In the poem, Beowulf, a warrior from Geats comes to the rescue of Hrothgar, the king of the Danes whose land is being attacked by a monster, Grendel. Beowulf succeeds and defeats Grendel. To show his prowess, he even kills Grendel with his bare hands. However, the tension of the story escalates, because Grendel's mother is now on the warpath to get revenge. As the story progresses, Beowulf kills Grendel's mother in her liar with a sword that giants of a past time once used.

After this victory, Beowulf returns home to Geats. Fifty years pass. However, there is one final battle. There is a dragon that plagues his people because of stolen treasure. More importantly, Beowulf now has to defend his people. He fails at first, but then with the help of Wiglaf, a servant, chases the dragon into its lair and kills it. However, in the process, Beowulf receives a fatal wound and dies. Finally, he is buried by the sea.