- Reading level: 18+ years
- Paperback: 304 pages
- Publisher: Penguin; Reissue edition (30 January 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0140449191
- ISBN-13: 978-0140449198
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.8 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #38,952 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Epic of Gilgamesh (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 30 Jan 2003
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“It’s among the oldest surviving works of Western civilization, from before literature was literature. It’s my go-to whenever loss and life have tumbled me (often). Amazingly, and perhaps depressingly (When will they ever learn?), Gilgamesh tackles all the issues we are dealing with today: a bad leader and how he becomes an enlightened one (here’s hoping), environmental degradation, class and race — i.e. who gets to be called human — lust and love; loss and death. The language is haunting, incantatory, at the border of song and silence.”
"Andrew George has skillfully bridged the chasm between a scholarly re-edition and a popular work”
—London Review of Books
“Humankind’s first literary achievement...Gilgamesh should compel us as the well-spring of which we are inheritors...Andrew George provides an excellent critical and historical introduction.”
—Paul Binding, Independent on Sunday
“This volume will endure as one of the milestones markers...[George] expertly and easily conducts his readers on a delightful and moving epic journey.”
—Samuel A. Meier, Times Literary Supplement
“Appealingly presented and very readably translated...it still comes as an exhilarating surprise to find the actions and emotions of the Sumerian superhero coming to us with absolute immediacy over 30-odd centuries.
“Andrew George has formed an English text from the best of the tablets, differentiating his complex sources but allowing the general reader a clear run at one of the first enduring stories ever told.”
—Peter Stothard, The Times
“An exemplary combination of scholarship and lucidity...very impressive...invaluable as a convenient guide to all the different strands which came together to produce the work we now call Gilgamesh.”
—Alan Wall, Literary Review
About the Author
Andrew George is Professor of Babylonian in the Department of Languages and Culture of Near and Middle East at University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies.
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Together both of them win over some indestructible and unconquerable warriors. One of them dies and the other one seeks the truth, the real meaning of life and goes on an adventure that leads to self-realization. Ashoka anyone?
There is a stark similarity between this epic and some of stories from Hindu mythology where a lot of demon kings acquired invincibility by unyielding devotion to a certain god. But in case of Gilgamesh, he is not liable for his acts because gods gave him a heart that wants more or is never satiated. In Hindu mythology, either another god or same deity devises a plan to tackle the demon when he oppresses innocent citizens. That’s one concept I found interesting in this book.
Nice read with characters similar to old folk tales of India.
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