Essay about The Epic Of Gilgamesh, By Homer

Essay about The Epic Of Gilgamesh, By Homer

Length: 1630 words (4.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In The Epic of Gilgamesh, we see Gilgamesh often boasting of his physical abilities and opulent city. In The Odyssey, there are many situations in which Odysseus loses sight of his goal to return to Ithaca in order to snatch a little bit of glory for himself. Both of these stories illustrate their respective heroes arrogance and self-centeredness in the pursuit of their own personal gains. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, Gilgamesh believes he will live forever and thus does not allow himself to worry about how his actions will affect others. In The Odyssey, Odysseus has not yet abandoned the battlefield mindset bred on the battlegrounds of Troy and still craves adrenaline. Both heroes have their fair share of flaws. Nonetheless, they both also experience a moment of atonement for their imperfections. If we look at the experiences of these heroes as described in their stories, then the ideal hero can be defined as a flawed one. The ideal hero is hindered on their journey by their flaws, although they may or may not be conscious of these flaws. By the end of their journey, the ideal hero should be able to realize their flaws and atone for them.
Some might argue that we should simply ignore the flaws of heroes and instead focus on their accomplishments by themselves. It is true that the feats of strength and intelligence Odysseus and Gilgamesh are impressive and admirable. However, if we were to only look at the positive aspects of these heroes, then we would be making a shallow assessment. Often we look up to heroes because we see things in them we long for but believe we could never achieve. Be that as it may, if we take into account these heroes weaknesses as well as their strengths, perhaps we will identify the more well-rounded and m...


... middle of paper ...


... hero is an individual who has answered the call to adventure, struggled with themselves in the face of adversity, and emerged a more humble person. The ideal hero, according to The Epic of Gilgamesh and The Odyssey, can appreciate, rather than boast about, their accomplishments.
The question must be asked, with the ideal hero that is defined in The Epic of Gilgamesh and The Odyssey, why do we admire such flawed heroes? Are we not supposed to praise an individual better than ourselves, someone we could aspire to become but never truly match? It can be said, that the stories of such flawed heroes have lasted through the ages because we see a little bit of ourselves in Gilgamesh and Odysseus’ imperfections. It is nice to think about their unrivaled strength and striking intelligence, but what really inspires us is perhaps their ability to live with their imperfections.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay about The Epic Of Gilgamesh, By Homer

- In The Epic of Gilgamesh, we see Gilgamesh often boasting of his physical abilities and opulent city. In The Odyssey, there are many situations in which Odysseus loses sight of his goal to return to Ithaca in order to snatch a little bit of glory for himself. Both of these stories illustrate their respective heroes arrogance and self-centeredness in the pursuit of their own personal gains. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, Gilgamesh believes he will live forever and thus does not allow himself to worry about how his actions will affect others....   [tags: Odyssey, Epic poetry, Epic of Gilgamesh, Ishtar]

Strong Essays
1630 words (4.7 pages)

The Epic Of Gilgamesh And The Odyssey Essay

- ... So, Telemachus decides to find his father old comrades to see if they know what happened to his father. Gilgamesh and Telemachus both face unforeseen challenges during their travels. Gilgamesh had the hardest journey by far. Gilgamesh’s challenges were physical, where as Telemachus’ were political. Gilgamesh is told that in order to reach Utanapishtim, he has to first travel through the sun tunnel in just twelve hours. Then he is told that he must paddle a boat over the waters of death because he ironically destroyed the Stone Charms, which would have made his journey easier....   [tags: Odyssey, Epic of Gilgamesh, Trojan War, Homer]

Strong Essays
1269 words (3.6 pages)

Spiritual Growth in the Epic of Gilgamesh, Homer's Odyssey, and Dante's Inferno

- For centuries, authors have been writing stories about man's journey of self-discovery. Spanning almost three-thousand years, the Epic of Gilgamesh, Homer's Odyssey, and Dante's Inferno are three stories where a journey of self-discovery is central to the plot. The main characters, Gilgamesh, Telemachus, and Dante, respectively, find themselves making a journey that ultimately changes them for the better. The journeys may not be exactly the same, but they do share a common chain of events....   [tags: Compare Contrast Essays]

Strong Essays
1645 words (4.7 pages)

