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The claim that the Beowulf poet was interested in the relationship between the deeds of his hero and the myth of the Flood is difficult to dispute, the references to the Flood cannot be gratuitous. An enduring problem in Beowulf criticism is one of how to locate the poem within Anglo-Saxon literary culture. Beowulf's presentation of the Flood as a battle, and its waters simultaneously as God's weapon, his army and a pure expression of his will, is strikingly paralleled in Genesis A, Andreas and Exodus. The poet's presentation of the myth of the Flood does not articulate any law code, though the simple terms of the Noachic covenant inform the poet's horror at Grendel's violation of both its precepts in his meaningless killing and his consumption of blood.

Water and fire

The myth of the Flood in Anglo-Saxon England

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