History[ edit ] Ancient Assyrian statue currently in the Louvrepossibly representing Gilgamesh Distinct sources exist from over a year timeframe. The earliest Sumerian poems are now generally considered to be distinct stories, rather than parts of a single epic. Although several revised versions based on new discoveries have been published, the epic remains incomplete. For the present the orthodox people are in great delight, and are very much prepossessed by the corroboration which it affords to Biblical history.
Yet one is more fully "mythological" than the other. On our way to discussing these tales in the light of mythology, we can connect and contrast these works in a variety of ways.
First, one of the most notable connections is the similar social function that these works may have The Iliad and The Epic of Gilgamesh both belong to a conversation on ancient literature and, to varying degrees, to a conversation on myth narratives.
First, one of the most notable connections is the Epic gilgamesh vs iliad social function that these works may have played for their respective audiences. In some ways, these are both works about national origins. The Iliad tells the tale of how a host of disparate armies came together to fight under one banner more or lessthe banner of the king, Agamemnon.
A league of armies was formed and, from there, history tells the tale of the rise of Greece.
This is the story of what it means to be Greek. It is also a story that defines what it means to be heroic as the narrative offers numerous examples of heroic figures from Achilles and Hector, to Odysseus and Patroclus.
The Epic of Gilgamesh does similar cultural work, as it offers a narrative of how the city-state of Uruk came to be ruled by a great king. Further, it tells the story of how this king learned compassion and humanity through his brotherhood with Enkidu, and demonstrated the qualities of a hero by defeating Humbaba and attaining wisdom in the form of a secret underwater plant that grants eternal life.
Seen in this light, both of these stories function in the same general vein in terms of how they communicate a civic identity and also communicate the traits held in esteem by the community.
While these texts differ in a variety of ways including the sheer scope of each story in terms of the number of characters, the length of the narrative, the complexity of the plot, etc.
The Iliad can be read as a myth and as an epic piece of narrative entertainment, but it leans heavily toward the latter. Gilgamesh, with its two part structure and its graphically drawn, clearly delineated archetypal characters can really only be read as a myth tale, according to the prevailing definition of the myth.
Myth tales, according to scholars like Joseph Campbell, are intended to be read metaphorically. The Epic of Gilgamesh presents us with a figurative scenario regarding human morality.
We are invited to read its characters and its actions symbolically. The king is unsympathetic and abusive, but is then challenged by a figure who is his brother and his equal. This binary pairing is starkly metaphorical in its depiction of the process of coming of age, by realizing humility through human connection.
This metaphorical clarity continues as the hero overcomes obstacles to attain the wisdom of compassion, even as that compassion is bolstered by determination and courage. In short, the figures in the story are vehicles for the social lessons embedded in the tale.
The Iliad may offer similar lessons but we have to dig much deeper and ignore quite a bit of the narrative material in order to resolve the complexities of Achilles, Paris, Menelaus and others into legible metaphors. This is not a tale intended centrally to convey a social lesson or to reify the rules of social coherence, which is generally understood to be a main function of pure myth tales."Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested." - Francis Bacon These are titles on The Well-Educated Mind list by Susan Wise Bauer.
Blue highlighted titles have been read and reviewed by me. This self-paced study guide is designed to help you pass the CSET Social Science Subtest 1. Use the entertaining lessons to enhance your.
The Iliad is about the journey of Achilles and the Greeks to Troy; the Odyssey, the wanderings of Odysseus after the sack of Troy; and the Epic of Gilgamesh, the meandering adventures of Gilgamesh.
The Iliad and The Epic of Gilgamesh both belong to a conversation on ancient literature and, to varying degrees, to a conversation on myth narratives.
Yet one is more fully "mythological" than the. Take a trip into the myths and battles of the Trojan War. Dress in drag or pretend madness to avoid the fight; join the aristeia of Diomedes; follow Odysseus as he steals the Palladium; and more.
This book offers students the opportunity to enjoy not only the story of the Iliad but the myths before and after in the Trojan Cycle— all in Latin epic style. The Hero in Epic of Gilgamesh and the Iliad 'One and the same lot for the man who hangs back and the man who battles hard.
The same honor waits for the coward and the brave.