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Comparing and Contrasting Epic of Gilgamesh and the Bible's Noah's Ark Essay

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Comparing and Contrasting Epic of Gilgamesh and Noah's Ark


Many cultures have stories of a great flood, and probably the best known story is of Noah's Ark. The next most notable is the Sumerian story of Ut-Napishtim found in the Epic of Gilgamesh. In the ancient Babylonian depiction of the flood story, the god Enlil creates a flood to destroy a noisy mankind that is disturbing his sleep. Gilgamesh is told by another god, Ea, to build an ark (Monack 1). The Epic of Gilgamesh has broadly the same structure and plot as Noah's Ark, suggesting the possibility that the Biblical account has drawn influence from the archaeologically older Sumerian depiction. University professor Alexander Heidel concludes that these accounts are undeniably related (Fowler 1). According to theological considerations, the Epic and the Biblical versions can be contrasted as well.

In the Epic of Gilgamesh, the gods are depicted as lacking any moral or ethical purpose in their pronouncement of judgment (Fowler 2). In contrast, the Biblical record describes only one God who is just and moral. The archite...


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