The poem “Beowulf” portrays Beowulf’s battle with Grendel as a demonstration of his heroism. He fights Grendel without weapons, and ultimately defeats him by tearing off his arm. This victory is seen as a testament to Beowulf’s strength, skill, and courage, and marks the beginning of his journey as a hero. It also sets up the subsequent battle with Grendel’s mother, and highlights the difference between Beowulf and the previous warriors who failed to defeat Grendel. Beowulf’s victory also serves to emphasize the poem’s themes of heroism, the struggle between good and evil, and the inevitability of death. Grendel’s death sets up the conflict with his mother and the dragon, and Beowulf’s victory is not without cost, as he sustains a wound that will eventually lead to his death.
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