Beowulf also came from royal families. Hrethel is King of Geatland and Beowulf's mother's father, his maternal grandfather. Though Beowulf's mother is never named in the epic, we know she was Hrethel's daughter. Hrethel has four children, three sons Hygelac, Herebeald, and Haethycn and Beowulf's mother. His oldest son follows him as king. Hygelac is king of the Geats during Beowulf's time, and Beowulf's uncle. He is the oldest son of Hrethel. Hygelac married Hygd and they have a son named Heardred, who becomes king of Geatland when Hygelac dies. Though Hygd offers the crown to Beowulf, he declines to his cousin Heardred, saying the son of Hygelac should be king. Heardred took the throne that Beowulf refused. Unfortunately, he was killed in
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