Beowulf: Introduction to Chapter 16

The monster Grendel had slain many warriors in the hall of King Hrothgar, but Beowulf had defeated it by strength of arms. Now he prepared to meet with Grendel’s mother, that had sought revenge on the Danes after Grendel’s death. Armoured well, and armed with the famed sword Hrunting, Beowulf bid Hrothgar to treat well with his men and his people if he should perish, and dove into the loathsome lake where Grendel’s mother dwelled. After many hours of swimming, he met with her – her grip could not crush his armour, but his sword could not pierce her skin. Undaunted, he flung his sword away and wrestled with her in her watery hall, until he caught sight of a sword there that might aid him. He took hold of it, heavy though it was, and with it beheaded the mother of Grendel.