Gilgamesh And Odysseus: True Epic Heroes

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Maurice Patterson March 11,2009 CH 201.024 Professor Fileva Gilgamesh and Odysseus: True Epic Heroes Epic poems have been around for centuries now and are considered a lengthy narrative that concerns serious subjects pertaining to events significant to a nation or culture and heroic deeds. Common characteristics of epic poems include: tremendous adventures, superhuman deeds, dignified language and a range of literary techniques from dramatic to romantic. The first epic poems, such as the Odyssey and the Iliad, were established through oral tradition and later written down to keep better track of the poems themselves. One key concept of an epic poem is the presence of a hero. A hero in an epic poem is typically an important figure in a legend or history that holds some type of royalty and embarks on a cyclical adventure or quest. On this adventure the hero faces many adversities and obstacles but eventually returns home significantly changed from the journey. These heroes embody bravery, intelligence and loyalty as well as fear that they must overcome in order to protect their family, friends and countries. Two of the most famous epic heroes are Gilgamesh and Odysseus who both have to overcome great difficulty in order to protect their people of their countries as well as their family and friends. Gilgamesh was a famous epic hero for various different reasons. Gilgamesh was a strong powerful leader who was two thirds God and one third human. Throughout the Epic of Gilgamesh he shows intelligence, skills, valor and reverence. One reason he was a hero is how he goes fearlessly into battle. He goes fearlessly into battle when he fights the powerful beast Humbaba, as well as when Ishtar tells Anu to release the mighty bull to trample Gilgamesh. Gilgamesh was triumphant in both battles of ridding his city of harm. Another characteristic that made Gilgamesh a hero

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