The Relationship Between Ishtar and Gilgamesh in the Epic of Gilgamesh

The Relationship Between Ishtar and Gilgamesh in the Epic of Gilgamesh

Length: 384 words (1.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
The Relationship Between Ishtar and Gilgamesh in the Epic of Gilgamesh

The story of Gilgamesh seems to be a collection of trials and tribulation. Throughout the book, you watch characters battle demons with each other, as well as within themselves. The tantalizing temptations that fill each character, ultimately leads to destruction and death. One example was the relationship between Ishtar and Gilgamesh. Both characters display a type of arrogant, 'ego-consciousness' (Neumann 63) that inevitably leads to subversive fate.

In the beginning of the story we see Gilgamesh as a womanizer. His submissive behavior is driven by his own self-sufficiency. When Enkidu forces him to see the reality of his own vanity, Gilgamesh withdraws from his obsession and embarks on a new quest with Enkidu; one that will fill his other ego, his masculinity.

After the slayig of the ferocious giant, Humbaba, Ishtar is filled with a lustful desire to betrothe him. When she approaches Gilgamesh, his new sense of self-worth derails him from Ishtar's 'seductive wiles'. (Neumann 63)He replies hastily, insulting her of her past. "Your lovers have found you like a brazier which smoulders in the cold,...a castle which crushes the garrison,...a stone which falls from the parapet,...a sandal that trips the wearer."( pg.30) It is ironic that Gilgamesh finds her past to be so depictable after he spent years of womanizing for his own pleasure. Does he think that he is better than her because he has abandoned his old ways? He really hasn't changed at all. He is still filled with his 'ego-consciousness', just in a different form. As he goes on ridiculing Ishtar, his self-ego grows even more; and once again will be punished for his actions.

After this, Ishtar is filled with so much anger, revenge is all she can think of. Her ego has been crushed and she must reclaim it. So she sends down the Bull of Heaven which kills Enkidu and leaves scarring not only on the people but the Gods as well.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Relationship Between Ishtar and Gilgamesh in the Epic of Gilgamesh." 16 Aug 2018

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

The Transformation of Gilgamesh in the Epic of Gilgamesh Essay

- The Transformation of Gilgamesh in the Epic of Gilgamesh In many literary works we see significant transitions in the hero's character as the story is developed. This is also true in the Epic of Gilgamesh with its hero, Gilgamesh. In this narrative poem, we get glimpses of who Gilgamesh is and what his purposes and goals are. We see Gilgamesh act in many different ways -- as an overbearing ruler resented by his people, a courageous and strong fighter, a deflated, depressed man, and finally as a man who seems content with what he's accomplished....   [tags: Epic Gilgamesh essays]

Free Essays
1766 words (5 pages)

Essay about The Role of Sex in The Epic of Gilgamesh

- In "The Epic of Gilgamesh" it seem like the women have all the power. The women have great influences on the men. In "Gilgamesh" sex plays an important role, and it also seems that sex has a hold on Gilgamesh and also Enkidu - not just a hold on them, but more of an addiction throughout the story of Gilgamesh. In the beginning of the story, Gilgamesh has a great lust that leaves "no virgin to her lover, neither the warrior's daughter nor the wife of noble men. To me, the lust in Gilgamesh's heart makes him a very selfish person....   [tags: The Epic of Gilgamesh]

Research Papers
812 words (2.3 pages)

Essay about The Epic of Gilgamesh Story

- The king of Uruk, who lived around 2600 B.C.E, Gilgamesh, was one-third man and two-thirds god (Gilgamesh, 61). Known as present day Iraq, Mesopotamia was where the ancient sto-ry “The Epic of Gilgamesh” was originated. The story talked about Gilgamesh’s relationship be-tween his close companions. Meeting the immortal flood survivor and giving him eternal life was Gilgamesh's long journey. The Epic of Gilgamesh teaches about the Sumarian society. Located in the city of Uruk in Sumeria, the epic of Gilgamesh was an old describing king Gilgamesh’s reign around 26000 B.C.E....   [tags: mesopotamia, gilgamesh, sumarian society]

Research Papers
742 words (2.1 pages)

The Epic of Gilgamesh Essay

- At the heart of a tale about slaying mystical creatures, scorning a goddess, and traveling to fantastical places, lies the narrative of a profound friendship between two men. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, an ancient Mesopotamian literary masterpiece, all of its events are centered around the development of the friendship between Gilgamesh, the tyrannical and stubborn king of Uruk, and the man created by the Gods to both complement and challenge his nature: Enkidu. Each of the three dream sequences in the epic represent different stages of Enkidu’s life – one portends his birth, another foretells the actions that will ultimately lead to his demise, and the final predicts his death....   [tags: Ancient Literature]

