Beowulf Study Guide Test Answers

question

What is a literary character that embodies the values of his/her culture?
answer

Epic Hero
question

Who, most likely, wrote Beowulf? (based on what is known about literature during the middle ages)
answer

A monk
question

What is the name for an Anglo-Saxon entertainer who performed songs of heroes?
answer

scops
question

What does Beowulf gain from the battle with the dragon?
answer

treasure, glory, and fame
question

In lines 462-464 the narrator remarks, “So fame comes to the men who mean to win it and care about nothing else!” This occurs during which of Beowulf’s battles?
answer

Beowulf’s battle with Grendel’s mother
question

In lines 184-186, which character says, “A soldier should know the difference between words / And deeds, and keep that knowledge clear / In his brain.”
answer

The soldier from the dales who Beowulf first meets
question

In the Biblical allusion in line s19-29, which biblical figure is Grendel compared to/descended from?
answer

Cain
question

What do we know about the religion of the person who wrote Beowulf?
answer

They practiced mainly Christian beliefs with some pagan influences
question

What language was Beowulf written in?
answer

The vernacular of the region and time period
question

Why did Beowulf set out to fight Grendel?
answer

For glory and fame
question

Why can’t Grendel destroy Hrothgar’s throne or harm the king?
answer

Hrothgar is protected by God because he is the king
question

Who stole the cup from the dragon?
answer

A runaway slave who sought recompense with his master by offering the cup
question

Where did the dragon’s treasure come from?
answer

It came from a precursor dynasty that had long since died out
question

What weapons does Beowulf use against the dragon?
answer

chainmail shirt, sword, and shield
question

Who says the following quote (lines 883-884): “we swore / That these swords and armor were each for us all!”
answer

Wiglaf
question

What does Beowulf tell the Geats to do, to show that they remember him?
answer

Name a tower after him
question

What is a shroud?
answer

length of cloth or an enveloping garment in which a dead person is wrapped for burial
question

What is a comitatus?
answer

Name for an anglo-saxon kinship group
question

During the middle ages, where were literary texts created and preserved?
answer

In the churches and monasteries
question

The price paid to a tribe as reparation for killing one of its warriors is called what?
answer

WarGuild
question

Author of Beowulf
answer

Seamus Heaney
question

Shield
answer

Great king of the ancient Danes and founder of the royal line
question

Why does the book begin with shields death?
answer

to give background on the Danes
question

Hrothgar
answer

He is the King of the Danes at the time of Grendel’s assaults. He builds the hall Heorot as a tribute to his people and his reign.
question

Grendel
answer

A demon descended from Cain, Grendel preys on Hrothgar’s warriors in the king’s mead-hall, Heorot. Because his ruthless and miserable existence is part of the retribution exacted by God for Cain’s murder of Abel, Grendel fits solidly within the ethos of vengeance that governs the world of the poem.
question

Beowulf
answer

Nephew of the Geatish king Hygelac and greatest hero of the world
question

unferth
answer

A Danish warrior who is jealous of Beowulf, Unferth is unable or unwilling to fight Grendel, thus proving himself inferior to Beowulf.
question

How does Beowulf plan on fighting Grendel?
answer

unarmed
question

What does Grendel leave behind when Beowulf attacks?
answer

his arm
question

Where does Grendel go after Beowulf attacks?
answer

Back to his swap land terrified
question

Why does the scop recite the story of Sigemund?
answer

He was a great hero who slayed a dragon just like Beowulf taking down Grendel.
question

What does Wealhtheow have to say to Beowulf?
answer

She wants Beowulf to act as a friend to her children when she dies and make sure they are treated well.
question

Who attacks the second time at the mead-hall?
answer

grendels mother seaking revenge
question

What does Grendel’s mother take when she heads back to the swap land?
answer

Grendels arm
question

What does Unferth lend Beowulf going into the battle with Grendel’s mother?
answer

The great and seasoned sword hrunting
question

What saves Beowulf when he is dragged to Grendel’s mothers court?
answer

He grabs the sword on the wall used for fighting off giants
question

Why do the Danes return home and leave Beowulf?
answer

They see blood rise to the top of the water and lose hope
question

What is Beowulf given for his great success?
answer

12 treasures
question

king heremod
answer

An evil king of legend. The scop, or bard, at Heorot discusses King Heremod as a figure who contrasts greatly with Beowulf.

Get instant access to
all materials

Become a Member