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Epic hero Comparison

VillarrealBritish LiteratureMrs. DeLong11 October 2000(Beowulf Analysis)Epic Hero ComparisonIt is very odd that two men who appear so different can be as similar as Beowulf and Achilleus. They each have a distinct code of honor, an avid need for recognition of their deeds, and both victorious over the enemies they encounter in their epic battles.Beowulf and Achilleus’ codes of honor are somewhat similar in that they both occur while in battle. For Beowulf, this happens before the battle with the rudimentary beast known as Grendel. Beowulf decides not to use weapons to fight the beast because Grendel does not use weapons, and Beowulf wants the fight to remain fair.Likewise, Achilleus’ moment of honor occurs during his battle with Hektor. In this battle, Achilleus and Hektor come to an agreement that the winner will keep the loser’s armor, but will give the corpse back to the family and not defile the body.Both Beowulf and Achilleus keep their word of honor and are victorious. This example shows that honor is a major component of being an epic hero.The need for recognition of the valiant deeds and victories is what gives the epic hero his desire for fame, a plethora of fortune, and glory that will survive even after his death. Beowulf displays this when he kills Grendel by wresting off the arm of the beast and taking it to Mead Hall where it is hung as a trophy of his victory. “No Dane doubted the victory, for the proof hanging high from the rafters where Beowulf had hung it, was the Monster’s Arm, claw and shoulder and all.”Beowulf Again, gains fame and glory when he kills the mother of Grendel, brings back the head of Grendel, and keeps the hilt of the giant’s jeweled sword. While parading both of these items around as trophies for throngs of people to see, he gains his fame and glory.Consequently, achieving fame and glory is also an important goal to Achilleus. Achilleus loathes Hektor for ki...

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