The father of Beowulf, from the Old English poem of the same title. In Old English his name is spelled Ecgþēowes. He is the brother-in-law of Hygelac. His wife, and Beowulf's mother, is the only daughter of Hrethel, the King of the Geats. The mother is not given a name in the text and she really only pops up when Beowulf says something like "...my mother, the daughter of Hrethel, blah blah blah." Ecgtheow is dead at the time of the poem's beggining, but it is made known that he has a strong and favorable legacy. Ecgtheow is not Geatish, and probably belonged to a Swedish family by the name of Waegmunding. This, of course, does not prevent Beowulf from becoming king of the Geats.