The Theme Of Immortality In Gilgamesh

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As Stephen Mitchell stated, “(Gilgamesh is) the oldest story in the world, a thousand years older than the Iliad or the Bible” (Mitchell, 1). Gilgamesh is the oldest text we have from the B.C./B.C.E times. Majority of scholars believe that the main theme of the book is Immortality. Therefore, it is arguable that other themes are much more important. Gilgamesh is by far the oldest known text in today’s age. Through analyzation, we know one of the main themes of the story is immortality; however, that is not the only theme nor is it the most important.The book stands the test of time because of a topical and relatable theme to today’s society. Numerous characters display that human growth is achieved through loss and journeys. Immortality in Gilgamesh is mentioned through Gilgamesh’s journey and the concept of leaving a legacy. Whilst Gilgamesh is…show more content…
He exudes pride in a manner only rivaled by Enkidu, his best friend. Gilgamesh and Enkidu relish in their brotherhood through fighting Humbaba and the Golden Bull. Their shared life is not permanent however. After they defeated the Golden Bull, the gods look down upon Enkidu and Gilgamesh, in which they decide one of them needs to die. As the book carries on, Enkidu is struck with a deathly illness and inevitably passes on. This changes Gilgamesh’s mindset towards death. In Mitchell’s translation, it reads,“If my grief is violent enough, perhaps he will come back to life again.’ For six days and seven nights I mourned him until a maggot fell out of his nose. Then, I was frightened, I was terrified by death” (Mitchell 167). Gilgamesh, who before was enthralled with the idea of dying a hero, suddenly became terrified of death. This growth, albeit not positive growth, was a direct result of the prior circumstances. The heroes’ shared hubris angered the gods who struck Enkidu down, causing Gilgamesh to lose his best friends. This loss causes gilgamesh to grow by fearing

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