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Gilgamesh Quests and Their Comparison

The Epic of Gilgamesh is the oldest known record of myths that presents a two-part story about the king of Uruk. This piece of literature provides one of the earliest looks at many topics that were crucial in the society of that time. Namely, religion and mortality are presented in great detail in this epic. The comparison of the two parts of the story holds the answer to the nature of the social norms of Mesopotamia. This essay will discuss the differences between the first and the second quests described in this myth.

The direct involvement of gods is a prominent part of the first quest. From the very beginning, gods were responding to the prayers and intervening in the affairs of mortals (Sandars, 2006). They were both helpful and detrimental to Gilgamesh’s first quest. However, their presence if the second part was nonexistent, and their representation changed to strictly negative. The second notable difference is the drive of the main character and his attitude. Gilgamesh was initially driven by lust, anger, and arrogance. The death of his friend, Enkidu, made him act out of fear and, eventually, wisdom. The third difference is the plans and aspirations of humankind and its king. The first story begins with humanity being morally weak, just like its leader. At the end of the second story, civilization is seen as the pinnacle of existence, and its king swore to leave the city as the monument to greatness.

In conclusion, the primary differences are Gilgamesh’s character and main drive, the direct involvement of gods in the story, and humanity’s status. The story seems to evolve alongside the main character, which might be the representation of societal changes in Mesopotamia. The representation of gods changes from the beneficiaries to the dangerous beings that threaten humanity, while Gilgamesh himself performs a reverse transformation. Humankind itself evolves with the character, as its magnificence is recognized and achievements are respected.

Reference

Sandars, N. K. (Trans.). (2006). The epic of Gilgamesh. Penguin Classics.

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1. StudyKraken. "Gilgamesh Quests and Their Comparison." November 19, 2022. https://studykraken.com/gilgamesh-quests-and-their-comparison/.


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StudyKraken. "Gilgamesh Quests and Their Comparison." November 19, 2022. https://studykraken.com/gilgamesh-quests-and-their-comparison/.

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StudyKraken. 2022. "Gilgamesh Quests and Their Comparison." November 19, 2022. https://studykraken.com/gilgamesh-quests-and-their-comparison/.

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StudyKraken. (2022) 'Gilgamesh Quests and Their Comparison'. 19 November.

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