Comparison Of Homer 's ' Epic Of Gilgamesh ' Essay

- Odysseus and Gilgamesh are described in the two tales from different periods of time. Both characters are heroic representations of two ordinary men who are searching for the meaning of life. The two literary works portray them as men with certain special strengths even though they both make mistakes and experience the hardships of life. One is said to have metal strength while the other one has physical strength and this special trait helps them to find their own meaning of life through the trials and tribulations that they experience differently....   [tags: Odyssey, Trojan War, Meaning of life, Trojan Horse]

Strong Essays
947 words (2.7 pages)

Essay about Comparing the Hero in Epic of Gilgamesh and Homer's Iliad

- The Hero in Epic of Gilgamesh and the Iliad   'One and the same lot for the man who hangs back and the man who battles hard. The same honor waits for the coward and the brave. They both go down to Death, the fighter who shirks, the one who works to exhaustion.' (IX,385-88) Thus muses Achilles, one of epic poetry's greatest heroes. Epic poetry, one of the earliest forms of literature, began as an oral narration describing a series of mythical or historic events. Eventually, these stories were written down and read aloud to an audience....   [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]

Strong Essays
744 words (2.1 pages)

The Epic Of Gilgamesh And The Odyssey Essay example

- Gilgamesh and the Odyssey, two epics of parallel parameters, that extend over a thousand years, the heroes Gilgamesh and Odysseus, the two individual paragons of heroism, immortality and the reverence of super natural gods in both tales. The two different cultures illuminate similarities and contrasts between the two texts, The Epic of Gilgamesh depicts the ancient Mesopotamian culture and values through its hero Gilgamesh, as the Odyssey presents its cultural values through the Hero of Homer’s The Odyssey....   [tags: Epic of Gilgamesh, Odyssey, Mesopotamia]

Strong Essays
1183 words (3.4 pages)

The Odyssey And The Epic Of Gilgamesh Essay

- Mortal and immortal women inspire many of the events that take place in The Odyssey and The Epic of Gilgamesh. For example, without the harlot, who “tames” Enkidu, the story of Gilgamesh would not be, as we know it. A chapter entitled, “Women in Ancient Epic” from A Companion to Ancient Epic by Helene Foley compares Ishtar in Gilgamesh to Calypso and Circe in The Odyssey. By comparing the role of immortal and mortal women in both The Odyssey and The Epic of Gilgamesh, one will be able to discern how the feminine figures have played a pivotal role in shaping the destiny of the epic heroes, as well as, understanding the interrelation amongst the female figures of both ancient epics....   [tags: Odyssey, Epic of Gilgamesh, Odysseus, Ishtar]

Strong Essays
1574 words (4.5 pages)

Essay about Review Of ' The Epic Of Gilgamesh '

- ... Conversely, Antigone sees a dignified death in her execution from defying the law to bury one of her brothers (Sophocles 63). Antigone sees the dishonor to her brother’s memory, if his corpse is left open to nature, as worse than committing treason. The interpretations of glory that Enkidu, Odysseus, and Antigone have are all accurate as glory’s definition is relative. Also, readers’ opinions of grandeur can differ or agree with the characters’. A group of people might say that some war deaths are not deserving of homage as the individual died fighting for the wrong cause; in contrast, some will say that dying for one’s country is always respectable....   [tags: Trojan War, Odyssey, Sophocles, Homer]

Strong Essays
753 words (2.2 pages)

The Epic Of Gilgamesh And Iliad Essay

- Traveling the world allows one to open their mind to the wide array of cultures. It allows one to change their views on others, but more importantly, it allows one to grow and become a better person. The Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh and the Greek poet Homer’s Iliad express how one important part of a hero’s journey is the transformation that the hero’s character goes through over the course of their story. In the Epic of Gilgamesh and Iliad, the characters Gilgamesh and Achilles demonstrate that family is very important throughout one’s lifetime....   [tags: Epic of Gilgamesh, Iliad, Trojan War, Achilles]

Strong Essays
1694 words (4.8 pages)

The Two Sagas of the Epic of Gilgamesh Essay

- The Two Sagas of Gilgamesh Western literature has few epics of any real greatness: readers can probably name most of them and count them on their hands with a few fingers left over. Of these, The Epic of Gilgamesh is by far the oldest. The standard version of the epic grandfathers Homer's Iliad and Odyssey by centuries. But what does it mean to call Gilgamesh an epic. By the standards of Homer's outline of an epic, Gilgamesh's tale could be seen as two distinctly different, yet drawn together sagas....   [tags: Epic Gilgamesh essays]

Free Essays
870 words (2.5 pages)