Wednesday, November 27, 2019
The Story of Gilgamesh in Sumerian Versions
Table of Contents Introduction Discussion Conclusion Work Cited Introduction In world literature 1, the story of Gilgamesh is among the oldest narratives around the world. The story was initially an oral tradition story and was later recorded on clay in Mesopotamia. The legendary story comes in different Sumerian versions from around 2700 B.C. The story talks about the powers of Gilgamesh who was the King of Uruk and the influence of other gods in the land.Advertising We will write a custom essay sample on The Story of Gilgamesh in Sumerian Versions specifically for you for only $16.05 $11/page Learn More Later on it was recorded in a Akkadian version and then reserved in King AssurbanipalÃ¢â¬Ës library. According to the story, Gilgamesh was a super human creature and a powerful king who could destroy and conquer others (Lishtar para.1). This paper seeks to critique the nature and powers of historical gods and their relationship to humanity in the past centuries as depicted by the narrative. Discussion Heroism of the kings is limited. The story describes how Gilgamesh oppressed people and slept with every woman. This made the people plead with other gods to provide security for them. As a result, Enkidu is created to counter Gilgamesh powers. Enkidu is however not as powerful as the superhuman king because he is part man and part animal. The limitation of the kingÃ¢â¬â¢s powers is further seen when Gilgamesh fails to prevent death of Enkidu. This incident occurred after Enkidu and Gilgamesh collaborated to kill the Bull of Heaven (drought) who wanted to crush Gilgamesh to death (George 2). Drought had been sent by Anu the father of Ishatar who wanted Gilgamesh to marry her. On refusal, Ishtar compelled her father to kill the King of Uruk. But because two thirds of Gilgamesh was a god and the other third human, Enkidu died. The other issue that emerges from the myth is that the gods in Ukur are uncooperative. This can be see n when the council of gods decide to kill Enkidu as a punishment for GilgameshÃ¢â¬â¢s actions. This exposed the other humans to the exploitive powers of the King of Ukur. This further shows that the people in Babylonia were subjects to the gods and had no voice. Human beings are also depicted as creatures that have no freedom. According to the story, Gilgamesh gods have the power over life and death but Gilgamesh still becomes worried after realizing that she would also die. When the people pleaded with gods to create a god who would match GilgameshÃ¢â¬â¢s powers, the gods created Enkidu and also brought an end to his life. In the story, Gilgamesh is determined to learn the secrets behind life and death. The story says that Utnapishtim was the only creature who had the power to eternally live. In his search for the secret, he meets Utnapishtim who tells him about the flood story that is also described in Genesis, in the Bible. The floods symbolically represent the end and punish ment for human kind. Utnapishshtim says that they were saved from the floods by other gods and that it would not occur again. However, human beings have to die since they are not immortal.Advertising Looking for essay on literature languages? Let's see if we can help you! Get your first paper with 15% OFF Learn More According to the story, the Bull of heaven is referred to as drought. This is an irony. Naturally, drought is known to be catastrophic because it causes human suffering. However, the Ã¢â¬ËBullÃ¢â¬â¢ springs from heaven where people believe that there are good things and that it is a beautiful land. The other ironic incident is between King Gilgamesh and Enkidu. Gilgamesh is portrayed as a god and a man whereas Enkidu is illustrated as an animal and a man. This is a clear indicator of the differences in the two divinities who were created to control humanity. Conclusion The floods are symbolically used to show that man is immortal and death is inevitabl e. The narrative describes the birth and death of Babylonian godsÃ¢â¬â¢. Gilgamesh is depicted as a remorseless leader who has no responsibility for his people. He is depicted as a womanizer and an oppressor. He forces the cityÃ¢â¬â¢s inhabitants to build walls for the temple so as gain fame. These are indicators of abuse of power and therefore the need to limit the powers of gods. Work Cited George, Andrew. The epic of Gigalmesh: the Babylonian epic poem and other texts in Akkadian and Summerian. London, Great Britain: The Penguin Press, 1999. Print. Lishtar. Gilgamesh and Enkidu: the soul siblings. 1999. Web. http://www.gatewaystobabylon.com/gods/partnerships/gilgaenk1.html This essay on The Story of Gilgamesh in Sumerian Versions was written and submitted by user Charles Doyle to help you with your own studies. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly. You can donate your paper here.
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