The Epic of Gilgamesh: An English Verison with an Introduction

( 35 )

Overview


‘I am Gilgamesh who seized and killed the Bull of Heaven, I killed the watchman of the cedar forest, I overthrew Humbaba who lived in the forest’ Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, and his companion Enkidu are the only heroes to have survived from the ancient literature of Babylon, immortalized in this epic poem that dates back to the third millennium BC. Together they journey to the Spring of Youth, defeat the Bull of Heaven and slay the monster Humbaba. When Enkidu dies, Gilgamesh’s grief and fear of death are such that...
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Overview


‘I am Gilgamesh who seized and killed the Bull of Heaven, I killed the watchman of the cedar forest, I overthrew Humbaba who lived in the forest’ Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, and his companion Enkidu are the only heroes to have survived from the ancient literature of Babylon, immortalized in this epic poem that dates back to the third millennium BC. Together they journey to the Spring of Youth, defeat the Bull of Heaven and slay the monster Humbaba. When Enkidu dies, Gilgamesh’s grief and fear of death are such that they lead him to undertake a quest for eternal life. A timeless tale of morality, tragedy and pure adventure, The Epic of Gilgamesh is a landmark literary exploration of man’s search for immortality. N. K. Sandars’s lucid, accessible translation is prefaced by a detailed introduction that examines the narrative and historical context of the work. In addition, there is a glossary of names and a map of the Ancient Orient.

@UrukRockCity All the ladies want to get it on now that I’ve slain the demon. But I must decline. I’m a clean man these days.

I just can’t win with women. Before, nailing all the ladies was bad. Now I refuse to seduce, and the Gods send a giant bull to kill me?

From Twitterature: The World's Greatest Books in Twenty Tweets or Less

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140441000
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 12/28/1960
  • Series: Penguin Classics Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 58,260
  • Product dimensions: 5.17 (w) x 7.89 (h) x 0.32 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 35 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 35 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2008

    Epic of Gilgamesh a must read!!!

    Don¿t listen to these other reviews posted here. The Epic of Gilgamesh is a classic of mythology and literature and one of the best and most meaningful tales ever told. It is also one of the key foundations for western culture, civilization and religion. I read it while I was a teenager and fell in love with it. I can understand, however, why the some of the other reviewers may have been confused. This particular edition is intended for scholars and researchers NOT laypeople just looking for a good read. It contains the original translated text with all the gaps and bumps and has not been smoothed out for easy reading. Penguin Books however does carry a ¿normal¿ edition of this story and I suggest that those not seeking a degree in mythology or religion pick up that one instead. Again this is a GREAT story, a true classic that has stood the test of time.

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2005

    A Great Epic

    This epic manages to keep interest, especially because of its short length and quick pace. The hero is shown as more of a desperate man searching to be a god than it does a godly man in his quest for glory.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2004

    awsome

    The earliest quest for immortality. This epic from the Assyro-Babylonian culture (parts of which were probably written as early as 3000 B.C.) contains perhaps the earliest known example of man's quest for immortality. According to Samuel Kramer, the prologue has the oldest known reference to Lilith, who is an important female demon in Jewish legend. Apparently, a historical Gilgamesh actually existed and ruled Uruk in Mesopotamia in the first half of the third millennium B. C. (probably in the first dynasty of Uruk). In the epic, the god Anu attempts to curb the harsh rule of Gilgamesh by the creation of a strong and wild man (many scholars regard this character as a symbol of primitive man). After a fight between the two, they become friends and have a number of adventures. In one tale, Gilgamesh is wooed by a goddess. But she is rejected by Gilgamesh and the bull sent by her father to destroy him is killed (some regard this story as a nature myth in which Gilgamesh represents the solar god of the spring season and the goddess is the goddess of love and fertility). Later in the epic Gilgamesh's friend is stricken with disease and dies. Gilgamesh is devastated and wishes to avoid a similar fate. He goes in search of eternal youth and immortality (perhaps the earliest example of such a quest in literature). After more adventures, which includes him learning the Babylonian story of the great flood, he finds the answer to his quest; but, it is quickly lost. Even though this is probably the earliest epic, it has considerable allegorical significance. It is perhaps the earliest known description of man¿s quest for the meaning of life and the struggle to avoid death. What is learned is that death is inevitable and man should enjoy the life he has.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2012

    Please note: if you click on the nook-book "Buy Now" b

    Please note: if you click on the nook-book "Buy Now" button on the page for the 2003 Andrew George translation, you will be charged $9.99 and be sent a copy of the 1959 Sandars translation. If you want the Andrew George translation, I think you need to buy the paper version.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2005

    Save your self!

