BEOWULF is the remarkable hero of the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf, "the greatest of the surviving epics composed by the Germanic peoples" (Norton, 22). He is famous for his strength ("he has in his handgrip the strength of thirty men") and for his courage in fighting monsters. In the epic, Beowulf fights Grendel, a hateful monster who terrorizes Heorot; Grendel's mother, who tries to avenge the death of her son; and the Dragon, who threatens Beowulf's tribe and burns his hall.