In Thomas D. Hill essay, “The Christian Language and Theme of Beowulf” he expressed his thoughts on whether certain lines in Beowulf pertain to a paganism or Christianity outlook. This is an important factor of the poem because many authors believe that the poet used both “paganism and Christianity” values to establish the religion morals of Beowulf. Though the author believes that this poem has been written before in many different translations, he believes that it is more has more of a Christian concept.
I believe that many of the ideas coincide with both religious aspects. Paganism was the bases or main start of religion before Christianity came to be. When reading Beowulf many of the quotes seem to be put in a Christian prospective. This is rather weird considering at the time when Beowulf was supposedly written many people were pagans and those who were pre-Christian somewhat hid the fact of their religion. Hill feels like the religion in Beowulf was Christianity. The Beowulf-poet gave the two main characters Beowulf and Hrothgar a lot of Christian characteristics.
The author calls Beowulf and his men Noachities, “gentiles who share the religious heritage and knowledge of Noah and his sons without having access to the reveal knowledge of God which was grated to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob a tradition culminated by the revelation of the Law to Moses and continued by the Charismatic tradition of prophecy in Israel”( Hill 202. ) There was a part in the poem, where the men of Geat were punished for worshiping idol gods. The characteristics or moral religious values that Beowulf and Hrothgar of wanting a Christian funeral, which at that time was being put in a ship and being sent of f to sea.
Many critics believed that Beowulf did not follow being pagans or Christians. A lot of them feel like between the different translating of the poem, many of the religion facts were changed. The poem goes from saying all of these nice Christian aspects to having at least two or three paganism views. The worshiping of the idols were part of the pagans religion, because the poet claims that “the Danes do not know the identity of the true God this claim is of course generally true of (real)(true) Germanic paganism” (Hill 203. Although the hero’s Beowulf and Hrothgar were suppose to be pagans, they still had a Christian funeral and then later on the Danes worshipped God and gave thanks to him, which was kind of contradicting considering that at first they acted like they did not know who their “true God”, was besides the idols they worshipped. I believe that Beowulf has both Christian and paganism religious values, due to the fact that they had both religious in the poem. I understand that there have been many different translations of the book, which affect my reasoning. The essay by Thomas D.
Hill, “The Christian Language and Theme of Beowulf” expresses the thoughts of whether Beowulf has a pagans or Christian religion background. This is an important factor because many scholarly critics are still debating the poem. Considering Beowulf has been translated many different times, many of the religious aspects change, so I think that both religion values are shown. Works Cited Hill, Thomas D. “The Christian Language and Theme of Beowulf. ” Beowulf: A Verse Translation. Daniel Donoghue. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc, 2002. 197- 211.