    I am not usually a complainer, but when I read this book, I was truly amazed by it. I had to read a book for history, so I chose this one, and boy was that a mistake!It is by far the most confusing book I have ever read, it was written in an ancient language, and should have stayed that way because it is untranslatable. I am 16 years old and I was lost through out the whole book! If you ever have to read a book for history, this is not the book for you! It was not only confusing, but boring, and it talked about innapropriate topics briefly for no purpose. Once again, I am not a complainer usually, but I wanted to give you the 'heads up' so you wouldn't fall into the same trap as I did.

    1 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2013

                   The Epic of Gilgamesh is an epic poem, which corr

                   The Epic of Gilgamesh is an epic poem, which correlates with the life of Mesopotamian society, is an excellent poem to read. I would definitely recommend this writing for AP World History students. Starting off with an elaborate introduction, the book sets the place's background information as well as historical events that are occurring. Furthermore, the prologue is a shortened summary of the whole epic, in general. The prologue helps a lot in deciphering the happenings in the long epic poem. Evermore, the poem itself is very interesting, in which it relates the story of Gilgamesh and his epiphany of immortality's reality.  All the chronological occurrences that happen all play a significant role in the meaning behind Gilgamesh's learned lesson. The lesson that he acknowledges is the truth that the closest concept to immortality is indeed the love and care of other people. Furthermore, without the characters, such as Enkidu and the Gods, the epic would not have been as successful. Throughout Gilgamesh's adventures, he learns how Enkidu, in the form of a companion, keeps him company and keeps him alive and jubilant. After Enkidu's death, Gilgamesh goes into deep mourning and sorrow prevails him. Also, the Gods, such as Shamash, aid Gilgamesh in his various adventures to show himself as supreme. Thus, the plot and the characters in the epic poem enable the audience to enjoy the writing.
                    Additionally, the author's usage of the events and people's relationships accomplish a major goal: teaching Mesopotamian social behaviors. The Epic of Gilgamesh is written so that human beings can understand how Mesopotamian culture was like and how the people lived back then. This epic poem accomplishes that very well. For example, religious aspects were examined, since people prayed to the Gods for strength and for redemption from misery. Evermore, it can be seen that there were social classes in the Mesopotamian era. In that time period, women were not respected as much. Therefore, they were often bossed by men off all places. This can be seen from Gilgamesh's acts with newly-wed brides. Thus, knowledge of certain aspects of the Mesopotamian culture can be learned through this epic poem. This poem has been an opportunity for the knowledge of Mesopotamia to grow. It is quick read, so the reader does not meander off into other thoughts. Evermore, there is a lot of repetition, which allows for the major concepts to seep into one's brain. Likewise, the context is also easy to understand. There may be some confusing aspects of the poem, in which the reader does not know what is happening. Though, when one looks at the prologue, the scenes become more evident and self-explanatory. Conclusively, since the plot is interesting, more knowledge about Mesopotamia can be gained, and the poem is understandable, The Epic of Gilgamesh should be read by all people. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2012

    I wish I could return it!

    Not the Andrew George version (2003).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2012

    Bad review

    Do not listen to the last review, this version is terrible!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2011

    The Epic of Gilgamesh Book Review

    It was cool and fun. Good read.

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  • Posted February 11, 2011

    Not for the romance novel reader

    If you are intersted in reading one of the most important early works of mankind, this is the book. If you need something for a high school book report, find a fictional version of Gilgamesh. This is an accurate translation of a very important work.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2008

    Thanks to the first reviewer

    Thank you for writing your review. I had planned on purchasing it for my 12 and 16 year old sons. After reading your thoughts, I researched a little more and quickly changed my mind. Thanks again.

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2000

    it was cool

    yup very cool(lol)

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2011

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    Posted June 29, 2010

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    Posted November 14, 2010

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    Posted May 7, 2009

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    Posted September 27, 2010

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    Posted January 25, 2010

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    Posted June 20, 2009

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