Beowulf How Was Fate Understood in Anglo Saxon Society Reflective Paper

A robust paragraph for each question, 5 questions total


answer all three general question in a robust paragraph and then choose one of the three excerpt groupings and answer those two questions in a second robust paragraph. 


  1. Why is it significant that an Anglo-Saxon poem, written in Old English in England, describes events across the ocean in Scandinavia?
  2. What elements can you point to in the excerpts of this poem that tell us about the place of Christianity in early Anglo-Saxon society (probably around 600-800 AD)?
  3. What “pagan” elements do you see in this poem? Please give specific examples.

Excerpt 1 and 2

  1. What does the description of the mead hall tell us about Anglo-Saxon culture and how society was structured?
  2. What does the description of Grendel tell us about Anglo-Saxons values and beliefs?

Excerpt 3, 4, 5

  1. What do these two excerpts tell us about the ideal Anglo-Saxon hero and the values they esteemed?
  2. How was “fate” understood in Anglo-Saxon society?

Excerpt 6 and 7

  1. What does the description of Hrothgar and Queen Wealthow’s response to Beowulf’s victory over Grendel tell us about the structure of Anglo-Saxon society and the role of material wealth?
  2. What does the cremation ceremony tell us about Anglo-Saxon values and/or religious beliefs?