Never before has a force under arms
disembarked so openly…
Nor have I seen
a mightier man-at-arms on this earth
than the one standing here: unless I am mistaken,
he is truly noble. This is no mere
hanger-on in a hero’s armour.

Beowulf, Seamus Heaney (trans.)

Lines 244-251: Arms are very important to the culture of ancient England. Beowulf’s noble birth is established from his war-gear.