Beowulf is the hero of our only Anglo-Saxon epic poem, which bears his name. He was a mighty warrior, something of a northern equivalent of the Greek Hercules. Hearing from a wandering minstrel that the realm of Hrothgar the Jute was being devastated by a foul monster, Grendel, Beowulf offered his services. So sure was he of his strength that he dispensed with armour in his fight with Grendel, who escaped after losing an arm and died in his lair. There was rejoicing and feasting in Hrothgar's hall that evening, but in the morning there was dismay, for Grendel's mother burst in upon the warriors and slew many in their sleep. The dauntless Beowulf thereupon sought her out in her home at the bottom of the lake beyond the marshlands, and after a long and fierce struggle, slew her and returned victorious, to be well rewarded by Hrothgar. Then Beowulf returned to his own land, which he governed for the young king for a time, finally dying in battle with a flaming dragon, guardian of a costly treasure, who bit him with poisoned fangs. His people buried their beloved hero on a high mound, the Hronesnas, placing by his side the golden treasure which he had died to win.