1- "I have avenged the evil deeds, the slaughter of the Danes, as it was right to do" [Norton,48]. This quotation contrasts with the Christian belief of "turn the other cheek." According to Abrams, "Relatives who failed either to exact wergild or to take vengeance could never be happy, having found no practical way of satisfying thier grief for their kinsman's death" [Norton,23]. For the medieval warrior, it was honorable to avenge his murdered kinsman. When vengeance could not be taken, payment was to be exacted (wergild). It is interesting to note that even in modern times, wergild still exists in the form of the civil court system. Even though a man could escape capital punishment, he can still be sued in civil court for monetary and compensatory damages. 2- "At times He lets the thoughts of a man's high lineage move in delight, gives him joy of earth in his homeland, a stronghold of men to rule over, makes regions of the world so subject to him, ..." [Norton,49] Hrothgar is reciting a lesson to Beowulf, so that Beowulf may understand how a good ruler should behave. In this passage, Hrothgar is explaining how Gd ("He") makes certain men of "high lineage" rulers of other men. In most religions, all men are created more or less equal and in the image of Gd. The pagan belief that Gd has chosen some men to be rulers over other men goes against Judeo-Christian beliefs. 3- "...the guest slept within until the black raven, blithe-hearted, announced heaven's joy" [Norton,50]. The raven, a pagan symbol in Norse mythology, was the messenger for the mythical war king Odin, father of Thor. According to The Dictionary of Phrase and Fable by E. Cobham Brewer: The fatal raven, consecrated to Odin, the Danish war-god, was the emblem on the Danish standard. This raven was said to be possessed of necromantic power. The standard was termed Landeyda (the desolation of the country), and miraculous powers were attributed to it. The fatal raven was the device of Odin, god of war, and was said to have been woven and embroidered in one noontide by the daughters of Regner Lodbrok, son of Sigurd, that dauntless warrior who chanted his death-song (the Krakamal) while being stung to death in a horrible pit filled with deadly serpents. If the Danish arms were destined to defeat, the raven hung his wings; if victory was to attend them, he stood erect and soaring, as if inviting the warriors to follow. The necromantic powers, or "black-magic", allowed the ravens to communicate with dead spirits and therefore predict the future. Brewer continues: The two ravens that sit on the shoulders of Odin are called Hugin and Munnin (Mind and Memory). One raven will not pluck another's cyes out (German, ``Keine krähe hackt der anderen die augen ques''). Friends will not ``peach'' friends; you are not to take for granted all that a friend says of a friend. This passage seems to imply a duality of mind and brain, where one cannot succeed without the help of the other. It is interesting to note this distinction in Norse mythology, considering that questions concerning brain/mind duality continue to exist. For example, is there a distinction between mind and body, or does the brain simply furnish our sense of spirit? In Douglas Hofstadter and Daniel Dennett's book The Mind's Eye, a compilation of thought provoking essays on metaphysics and computer science, there is an essay that proposes a simple experiment in order to provide the respondant with an interesting perspective on the subject: Ask yourself the question "Am I a brain, or do I have a brain?" The writer advises the respondant to answer in the way that is most comfortable. Most people tend to easily respond that they have a brain. Therefore, the question is "What are we that have brains?" From the above passage, one can make the suggestion that the Norsemen may have made this brain/mind distinction.