The Intent Behind the Enuma Elish (Creation Epic) Essay

The Intent Behind the Enuma Elish (Creation Epic) Essay

Length: 631 words (1.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Intent Behind the Enuma Elish  


    The Enuma Elish, often known as The Creation Epic, is often considered the primary source of Mesopotamian cosmology. However, to view the Enuma Elish as a cosmological myth obscures the true intent of the epicís author. The cosmological elements of the Enuma Elish are secondary to the authorís effort to explain the supremacy of Marduk, to justify absolute oriental monarchy, and to defend Babylon as the axis mundi.

The Enuma Elish was composed in Babylonin the early second millennium B.C.E. The decay of Sumerian civilization allowed the Old-Babylonian Empire to become the cultural and political center of Mesopotamia. Babylon was governed by absolute and despotic kings capable of wielding enough power to ensure the continued existence of massive building projects and large-scale irrigation. The harsh environment of Mesopotamia often necessitated the absolute rule by a king powerful enough to command the resources required to maintain civilization.

The poet behind the Enuma Elish sought to justify the position and government of Ba...

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

Essay on The Epic Of Creation And Enuma Elish

- The ancient reading, “The Epic of Creation/Enuma Elish” and the beginning of the Holy Bible Old Testament, Genesis are two distinct passages that share many different qualities. Ranging from how the universe was ever created, to the origin of power and rule over others, both stories reveal persistence, strength, and honor. Genesis 1:1-2:4, Genesis 2:4-3:34 from the Holy Bible, and “The Epic of Creation”, have similar beginnings that determine the endings of both stories. In the famous creation story of “The Epic of Creation/Enuma Elish”, a line that specifically stood out to me was, “When of the gods none had been called into being”....   [tags: God, Bible, Polytheism, Judaism]

Better Essays
745 words (2.1 pages)

Enuma Elish - The Babylonian Creation Story Essay

- Enuma Elish - The Babylonian Creation Story Like the Greek Theogony, the creation of the world in the Enuma elish begins with the universe in a formless state, from which emerge two primary gods, male and female: When the skies above were not yet named Nor earth below pronounced by name, Apsu, the first one, their begetter, And maker Tiamat, who bore them all, Had mixed their waters together, But had not formed pastures, nor discovered reed-beds; When yet no gods were manifest, Nor names pronounced, nor destinies decreed, Then gods were born within them....   [tags: Enuma Elish]

Free Essays
2906 words (8.3 pages)

The Epic Of Gilgamesh, Poem, And The Enuma Elish Essay

- Centuries before Julius Cesar, Galileo, Aristotle, Socrates, and albert Einstein; There was an ancient civilization that arose out of nowhere. They Settled upon the Tigris, and Euphrates Rivers, known as the fertile crest of Mesopotamia. These settlers are known as the Sumerians. The Sumerians were an agricultural society, who lived off their crops and the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers to trade goods. So when presented the terrible question “Why they existed?” The Sumerians believed that they existed to serve their gods by worship and dedicated work....   [tags: Sumer, Mesopotamia, Fertile Crescent, Uruk]

Better Essays
953 words (2.7 pages)

The Differences Between Enuma Elish-The Epic of Creation and Genesis 1:1-3:24

- In this paper I will discuss three similarities and four differences between Enuma Elish-The Epic of Creation (King,1902) and Genesis 1:1-3:24 as described by Michael Fishbane (Fishbane, 1979). These writings are selected to describe the story of creation of the earth and the inhabitants of the earth. However, each author has a very different view and way of explaining what they have interpreted the sacred texts to mean. The biggest similarity I found is that both indicate there is a creator. Each writing states that a being or person created each creature during the time....   [tags: god, life, man]

Better Essays
618 words (1.8 pages)

Essay on Comparing Enuma Elish and Genesis

- Comparing Enuma Elish and Genesis Since the beginning of time, societies have created stories to explain the mystery of the origin of man and the universe. In the Babylonian text, Enuma Elish and the book of Genesis-which originated in the same part of the world-one finds two very different stories about the creation of man. These two creation stories contrast the two societies that created them: the chaotic lives of servitude of the Babylonians and the lives of the recently freed Jewish people....   [tags: compare and contrast essay examples]

Better Essays
957 words (2.7 pages)

Ea is a Trickster God in Both Babylonian Enuma Elish and the Hattian Kamarbi Cycle

- ... One way that he does so in the Enuma Elish is by transforming Anu into his palace, while in the Kumarbi Cycle he allows for Tessub’s birth. In both the Enuma Elish and the Kumarbi cycle, Ea acts as a trickster god, deceiving and shaping the story as it progresses. In the Enuma Elish, after discovering Apsu’s plot to destroy the other gods, Ea “recited [a lullaby and]…put Apsu to sleep, [then] held [him] down and slew him.” Ea was the only god clever enough to realize what Apsu was planning and come up with a plan to stop him....   [tags: deceive, myth, culture]

Better Essays
592 words (1.7 pages)

GENESIS AND ANCIENT MYTHS OF THE NEAR EAST Essay

- When one approaches the biblical text, it is important to explore the cultural context in which the text occurs. With regard to the Book of Genesis, it is important to examine the writing with other contemporary works of similar geography and topics. The people of ancient Mesopotamia, where the oldest civilizations originated, produced a number of stories of creation and natural occurrences. It is important to note that many of the stories of the Sumerians, Akkadians and Hebrews began as oral traditions as the events they depict predate writing, so it is difficult to date these works on the basis of when these prehistoric myths were initiated....   [tags: Cultural Context, Enuma Elish]

Better Essays
917 words (2.6 pages)

The Significance of Creation in Hebraic Thought Essay examples

- Keeping Wellhousen's Documentary Hypothesis in mind, it seems clear that although the Hebraic ideas about the cosmology of creation were very similar to that of other Ancient Near East societies, the Hebrews had very different beliefs about the theological and anthropological significances of that creation. There are important similarities and differences between the creation accounts of Genesis and the Enuma Elish, which, using the Historical Critical Method, can be used to come to a clearer understanding of the Hebraic concept of the origins of the world....   [tags: enuma elish, babylonian]

Better Essays
952 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on Man And How The Earth

- Why suffering, tragedies, misery, and many other things that relate exists has always been a question that mankind has been attempting to explain for years. Different regions from around the globe all referred to this dark side as evil. It is seen that in the African myth, “The Quarrelsomeness of Man and How the Earth was Peopled” (PM 47) and the Near Eastern myth, “The Enuma Elish” (PM 91) that the existence of the female is the pure reason why earth consists of evil, as well as what a female is capable of that man is not....   [tags: Woman, Female, Enuma Elish, The Young Gods]

Better Essays
1560 words (4.5 pages)

Essay about The Epic of Gilgamesh is Truely an Epic

- The Epic of Gilgamesh is Truely an Epic An epic is an extended narrative poem in elevated or dignified language, celebrating the feats of a legendary or traditional hero.   The main characteristics of an epic as a literary genre is that it is a long poem that tells a story, it contains an epic hero, its hero searches for immortality (but doesn't find it physically, only through fame), gods or other supernatural beings are interested and involved, and it delivers an historical message.  The Epic of Gilgamesh is classified as an epic because it fits all the characteristics of an epic as a literary genre....   [tags: Epic Gilgamesh essays]

Better Essays
1699 words (4.9 pages)