Enkidu and Gilgamesh

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Literature 201

Enkidu and Gilgamesh the Choices of the two

Gilgamesh was not capable of being a good King. Gilgamesh was very arrogant and oppressive and chose to be unfair to his people. “His lust left no virgins to her lover, not a warrior’s daughter or the wives of his nobles” (p.13). He claim whatever or whomever he wanted, His qualities almost appear beastly. Enkidu, who was Gilgamesh equal in size, and beauty, but not in strength, was made by the Gods, because of Gilgamesh harsh treatment of his people. Enkidu had been content running in the forest with the wild animals. He never wanted more, possibly because he did not know how much more the world had to offer; until a trapper and a harlot stole his innocence. He was happy to eat grass and share the animal's water hole. Enkidu loses his animal-like strength but gains understanding and knowledge. Once Enkidu became civilized he became friends with Gilgamesh and was able to tame the wild beast within him as well. Unlike Gilgamesh, Enkidu was not selfish and possessed a very caring spirit which was opposite of his comrade. At the end of his life, Enkidu briefly regrets his time with temple harlot, because of what it cost him. Shamash reminds him of the good that has come from his introduction to civilization. “Enkidu, why are you cursing the woman, the mistress who taught you to eat bread fit for gods and drink wine of kings? She who put upon you a magnificent garment, did she not give you glorious Gilgamesh for your companion, and has not Gilgamesh, your own brother, made you rest on a royal bed and recline on a couch at his left hand”. (p. 27) Had Enkidu not became civilized he would not have gain wisdom, nor enjoyed any of these pleasure. Better that he to have known these pleasures and die as a man, than to never have known them at all. Throughout the poem, women are seen as either gods, mortals with a higher status than most, or objects to be used. Take for instance the woman who...
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