Essay, Research Paper: Beowulf And Macbeth

Literature: Beowulf

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Warrior, gladiator, knight, or soldier, what ever you call it, they are the ones
that do the dirty work in a certain society. A warrior is a defined as a man
engaged in or experienced in warfare; one devoted to military life. You can say
that Beowulf was a good warrior because, he was fearless, proud, well respected,
and had a sense of duty to society. Therefore both Beowulf and Macbeth, have
characteristics of a good warrior. A good warrior is fearless and would take up
any challenge that is offered to him/her, even if the task leads to death or
personal injury, they would fight no matter what. When Beowulf fought the dragon
he was fearless, and even fought without any weapons, "I'd use no sword, no
weapon, if this beast could be killed without it, crushed to deathlike Grendel,
gripped in my hands and torn limb from limb. But his breath will be burning hot;
poison will pour from his tongue. I feel no shame, with shield and armor,
against this monster: when he comes to me" This is a good example of a
brave and fearless warrior, which fights with enthusiasm and devotion, even
thought he know the outcome could be hot poison. Beowulf had lots of confidence
in himself as he states, "Grendel is no braver, no stronger, than I am! I
could kill him with my sword; I shall not." This is a good example of how a
good warrior has self-confidence, and would never turn down a fight. In Macbeth,
even though he is near his last battle, he is still confident during his almost
last battle, as he talks with confidence to Young Siward, "No, nor more
fearful." He is saying to the Young Siward, he is still fearless, and as a
good warrior would do, try to scare his opponent. A good warrior also has
self-respect for himself or herself and also has honor for his/her own name. As
Beowulf says, "He who can earn it should fight for the glory of his
name." This is a good example of how Beowulf lives up to his name, as every
good warrior does. A good warrior is well respected by fellow warriors, society,
and higher authorities. In Shakespeare's Macbeth, the Sergeant tells Duncan,
"For brave Macbeth, --well he deserves that name." Fellow warriors
also respect Beowulf and friends even after his death they respect him as they
mourn his death by saying, "And so Beowulf's followers rode, mourning their
beloved leader, crying that no better king had ever lived, no prince so mild, no
man so open to his people, so deserving of praise." This is a good example
on how good warriors are well respected and praised by fellow warriors. Good
warriors give a sense of duty to the society, and accomplish what is needed to
be done to keep their kingdom or society happy. In Macbeth, Macbeth states his
loyalty to his throne and his sense of duty to the state, "The service and
the loyalty I owe, in during it, pays itself. Your highness, part is to receive
our duties; and our duties are to your throne and the state, children and
servants; which do but what should, by doing everything safe toward your love
and honour." Beowulf is also a good example of a warrior who follows the
duties needed to keep society happy, as he states "Anything I can do, here
on this earth, to earn your love, oh great king, anything more than I have done,
battles I can fight in your honor, summon me, I will come as I came once
before." In this example Beowulf is stating that he would give anything to
protect the kingdom and anytime they need him he would be there for them. This
is the sense of duty that Macbeth and Beowulf give to their kingdom and state,
and all good warriors have this characteristic. I conclude that a good warrior
is fearless, proud, well respected, and had a sense of duty to society. Beowulf
and Macbeth are good examples of a good warrior because of their heroic
characteristics and attitude. They are very well respected and known for their
actions, and therefore they have and also created some characteristics of a good

1. Raffel, Burton. Beowulf. Penguins Books USA Inc., New York, USA, 1963. 2.
Shakespeare, William. Macbeth. Coles Book USA Inc., New York, USA, 1992
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