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Loyalty is one of the major themes in Beowulf. The epic's hero's main virtue is loyalty. He finds out about connections that motivates him to pursue a life of paying back a family debt to Hrothgar. He dedicated his life to fulfilling promises and being a hero.
Grendel is the embodiment of envy. He pursues a life of evil, due to his inability to join the Danes and share in their belief of happiness, faith, or hope. His motivation is one of the most important Christian influences, as Cain's descendant, who is banished forever.
Grendel and his mother, examples of paganism and the belief of monsters, symbolize themes of revenge. They are the evil in "good vs. evil" and display that as they try to avenge each others death.
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