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Epic poetry Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Study Guide for The Epic of Gilgamesh

Questions: “Prologue” and “The Battle With Humbaba” 1. What hints does the Prologue give about Gilgamesh’s quest? Gilgamesh will see mysteries, gain a knowledge of the world’s secrets, and go on a long tiring journey. 2. Why does the goddess Aruru create Enkidu? To curb his arrogance, to contend with the king and “absorb some of his energies 3. What is Gilgamesh predicting when he says that immolation and sacrifice are not yet for him? Gilgamesh is predicting he will not die in this battle. 4. What does Gilgamesh want Shamash to do? Gilgamesh wants Shamash to protect him and help him defeat Humbaba. 5. What do Gilgamesh’s calls to Shamash reveal about Gilgamesh’s limitations? Gilgamesh’ powers are limited, even…

Gilgamesh: The Epic Hero

In The Epic of Gilgamesh, anonymously written, translated by N.K. Sandars, an epic poem Gilgamesh grows from an innocent man to having wisdom about himself. Throughout The Epic Poem Gilgamesh travels from departure to initiation and finally to the return. In Gilgamesh’s departure he tells Enkidu what truly worries him. For example, “I [Gilgamesh] have not established my name stamped on bricks as my destiny decreed”(Sandars 8). Gilgamesh feels as if people don’t know what he is good for or what he is able to do. Gilgamesh wants to be famous and gain immortality. In addition, “Only the gods live forever with glorious Shamash, but for us men, our days are numbered, our occupations are a breathe of wind”(Sandars 8)….

Gita Jayanti Speech

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world”, said by one of the most memorable freedom fighters known to man, Mahatma Gandhi. These words Gandhi Ji said goes with the Bhagavad Gita very well. The Bhagavad teaches why we are here, what real purpose of this birth is, what type of problems we will face and how to face them. By taking in what the Bhagavad Gita has to offer us we are making a change in ourselves which will change the world. December 23rd is Gita Jayanti, the birthday of the Bhagavad-Gita. We know that the Bhagavad-Gita was revealed to Arjun by Sri Krishna himself in the battlefield of Kurukshetra a little over 5000 years…

The Epic of Gilgamesh

The Epic of Gilgamesh is an adventurous tale of the mighty King Gilgamesh that is so enthralled in making his name written in the stones of history forever. In his many challenges against this goal of his from meaningless slaughter of an appointed guardian to quarrels with the gods, he loses his loving brother, who was seemingly his other half. With the endless amount of grief the king is almost consumed in, his actions become selfish and fearful of death, which sends him on the quest for eternal life. Some interesting points about the reading include how femininity, repetition, and dreams are used to portray some of the oddest ideas. First off, femininity is something used so loosely, the phrase…

The Epic of Gilgamesh Summary

Gilgamesh is the Priest-King of the city of Uruk. He is a tyrannical king who works his people to death and takes what he wants from them. He kills the young men at will and uses the women as he pleases. The people of Uruk cry out to the gods for help so that they can have peace. The gods hear them and instruct Anu, the goddess of creation, to make a twin for Gilgamesh, someone who is strong enough to stand up to him and who will ultimately save him. Anu makes Enkidu, a hairy wild man who lives in the wilderness with the animals. One day a trapper sees Enkidu by a water hole and is frightened. He…

Alexander Pope’s the Rape of the Lock

The Rape of the Lock begins with a passage outlining the subject of the poem and invoking the aid of the muse. Then the sun (“Sol”) appears to initiate the leisurely morning routines of a wealthy household. Lapdogs shake themselves awake, bells begin to ring, and although it is already noon, Belinda still sleeps. She has been dreaming, and we learn that “her guardian Sylph,” Ariel, has sent the dream. The dream is of a handsome youth who tells her that she is protected by “unnumbered Spirits”—an army of supernatural beings who once lived on earth as human women. The youth explains that they are the invisible guardians of women’s chastity, although the credit is usually mistakenly given to “Honor”…

Antigone Minor Character

The play Antigone tells the story of one of Oedipus’ daughters standing up to the law in order to honor her brother. The story begins after Polyneices and Eteocles have killed each other and King Creon issues an edict forbidding the burial of Polyneices. In the prologue Antigone’s sister Ismene is introduced. Ismene while a minor character serves a great purpose in the play. In the opening lines of the play a dialogue is occurring between Ismene and Antigone. In lines 14-29 Antigone is telling Ismene of her plan to bury Polyneices even though Creon forbids it. Ismene tells her “We are only women; We cannot fight with men…. We must give in to the law”. Ismene’s refusal and fear…

