow Beowulf’s father, married to Hrethel’s only daughter. He is banished from Geatland when he kills a Wulfing warrior named Heatholaf. He then sails to Daneland (Denmark), where his wergild is paid by the newly-crowned King of the Danes, Hrothgar.
Beowulf Protagonist and epic hero of the poem. Prince of the Geats when the story opens. Grandson of Hrethel. “Good” nephew of Hygelac (contrast to the Danish “bad” nephew Hrothulf). Has the strength of thirty men in each hand. Defeats Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and the Dragon. Rules Geatland for fifty years. Mortally wounded by the Dragon.
Eofor Kills Swedish King Ongentheow and is rewarded with marriage to the only daughter of Geatish King Hygelac and Queen Hygd.
Wiglaf Beowulf’s first cousin. Their fathers were brothers. He is the only Geat warrior who doesn’t abandon Beowulf on the battlefield and he helps him defeat the dragon. Becomes King after Beowulf dies, but he prophesies that Geatland will be overrun by its enemies once they learn that (1) Beowulf is dead and (2) his thanes abandoned him in battle.
Hondscio The only Geat soldier killed by Grendel.
Breca Beowulf’s childhood friend who defeats him in a swimming contest.

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