“Beowulf will be read differently if it is imagined to have been produced in the time of Bede (c. 725) or Alfred (c. 880) or AElfric (c. 1000). The earlier we think the poem to be, the more potentially authentic its historical material; a later Beowulf, more openly fictional, is a more complex and “literary” work. Moreover, the more closely we try to assign a date and place of origin to the poem, the more closely we must read it as a text, the intention of a single author or a reflection of a particular ideology, rather than a product of an oral poetic art whose composition may have been collective and whose traditional roots are beyond discovery” (“Beowulf.” BABL Concise, Edited by Joseph Black et. al., 2015, p.60)
Topic: Pagan/Christian themes
“Then, as I’ve heard, four swift horses, / fallow as apples, well-matched, followed / that war-gear” (Beowulf 2163-2165). Allusion to Four Horses of the Apocalypse?