Beowulf is the oldest surviving long poem in Old English, often cited as one of the most important works of Old English literature, unparalleled in its epic grandeur and scope, its scenes of blood and battle both stirring and distinctive.
The poem, set in Scandinavia, was written in England somewhere between the 8th and the 11th centuries and tells the story of the mighty warrior Beowulf and of his battles, first with the monster Grendel, who has laid waste to the great hall of the Danish king Hrothgar, then with Grendel's avenging mother, and finally with a dragon that threatens to devastate his homeland.
Victorious, Beowulf goes home to Geatland and later becomes king.
Through its marvelous blend of myth and history, Beowulf vividly evokes a fantastic world in which men and supernatural forces live side by side.
The author was an anonymous Anglo-Saxon poet.