Beowulf is an Anglo-Saxon poem, named after the main character. The old English poem tells us about the victory of Beowulf over the terrible monster Grendel and over the dragon that devastated the country.
The author of the poem remains unknown. Researchers state that some legends are probably brought by Angles and Saxons from the homeland, but in the form in which it is preserved, the poem bears undoubted traces of the later Christian treatment.
Thus, the poem Beowulf is the oldest significant monument of folk poetry of the Germans. Now, it’s available in one single manuscript.
If your professor asked you to write a Beowulf essay, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, you will find an advice on how to write a paper on the poem and sample questions that would ease your writing.
Tip #1. Carefully read the poem.
Maybe it is one of the most obvious Beowulf essay tips, but you must read the poem to get a clear understanding of the source under review.
Reading just critical review and short summaries of the plot won’t be enough to write a good paper. Use active reading strategies that will help you to increase the text comprehension.
Tip #2. Pick up the topic.
Here are some Beowulf essay questions that will help you to master your paper:
- What are the key components of Beowulf as an epic poetry? Compare and contrast Beowulf to Homer’s Odyssey or Iliad, or Aeneid by Virgil.
- Describe similarities like a long form poem, a heroiс figure, a presence of a supernatural being, etc.
- How does the poem of Beowulf compare to its numerous interpretations? Explore characters of Grendel and Beowulf, storylines and visual interpretations of scenes and characters in different interpretations.
- Who is your favorite character in the poem? If you’re looking for Beowulf essay topics for your character analysis, select one of them and discuss their features. Analyze their development throughout the novel.
- How would the poem look if it were told from dragon’s or King Hrothgar’s point of view? Explain why the third-person narrator’s point of view is important.
- What is the role of courage in the poem? Provide examples when Beowulf fights the monster.
- What does Beowulf and Grendel’s fight symbolize? Is he fighting just for courage or for all humanity? Include evidence to support your ideas.
- What do the mead hall and the cave symbolize? Why are these symbols important for the story?
Tip #3. Write your essay while keeping a logical flow.
Once you’ve finished with your topic research and created a Beowulf essay thesis statement, start writing your paper. Focus on the key issue of the essay and make a list of key points you’re going to discuss.
First, write an introduction that will catch the readers’ attention and contains the thesis statement. Then represent your detailed ideas in the essay body.
Don’t forget to separate the body into sections. This will ease the navigation for your readers. In the Beowulf essay conclusion, summarize the key points of the paper.
Tip #4. Revise your text.
The revision is one of the most underestimated parts of the essay writing. Although, it can save you from getting bad marks because of spelling and grammar mistakes. Look through the paper and make sure that it is error-free. You can ask your friends or relatives to proofread the essay.
If you’re struggling to find topics for your Beowulf essay or ideas to add to it, check the free samples of high-quality papers to get inspiration!