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Comparison Between the Epic of Gilgamesh and Genesis - Essay Example

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Comparison Between the Epic of Gilgamesh and Genesis

The King lived approximately between 2750 and 2500 BCE. The first half of the story focuses on the friendship between Gilgamesh-king of Uruk and Enkidu. From the Epic, Enkidu is a wild man created by the gods as Gilgamesh’s peer to relieve him from oppression caused by the people of Uruk. In a joint mission, the two gentlemen began a journey to the Cedar Mountain where they defeated Humbaba. Humbaba was the monstrous guardian to the Cedar Mountain. This victory called for a celebration and they killed the Bull of Heaven for the celebration. However, this did not go well with goddess Ishtar who sentenced Enkidu to death as a punishment for the actions. The second of half of the Epic highlights how Gilgamesh was distressed at the death of Enkidu and this resulted to him taking a long and perilous journey to discover the secret of eternal life. He later learned that you cannot get everything you are looking for in life. He realized upon creation of man, the gods let death be his share and hence life withheld in their own hands. However, it is worth noting that Gilgamesh fame survived the death of Enkidu because of his account of Siduri’s advice, his great building projects and what he was told about the great flood. GENESIS Genesis is a Greek word that means “origin” or “birth”. It is the first book of the Torah or Pentateuch. Genesis is also the first book of the Hebrew Bible and the Christian Old Testament. Torah is a Hebrew word for “instructions” while Pentateuch is a Greek word for “five scrolls”. In regards to tradition, the Torah was dedicated to Moses by god. However, several scholars are of the opinion that Torah was composed from four different sources between 950 BCE and 500 BCE, which were later joined together around 450 BCE. The book of genesis is structured around ten toledot sections; however, modern commentators see it in terms of a primeval history. The book of Genesis is an example of “antiquarian history”. That is, a type of literature telling of the first appearance of humans, the origins of culture, the stories of ancestors, cities and heroes. Similarities There are several similarities between the epic of Gilgamesh and the book of genesis. One of the similarities lies on the flood account. The first point of similarities was the fact that God chose a righteous man to build an ark because of an impending great flood. In both cases, animals of all kinds were to be on the ark and birds were used after the rains to determine if floods waters had subsidized. After the rains stop stopped, both arks settled on mountain whereby Noah’s Ark and Utnapishtim’s on Ararat and Nisir respectively. It is worth noting that these mountains were not far from each other and sacrifices took the center stage after the flood. Apart from the floods, there was also the similarity in terms of the themes. Apart from the theme of seduction and civilization as revealed by Eve and Shamhat; the theme of love and friendship and God’s chosen people also stood out. Themes Love and friendship The greater understanding and great love that emerged between Enkindu and the King; makes King Gilgamesh a better leader to the people of Uruk allowing him to better understand and identify with them. The epic of Gilgamesh may lack a female love interest, but the revelation of erotic love plays a vital role. Love and friendship in the epic is not considered not only as a part of life, but also as a vital part of the poem to ...Show more


Name: Course: Instructor: Date: Title: COMPARISON BETWEEN EPIC OF GILGAMESH AND GENESIS GILGAMESH Tales of Gilgamesh were written on stone and clay tablets found throughout the Middle East. This is where the story originated its name The Epic of Gilgamesh…
Author : vellaferry
Comparison Between the Epic of Gilgamesh and Genesis essay example
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