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Essay about Comparison of Gilgamesh and Enkidu

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Gilgamesh was two thirds of a god who possessed beauty, a gorgeous body, and great amounts of courage and strength that surpassed all other humans. His greatness was established through the wonderful walls he built around Uruk, a rampart, and a temple for Anu and Ishtar (Gilgamesh & Sandars, 61). Enkidu on the other hand was initially an uncivilized man created by the goddess of creation, Aruru. His appearance was strictly barbaric with his long hair and hairy body, whose innocent mind knew nothing of a civilized human culture (Gilgamesh et al., 62). He ate grass and lived among the other animals in the woods until a trapper spotted him while trying to catch his game and noted to his father that he “was the strongest man in the world [and] is like an immortal from heaven” (Gilgamesh et al., 62). The trapper indicated his feeling of inferiority to Enkidu in the woods as he says he is afraid of him. One could say that Enkidu rules the woods of the uncivilized just as Gilgamesh rules over the city of Uruk; over the civilized. Both men are characterized as powerful, strong men in their domain yet Gilgamesh is in fact stronger and more powerful than his brother, Enkidu whom he calls his servant, fore he is the king of Uruk and is two thirds god. Enkidu also dies halfway through the adventure the two have while Gilgamesh, who is afraid of death, goes on to find a way to live immortally. Though inferior to his king brother, Enkidu completes the other half of Gilgamesh: while Gilgamesh knows the ins and outs of the city he rules, he is not familiar with the woods or nature in the ways that Enkidu is. Though they are different from each other, they both hold parallels with one another by bringing out the best in each other, thus reasonabl...


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...reat flood. Gilgamesh was not worthy of being a full god. Instead, Utnapishtim granted Gilgamesh the opportunity of the life he wished for so deeply by challenging him to stay awake for six days and seven nights. Being the human being that he was, Gilgamesh was unable to stay awake for the duration of that time. Prior to Gilgamesh’s reluctant return to Uruk, Utnapishtim bestowed upon him the secret of the magical plant that grows in the depths of the seas that which makes man youthful again. After successfully retrieving the plant, Gilgamesh unfortunately loses possession of the motif to a snake whom according to mythology now acquires “eternal life” or “everlasting youth” due to the continuous shedding of the skin. So, once again, Gilgamesh had been cheated of his supernatural gift yet again, demonstrating his true identity of a mortal human being (Gresseth, 6).



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