Epic of Gilgamesh Essay
The Epic of Gilgamesh is one of earliest known pieces of literature. Through years of storytelling and translation, The Epic of Gilgamesh became a timeless classic. This story is believed to have originated from Sumerian poems and legends about the king of Uruk, Gilgamesh. Throughout the epic, many themes arose about women, love, and journeys and the one I would like to discuss is the theme of death. Also, I will discuss if Gilgamesh accepts morality at the end of the story and the development of Gilgamesh’s character throughout the story.
The story mainly focuses on the character Gilgamesh and this wild man created by the gods, Enkidu in which Gilgamesh and Enkidu later become good friends. Together they go upon quests to defeat
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From there, he is to find Urshanabi, the ferry woman. Urshanabi takes Gilgamesh over the ocean and waters of the death. He finds himself in Dilmun, the place where Utnapishtim lives. Utnapishtim asks why he has come and Gilgamesh tells Utnapishtim the whole story about Enkidu dying. He proceeds to tell him far he has traveled and that he wants to know how to become immortal like him. "There is no permanence," Utnapishtim says. Utnapishtim offers him a test and all he has to do is stay up for six days and seven nights. Gilgamesh fails at the task and was not grant immortality. After a seven day rest, Gilgamesh was awakened and was told of this plant that restores a man’s youth. Gilgamesh retrieved this plant but while bathing a snake ate the plant. Gilgamesh is left with nothing. Gilgamesh never received the immortality he was searching for, but he got immortality of a different kind. When he returned to his people he ruled differently, kindly and lived through his subjects. Death wasn’t the ultimate lesson Gilgamesh learned about, it was the ultimate lesson of life and even though people die, humanity lives on.
Through death Gilgamesh goes through character changes that will affect him forever. Gilgamesh realizes that he cannot be immortal and learns the value of friendship. Death is something that had never occurred to the great Gilgamesh but through the series of events throughout