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Beowulf is an Old English epic poem consisting of 3,182 alliterative lines. It may be the oldest surviving long poem in Old English and is commonly cited as one of the most important works of Old English literature. The author was an anonymous Anglo-Saxon poet, referred to by scholars as the "Beowulf poet".
In the poem, the protagonist, Beowulf, a hero of the Geats, comes to the aid of Hrothgar, king of the Danes, whose great hall, Heorot, is plagued by the monster Grendel. Beowulf kills Grendel with his bare hands and Grendel's mother with a giant's sword that he found in her lair.