Research Papers
1244 words (3.6 pages)

Essay about Gilgamesh and the Quest for Immortality

- Gilgamesh and the Quest for Immortality   The stories of the hunt for immortality gathered in the Epic of Gilgamesh depict the conflict felt in ancient Sumer. As urbanization swept Mesopotamia, the social status shifted from a nomadic hunting society to that of a static agricultural gathering society. In the midst of this ancient "renaissance", man found his relationship with the sacred uncertain and precarious. The Epic portrays the strife created between ontological nostalgia for a simpler time and the dawn of civilization breaking in the Near East....   [tags: Epic Gilgamesh essays]

Research Papers
1044 words (3 pages)

A Comparison of the Epic of Gilgamesh and the Hebrew Scriptures Essay

- A Comparison of the Epic of Gilgamesh and the Hebrew Scriptures The Hebrew Flood story of Noah and his obligation to preserve man kind after God had punished all living creatures for their inequities parallels The Epic of Gilgamesh in several ways. Even though these two compilations are passed on orally at different times in history the similarities and differences invoke deliberation when these stories are compared. Numerous underlining themes are illustrated throughout each story. Humans are guilty of transgressions and must be punished, God or Gods send a flood as punishment to destroy this evil race, a person is selected by the gods to build a craft that will withstand the flood and al...   [tags: Hebrew Flood Story Scripture Gilgamesh Essays]

Research Papers
1297 words (3.7 pages)

Essay on Role of Women in The Epic of Gilgamesh

- About 2700 years ago there lived a king by the name of Gilgamesh who ruled the city of Uruk in Mesopotamia now known to us as modern day Iraq. Parts of his life are written on clay tablets believed to be the oldest existing written story of a man’s life. (XI). “The epic of Gilgamesh”, is the story of his quest for eternal life. In this paper I will be writing about the influence that the women in his life have played in his quest. The women are, Shamhat, Ninsun, Ishtar, and, “The tavern keeper”....   [tags: Analytical Essay, Literary Analysis]

Research Papers
957 words (2.7 pages)

Overview of The Epic of Gilgamesh Essay

- The Epic of Gilgamesh is an epic poetry that originates from Mesopotamia. It is among the earliest known literature in Mesopotamia. Many scholars believe that it originated from a series of Sumerian poems, and legends about Gilgamesh who is the protagonist. It is known to be the oldest recorded story in the human history that is over 4000 years old. The story portrays Mesopotamia’s society in the third millennium B.C.E vision of after life. In addition, the story tells shows the reader how the people in Mesopotamia believed in the gods, and offered sacrifices for their prayers to be answered....   [tags: mesopotamia, enkidu, uruk]

Research Papers
927 words (2.6 pages)

Essay on The Odyssey and The Epic of Gilgamesh: Life Matters

- In both, The Odyssey and The Epic of Gilgamesh, the protagonist goes on an arduous adventure that changes his inherent persona. In The Odyssey, Odysseus embarks on a journey with his crew to return home to his wife Clytemnestra after the fall of Troy. A notable incident he goes through is being courted by Circe but he is able to escape by rejecting her. However, he and his crew go through a lot of obstacles in their journey, some of which includes how Odysseus witnesses the death of his beloved crewmembers....   [tags: argumentative, compare, contrast, comparison]

Research Papers
1327 words (3.8 pages)

Gilgamesh Essay

- In the beginning of the epic, Gilgamesh was an arrogant, selfish person. He was the King of Uruk who ruled with an iron fist. Enkidu was born out of the begging of the people of Uruk from the gods and was a wild animal. A trapper saw him, went to Gilgamesh, gets a harlot from him, and the harlot teaches Enkidu the ways of men. A few weeks later, Enkidu traveled to find Gilgamesh when he heard the news of the rule that the King of Uruk aka Gilgamesh has always have to be the first to have a sexual relationship with a soon-to-be bride and then the husband second....   [tags: Ancient Literature]

Research Papers
724 words (2.1 pages)

Related Searches

This type of behavior displayed by both Gilgamesh and Ishtar is what guides them to destruction. I felt that it was what I got most out of the story. And it is still true today. A persons ego can really blind us from the reality that our conscious tries to make us see.
Return to