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Semantic field of appearance:

Stern-faced men

Glorious in his gold regalia

Carrying decorated shields and shirts of


mail

In beauty

Cheek-hinged helmets and javelins


A grey-haired treasure giver

Admirable
In her gold-trimmed attire
Slick-skinned

Every nail, claw-scale and spur


Gallant man

A woman in grief
With hair bound up

Old lord
Semantic field of character:
Courage

Sick with envy

tender

Greatness

Stronger

kind

Prudent

Sound

loyal

Fighter

Cleverness

loving

Vicious raids and


ravages of Grendel

Quick-tongue

fearful

Queenly

impatient

Dignified

leader

Handsomely structured

prudent

noblest of men

mind untroubled by
envy or malice

A noble warrior-lord
Wise
Loyal
Kindness
A proud warrior
Resolute
Conquering
Friend of the people
Sons of honour

boaster
brutal
fair
generous
open-handed

thoughtful
grievous
furious
honourable
dreaming

Beowulf
Beowulf is the main hero of the poem. He is an embodiment of courage and strength.
He was just a Geatish warrior, but he was the only one who managed to save the
Danes from a dragon called Grendel. Beowulf is described as a man of special
abilities: he has the strength of thirty men, and he is an exceptional swimmer. Both
abilities help him in his battles with Grendel and Grendel's mother. He is not quickly
roused to temper, evidenced in his interactions with Unferth at Hrothgar's court, is
intensely loyal to his king Hygelac, is genuinely committed to the welfare of his
people, is virtuous and believes in Fate, as that which God has ordained for him. He
is not only a brave warrior but a noble King, who is ready to sacrifice himself for the
sake of his people.
Grendel
Grendel is the first dragon that Beowulf baffled. He had been attackeing Hrothgars
kingdom during the twelwe years. Though he has many animal qualities, monstrous
appearance, he seems to be guided by human emotions and impulses. He was exiled
to the swamplands outside the boundarie of human society. He lives with his mother
in the marshes and stalks his victims at night, when he raids the Hall of the Danes,
and kills and kidnaps their warriors. Probably its loneliness and jealousy that made
him cruel. Grendel is malignant by nature and that he has never shown remorse .
He cant be destroyed by any weapons made of iron as he has cast a spell over them,
and is thus killed by Beowulf in a hand-to-hand combat. Grendel loses an arm in the
fight, and escapes to the marshes where he dies.
Hrothgar
Hrothgar is a king of Danes. He is a wise and experienced ruler. He is already old, but
when he was young he was a brave warrior who always was ready to defend his
people. Many years earlier, Hrothgar paid money to the Wulfings to resolve a blood
feud they had with Ecgtheow, Beowulf's father. As a result, Beowulf feels some
loyalty toward Hrothgar. He is a father figure to Beowulf and a model for the kind of
king that Beowulf becomes.
Wiglaf
He is the only one who was with Beowulf in a battle against the dragon, he is the
Geats' future king and a symbol of loyalty. Due to the Wiglafs support Beowulf is
able to defeat the dragon. As Beowulf is dying, he gives his golden necklace, called a
torque, to Wiglaf, probably symbolizing the transfer of power from the dying king to

his chosen successor. Wiglaf is brave, loyal and courageous. He is a real friend and
the embodiment of sincere feelings.
Grendel's mother
Although she is not as powerful as her son, she is a formidable foe. She and her son
live in a cave beneath a swampy lake. As any other mother she wants to revenge for
her sons death. She manages to kill just one man and goes back to her swamp where
she is killed.
Breca
He is a friend from Beowulfs childhood. He and Beowulf engaged in a swimming
contest against each other as adolescents ,where they take on the open sea while
wearing full armor and carrying swords, supposedly to defend themselves from sea
monsters. Beowulf lost.
Unferth
Unferth is a warrior in the tribe of the Spear-Danes. He is famous for his sin, he has
killed his brothers. He hasnt done anything great himself despite he was clever and
witty. But it was he, who gave Beowulf a magic sword to baffle Grendels mother.
This shows that Unferth was generous, because his intentions to help were sincere but
he couldnt imagine that the sword wont help.
Wealhtheow
She is a queen of Spear Danes and a wife of Hrothgar. One of Wealhtheow's most
important duties is the ceremonial carrying of a goblet of mead around to the warriors
during the feast, helping to establish a tone of brotherly affection between the Geats
and Danes. She worries about the future of the Danish kingdom especially after her
husbands death. Her only long speech in the poem is a subtle plea to Beowulf to
defend the rights of her young sons, Hrethric and Hrothmund, to the throne. She
seems to worry that a great warrior like Beowulf might decide to take the throne for
himself.

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