Essay about The Epic of Gilgamesh: Overview

Essay about The Epic of Gilgamesh: Overview

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The Epic of Gilgamesh is the greatest text of Mesopotamia and one of the earliest pieces of world literature. Gilgamesh quest for immortality explores human concerns about death, friendship, nature, civilization, power, violence, travel adventures, homecoming, love and sexuality. (pg. 95) “The Gilgamesh of the epic is an awe-inspiring, sparkling hero, but at first also the epitome of a bad ruler: arrogant, oppressive, and brutal.” (pg.96) Gilgamesh is 2/3 god because of his superhuman strength and endurance; he is 1/3 human because of his mortality. His epitome of a bad ruler will cause the gods to give consequences to his actions.
The gods act very unfairly and impulsively throughout the epic which may be due to the fact that they are gods and there is nothing or anyone above them. They are above all and can chose to do what they want or give consequences as they see fit which they do so throughout the epic of Gilgamesh. Not all gods are bad and not all bad gods are completely bad. What is depicted in the last sentence is that not every action that a god takes will stick to a certain formality such as always being good or bad. Gods can be dangerous if they don’t have things go their way as it is seen in this epic.
The gods in the epic started on the right foot helping the people of Uruk which were complaining to them about their king Gilgamesh which had lost sight of the people and just focused on gaining more and more power. Gilgamesh was very brutal telling the people of Uruk that he would leave no son to his father and no girl to her mother; therefore the people or Uruk complained “You created this headstrong wild bull in ramparted Uruk… He is harrying the young men of Uruk beyond reason… The warrior’s daughter, the young m...


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...d many things could upset them very easily which meant that people should be cautious of what they did. Gilgamesh was not cautious at all in the other hand because he ended up killing Humbaba and the Bull of Heaven. Gilgamesh should have seen a consequence coming for his actions. Enkidu dies and Gilgamesh suffers; therefore, the gods accomplished the goal of punishing both for their actions. Enkidu was given death while Gilgamesh had to deal with the loss of his founded new best friend and continue his quest on his own. The gods could have punished Enkidu in another way, but the gods acted a lot on pure instinct and began their revenge some may say very quickly.



Works Cited

Puchner, Martin. "The Epic of Gilgamesh." The Norton Anthology of World Literature. New York: W.W. Norton &, 2012.
Shaheen, Basima. In class lectures. University of North Texas. Spring 2014

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Essay about The Epic of Gilgamesh: Overview

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