Gilgamesh And The Literary Traditions Of Ancient Mesopotamia

Authored by: A. R. George

The Babylonian World

Print publication date:  August  2007
Online publication date:  June  2009

Print ISBN: 9780415353465
eBook ISBN: 9780203946237
Adobe ISBN: 9781134261284

10.4324/9780203946237.ch31

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Abstract

The Epic of Gilgamesh is usually cited as the masterpiece of Babylonian literature. This poem is only one of several literary texts about the legendary hero, King Gilgamesh of Uruk. In many respects the evolution of these texts over more than two thousand years can serve as a paradigm for the history of ancient Mesopotamian literature. This chapter sketches this history, with special reference to Gilgamesh and other narrative poems, focusing on key moments by introducing individual scholars (real and fictitious) from five points in time.

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