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Classical Literature - Essay Example

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The Stories of Genesis and the Epic of Gilgamesh are two of the most significant and influential works in the world, and there are both similarities and differences between the two. There are many different issues that need to be made note of in regards to each, and in order to understand both better as well as understand how they are similar and different, there needs to be a thorough addressing and discussing of one against the other…
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Classical Literature
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Genesis is the first Bible verse of the first chapter in the Book of Genesis, and it contains the first words of the Bible. Two distinct stories of the creation of humanity in particular are given in Genesis, and these are: Genesis 1:27-30 "So God created man in his own image; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, 'Be fruitful and increase, fill the earth and subdue it, rule over the fish in the sea, the birds of heaven, and every living thing that moves upon the earth'. God also said, 'I give you all plants that bear seed everywhere on the earth, and every tree bearing fruit which yields seed: they shall be yours for food'; and Genesis 2: 7-8 "Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. Thus the man became a living creature'. Without question the stories of Genesis are the most significant form of history in this regards, however although some of the events that are described re consistent with other historical records, there are many others - particularly those before the time of Saul and David - which cannot be tested for accuracy, and thus are considered by many to have been shaped to reflect certain persons' religious and political goals. "The history includes dramatic accounts of persecution, escape, exile, sacrifice, and global devastation by a great flood. It tells of a creator God who watches over his people, tests his people, and promises them great things if they honor his commandments. As any great story must, the history has its villains and it has heroes." (123).
Then there is the Epic of Gilgamesh, which is considered by some as being the oldest written story on Earth, and which "was originally written on 12 clay tablets in cuneiform script. It is about the adventures of the historical King of Uruk (somewhere between 2750 and 2500 BCE)". (79). The Epic of Gilgamesh is an epic poem from Babylonia, one which includes a series of Sumerian legends and poems about the mythological hero-king Gilgamesh, who was thought to be a ruler of the 3rd millennium BC, and all of these legends and poems were then gathered together into a "longer Akkadian poem long afterward, with the most complete version extant today pressed on twelve clay tablets in the library collection of the 7th century BC Assyrian king Ashurbanipal" (101).
In regards to the similarities and differences between the stories of Genesis and the Epic of Gilgamesh, there are many of both, and all of these must be taken into serious consideration. One of the most major similarities between the two is in regards to the fact of how they are both surrounded around their own leaders; Genesis to God and the Epic of Gilgamesh to the King of Uruk. Each basically describes the workings and actions of their supposed leader, and as well tells of the considered creations and works that took place during their own described eras.
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