Beowulf And Unferth: Foil Ed In The Story Ap Literature Essay

833 words - 4 pages

Francis Verdeflor
Dr. J. Abikzer
AP English Literature
16 November 2018
The Pride is the Window to the Soul
Pride is an admission of weakness; it secretly fears all competition and dreads all rivals.
-Fulton J. Sheen
While boasting is an acceptable form of self-assertion in the unstated social laws of society, not having the moral courage to back that up reveals your true character. Such is true in the case of Unferth and his actions within the story Beowulf. Through Unferth’s actions, such as contesting Beowulf’s stories with slandered versions of his own, he not only reveals himself as a foil to Beowulf, but also solidifies the idea of reputation and its impact as themes in the story’s canon.
When the Geats arrived at Heorot and started to feast with the Danes, Unferth was the one to speak out against Beowulf and his exploits. In an attempt to sully Beowulf’s name, Unferth recounts a swimming contest between Beowulf and a man named Breca in which Beowulf had lost: “Are you not the Beowulf who took on Breca/ in a swimming match on the open sea,/ ...and then [Breca] outswam you,/ came ashore the stronger contender (506-518).” To which Beowulf corrects him and tells the true story, in which Beowulf had actually fought 9 sea-beasts in total and had still won the swimming contest: “...The truth is,/ ...I was the strongest swimmer of all./ ...Time and time again, foul things attacked me,/ sword had killed/ nine sea-monsters (532-575).” There’s a clear difference in story between the two. While Unferth completely discredits Beowulf in an attempt to make him seem like less of a powerful figure, Beowulf maintains his composure and disproves those statements with the true account of the swimming contest. This attempt at discrediting Beowulf creates clear contrasts between the two men: rather than bring himself up by making himself seem as great as Beowulf, Unferth chooses to try and tear him down, showing his lack of moral character and insecurities compared to Beowulf, who embodies the virtues of a righteous man.
Furthermore, it was explicitly stated that Unferth was, “...sick with envy (502),” and, “...could not… abide the fact/ that anyone else.../ might enjoy greater regard than he did (503-504),” showing his true intentions behind his actions. It’s clear to see that Unferth is quite bitter, perhaps even jealous, of the attention that Beowulf is receiving, so much so that he lashes out at Beowulf through slander. He jeered at Beowulf, claiming the reason why he even ente...


This assignment is for Ap Literature in which the story is told by Esta. - English - Essay

527 words - 3 pages An American Tragedy By Esta     “An American Tragedy” is a story written by Theodore Dreiser, which talks about a boy by the name of Clyde Griffiths who goes through many dramatic changes in character throughout the story. Clyde Griffiths goes through many ups and downs, and makes decisions in his life that make him become more independent from his religious family. Many may wonder how the story would change if it was told in the perspective of

What makes Beowulf an epic poem - AP Literature - essay

700 words - 3 pages Free Damewood 1 Damewood 2 Damewood 3 Claire Damewood Mr. Ramseyer College Prep English 6 November 2018 Epic Elements of Beowulf The story of Beowulf is a story that takes you back a few hundred years. This is a story, not of a mere man, but a savior and a god to his people. There are three key epic elements of a hero that are shown in Beowulf. These are his superhuman abilities, his willingness to sacrifice his life for others, and the difficult

Shakespeare's Relevance in Modern Society - AP Literature and Composition - Essay

2436 words - 10 pages Sokolova 1 Margie Sokolova Wilson AP Literature 31 January 2018 Modernized Shakespeare World-famous playwright and author, William Shakespeare, has written some of the most referenced and well-known pieces of literature ever created. His acute attention to detail, impressive use of literary devices, and ability to expand upon issues concerning mankind are the reasons we have continued to explore his work for centuries. Although he was born over

The Foil in Kate Chopin's "The Awakening"

439 words - 2 pages Grand Isle. It is here that Edna begins "to realize her position in the universe as a human being," recognizing her interpersonal relations with others and intrapersonal relations with herself (15). Here, Chopin introduces Adèle as a character that provokes Edna's unorthodox views on matrimony and maternity, indicating that, "the two women did not appear to understand each other or to be talking the same language" (51). At this point in

ozymandias and the second coming comparison - AP english literature - essay

606 words - 3 pages Mejia 1 Mejia 2 Joshua Mejia Mrs. Walters AP English Literature and Composition 9/25/18 Nothing lasts forever. Everything is short-lived, a cycle that undergoes change several times. Power, money, and possessions all disappear. William Butler Yeats and Percy Bysshe Shelley, in their respective poems, paint a picture in a sense that life is generally a cycle, and that change might not always be pleasant. Change is part of the order of life and

the awakening and analysis on female repression - ap literature - essay

1526 words - 7 pages -love from Edna. He even feels regret when his thoughts wander toward that conclusion; however, he is not wrong. Edna is “not a mother-woman,” as Chopin calls the women who are “the embodiment of every womanly grace and charm.” Adèle Ratignolle acts as a foil to Edna’s own lack of interest in motherhood and wifely duties (10). According to Mr. Pontellier, his wife is deficient; she cannot hide her disdain for what society traditionally requires of

