An analysis of the pagan and christian influences in the play beowulf

Overview[ edit ] A narrative is a telling of some true or fictitious event or connected sequence of events, recounted by a narrator to a narratee although there may be more than one of each. Narratives are to be distinguished from descriptions of qualities, states, or situations, and also from dramatic enactments of events although a dramatic work may also include narrative speeches. A narrative consists of a set of events the story recounted in a process of narration or discoursein which the events are selected and arranged in a particular order the plot. The category of narratives includes both the shortest accounts of events for example, the cat sat on the mat, or a brief news item and the longest historical or biographical works, diaries, travelogues, and so forth, as well as novels, ballads, epics, short stories, and other fictional forms.

An analysis of the pagan and christian influences in the play beowulf

Some Heathens also adopt ideas from the archaeological evidence of pre-Christian Northern Europe and from recorded folk tales and folklore from later periods in European history.

An analysis of the pagan and christian influences in the play beowulf

Snook, Thad Horrell, and Kirsten Horton argued that in doing so, these Heathens ignore the fact that most of them are whiteand thus members of the same ethnic community which has perpetrated and benefitted from colonial and imperial policies against indigenous communities in the Americas and elsewhere.

This is more commonly rendered as Asatru in North America, with practitioners being known as Asatruar.

Aristotle and Augustine

The three figures are interpreted as Odin, Thor, and Freyr, deities which have seen their veneration revived among modern Heathens. The historian of religion Mattias Gardell noted that there is "no unanimously accepted theology" within the Heathen movement.

As part of this framework, humanity's world—known as Midgard —is regarded as just one of nine realms, all of which are part of a cosmological world tree called Yggdrasil.

Different types of being are believed to inhabit these different realms; for instance, humans live on Midgard, while dwarves live on another realm, elves on another, giants on another, and the divinities on two further realms.

Fantasy Counterpart Culture - TV Tropes

These figures spin wyrdwhich refers to the actions and interrelationships of all beings throughout the cosmos. Those who adopt the former perspective have thus criticized Lokeans as effeminate and sexually deviant. The painted tablet at the back depicts Sunnathe two larger wooden idols Odin left and Frey right.

In front of them there are the three Norns, and in the front row a red Thor and other idols. In front of the cult images are two ritual hammers. Priests are often termed godhiwhile priestesses are gydhja, adopting Old Norse terms meaning "god-man" and "god-woman" respectively, with the plural term being gothar.

It is sometimes used to express a particular affinity with the god Thor, although is also often used as a symbol of Heathenism as a whole, in particular representing the resilience and vitality of the religion. The gods are invoked and requests expressed for their aid, as the priest uses a sprig or branch of an evergreen tree to sprinkle mead onto both statues of the deities and the assembled participants.

This procedure might be scripted or largely improvised. Finally, the bowl of mead is poured onto a fire, or onto the earth, as a final libation to the gods.

SparkNotes: Beowulf: Themes

During this process, toasts are made, as are verbal tributes to gods, heroes, and ancestors. Then, oaths and boasts promises of future actions might be made, both of which are considered binding on the speakers due to the sacred context of the sumbel ceremony.

Drumming is then performed to induce an altered state of consciousness in the practitioner, who goes on a meditative journey in which they visualise travelling through the world tree to the realm of Hel.In Augustine's City of God, he attacks pagan culture and its pantheon of gods, blaming them for the decadence of society.

It is Augustine's ideas that we see in Beowulf, tempering the heroic arrogance of the great warrior. Beowulf illustrates numerous biblical references and Christian influences, while simultaneously reflecting a core of Germanic pagan customs.

Christianity and its religious elements, alongside, pagan customs and practices, play a fundamental role in the heroic poem, Beowulf’s narrative.

As a member, you'll also get unlimited access to over 75, lessons in math, English, science, history, and more. Plus, get practice tests, quizzes, and personalized coaching to help you succeed.

Aug 21,  · Professor Awesome talks about the enormously complex issue of the date of Beowulf and what that tells us about Christian and pagan elements in the poem.

Ideas from the Field

Though still an old pagan story, Beowulf thus came to be told by a Christian poet. The Beowulf poet is often at pains to attribute Christian thoughts and motives to his characters, who frequently behave in distinctly un-Christian ways.

In addition, the pagan concept of fate becomes rather hopelessly confused with God's will, so that sometimes Beowulf (and the narrator) seems to believe he can affect fate through his courage, while at others either Beowulf or the .

Christian Elements in Beowulf