An epic poem is “a long narrative poem in elevated style presenting characters of high position in a series of adventures which form and organic whole through their development of episodes important to the history of a nation or race” (handout: Epic). An epic consists of six characteristics: The first characteristic is that the “hero is a figure of imposing stature and a great historical or legendary significance” (handout: Epic). Second is based on the setting and the fact that it is “vast in scope”. Thirdly the “action must consist of deeds of great valor or requiring superhuman courage” (handout: Epic). The fourth characteristics deal with supernatural forces, meaning Go
The fifth one consists of the "style of sustained elevation and grand simplicity" (handout: Epic). Not only is he faced with evil creatures, but he is also looked after by God. " "this is one favor you should not refuse me"I, alone and with the help of my men, may purge all evil from this hall"the monster"tms scorn of men is so great that he needs no weapons and fears non"(Language of literature 38). He is looked up upon by everyone, for his courage in fighting demons and protecting the people from evil. Yet, one of the greatest reasons as to why "Beowulf" is considered an epic poem is because it is a parallel to that of the events in the Bible. "Grendel ruled, fought with the righteous, one against many, and won; so Herot stood empty , and stayed deserted for years, twelve winters of grief for Hrothgar" (Raffel 27). "Beowulf" by Burton Raffel (the person who translated the book) portrays the six characteristics of an epic poem; therefore, making Beowulf and epic poem. His actions consist of deeds of great valor, for he is willing to risk his life in order to save the lives of those in the nation. He is a hero to those around him, who see a man that has relieved them from evil. By wanting to kill Grendel without any weapons proves the strength and faith he has in himself; proving, that God is by his side and God"tms fate in Beowulf will help him fight Grendel and slay him. In "Beowulf," Beowulf is considered the hero who has a figure of high status. Lastly, the epic poem recounts the deeds of his heroes with objectivity. The twelve years refers to the twelve apostles, which were twelve men chosen by Jesus they lived and worked with Jesus during His Ministry.