[ bey-uh-woolf ]

  1. (italics) an English alliterative epic poem, probably written in the early 8th century a.d.

  2. the hero of this poem.

Words Nearby Beowulf Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use Beowulf in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for Beowulf


/ (ˈbeɪəˌwʊlf) /

  1. an anonymous Old English epic poem in alliterative verse, believed to have been composed in the 8th century a.d

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for Beowulf


[ (bay-uh-woolf) ]

An epic in Old English, estimated as dating from as early as the eighth century; the earliest long work of literature in English. The critical events are the slaying of the monster Grendel and Grendel's mother by the hero Beowulf and Beowulf's battle with a dragon, in which he is mortally wounded.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.