Racial Fixation and Otherness in Moby Dick and Heart of Darkness - AP Literature - essay

1811 words - 8 pages LaGreca 1 Annamarie LaGreca Mr. Chorazy AP Literature and Composition 22 January 2018 Otherness and Racial Fixation in ​Moby Dick​ and ​Heart of Darkness The term otherness, by definition, is described as the quality or fact of being different. Apart from its generic elucidation, otherness is commonly used in literature to depict an inferior or distinct kind. Authors use this idea in order to imply an underlying message or theme in their works

Hamlet and the Bluest eye: Pecola, Ophelia and Rejection - AP Literature and Composition - Essay

940 words - 4 pages Maria Navarro Mr. Sayre AP Literature and Composition 16 December 2017 Pecola, Ophelia, Rejection While reading the ending of the bluest I realized that Pecola's story ended, in the same way, Ophelia's life ended - rejection. Pecola is a rejected child by her family, neighbours and societies view, and because of this, she tries to disappear, when she does this “little parts of her body faded away.” (Autumn 3, pg.45) She wants to disappear

Understanding how natural law and the economy and their interplay - High School and AP Literature - Essay

1249 words - 5 pages 1 Understanding Why Nations Fail Accurately deconstructing modern societies, and explaining their strengths and weaknesses is an extremely difficult task. Daron Acemoglu, and James A. Robinson attempt to achieve this task in their book Why Nations Fail. Why Nations Fail uses the economy as a focal point in understanding societies throughout history. Acemoglu and Robinson cite a combination of human actions and institutions as the primary factors

I am writing a Siddhartha essay in my Ap English Literature Course - AP English Literature - Essay

686 words - 3 pages indirectly advertises his wealth, he sneers at the “shabbier English types” whom the newspaper characterizes as the “dregs” and “rabble” of the population. The author's effective use of diction highlights the distinction between the narrator and those at the funeral. This further emphasizes the narrator’s superior position in society and reinforces his belief that there are indeed two "types" of Englishmen--the unprivileged and the prosperous

Beowulf, Qualities of an epic poem - English literature - Essay

1500 words - 6 pages multiple days? Well there was one hero that could, Beowulf. Over 1,000 years ago, poems or books were not written in english yet, but Beowulf was the first poem that was written in english. Beowulf was created to tell a story about a Hero that could do the impossible to save the world and be known as the Hero that cannot be stopped and have a legacy after he’s gone. Beowulf is known for being an epic poem, but there are many qualities of one. Three

How Macbeth changed through the story - Literature - Essay

783 words - 4 pages Macbeth essay In Williams Shakespeare's play Macbeth, Macbeth is portrayed as a courageous figure. He showed his courage while fighting against MacDonwald and Norway as well as in his final battle where Macbeth remains brave even when he realizes that he lost. However, Macbeth's personality vastly changed through the plot of the play. Macbeth lost a feeling of guilt and became confident in the actions that he did. Throughout the act of the play

How is Beowulf portrayed as a savior to his people? Does this allude to christianity? - AP Literature - English Paper

1004 words - 5 pages Beowulf Beowulf, an epic poem, takes place in the 9th centuries; known as the Medieval Ages. Beowulf encounters and clashes against ruthless monsters throughout the story, while alluding to the bible. Many biblical references were portrayed, which can conclude the extent in which Christianity was established. Syncretism is present within the story, which is shown by Beowulf. Beowulf mixes both christian values and pagan traditions. The epic of

Poetry paper about the poem "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night" - AP Literature and Composition - Essay

602 words - 3 pages Grace Crowley Mrs. Cicero AP Literature and Composition 30 October 2018 Poetry Paper The cycle of life always ends in death, but the frightful aspect is not necessarily dying itself but the concept of when it will happen. This fear of timing can prevent many from conquering their dreams and ambitions which consequently is giving up one’s life too quickly. In a last plea to keep his father alive, Dylan Thomas argues in his poem “Do Not Go Gentle

literary devices used "In the inner city" and in "the city's love" - ap lit - timed essay

563 words - 3 pages Audrey gregory p.2 Audrey Gregory Mrs. Kas Ap Lit, p.2 11/3/18 “Cities” Compare/Contrast essay There are various forms in which authors can show relationships, but one of the most important relationships established is the relationship between the speaker and the work. Although both Mckay and Clifton portray the relationship between the speaker and the city differently, both authors use similar style elements such as imagery and tone to reveal