John Milton’s Paradise Lost as an Epic Poetry

The epic poem has been regarded ion all ages and countries as the highest form of poetry and there are great epics in almost in all the literatures in the world. As Dr. Johnson has put it, “By the general consent of critics, the first praise of genius is due to the writer of an epic poem, as it requires an assemblage of all the powers which are singly sufficient for other compositions… Epic poetry undertakes to teach the most important truths by the most pleasing precepts, and therefore, relates some great event in the most affecting manner” (xix). John Milton’s Paradise Lost belongs to a rare breed of epic poetry in that it conforms to all the structural aspects…

Epic and Modern Heroes

Epic and modern heroes have many similarities and differences. Their personalities, characteristics, and physical abilities vary. These similarities and differences make heroes unique and memorable for years to come. Epic heroes have a lot of personality. Most people would call them braggarts because they always boast about their adventures, treasures, or battles. Now, heroes are more like ordinary people. A firefighter is a modern day hero and could reside in the home next to you. Modern heroes are not out looking to accomplish great deeds. Their actions are often spontaneously performed as where epic heroes look for people or villages in distress. Epic heroes also work for a reward, while most modern day heroes do not. The epic heroes’ characteristics…

Importance of Greek Mythology

“Greek mythology is the body of stories belonging to the ancient Greeks, concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world and their own cult and ritual practices. Modern scholars referred to the myths and studied them in an attempt to shed light on the religious and political institutions of ancient Greece and, in general, on the ancient Greek civilization. ” (citation) Mythical narration played a very large, and also important role in the lives of the ancient Greeks, they relied mainly on the mythical stories to guide them through crisis and gave them something to believe in; as many people follow God’s words and the Holy Bible in our current time. The epic poems “The Illiad” and “The…

Greek Mythology and Gods

* People today have scientific explanations for events like thunder, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. * The ancient Greeks did not-they believed their gods caused these events to happen, and they created myths to explain the gods’ actions. * The Greeks saw the work of the gods in events all around them. * For example, the Greeks lived in an area where volcanic eruptions were common. * To explain these eruptions, they told stories about the god Hephaestus, who lived underground. * The fire and lava that poured out of volcanoes, the Greeks said, came from the huge fires of this god’s forge. * At this forge he created weapons and armor for the other gods. * The Greeks did not…

The Muses in Greek Mythology and Art

The Muses were deities worshipped by the ancient Greeks. They were 9 women, sisters, whose sole purpose for being was that of the inspiration to mortal man, typically in an artistic capacity. The embodiment of the classical idea of the poetical faculty as a divine gift, these famous sisters dwelt on Mount Helicon, in Greece. The Muses were therefore both the embodiments and sponsors of performed metrical speech: mousike, whence “music”, was the art of the Muses. (nationbuilder) They were the “personification of poetic inspiration, the divine afflatus or breath which supposedly wafted itself into the poet’s inflamed mind”. The Muses of Greek mythology had one of the most important functions of all: to inspire poets and promote the arts…

Paradise Lost and Rape of the Lock

Paradise Lost and Rape of the Lock When we think of an epic poem, we rapidly turn our minds to a world of adventures and deeds of heroic or legendary figures. Amongst the greatest epic poems stands John Milton’s Paradise Lost, a traditional epic based on the biblical story of the “fall of mankind”. There also exists a form of satire of the classical epic poem that adapts the elevated heroic style to a trivial subject; this is called a mock epic. Alexander Pope wrote by these means the Rape of the Lock, a humorous depiction of a frivolous society. The title itself reveals the grandiose exaggeration of unimportant situations and the implication of importance upon otherwise obviously superficial attitudes….

Literature: China

The Epic of Gilgamesh is one of the earliest known literary works. This Babylonian epic poem arises from stories in the Sumerian language. Although the Sumerian stories are older (probably dating to at least 2100 B.C.), it was probably composed around 1900 BC. The epic deals with themes of heroism, friendship, loss, and the quest for eternal life. Different historical periods are reflected in literature. National and tribal sagas, accounts of the origin of the world and of customs, and myths which sometimes carry moral or spiritual messages predominate in the preurban eras. The epics of Homer, dating from the early to middle Iron age, and the great Indian epics of a slightly later period, have more evidence of deliberate…

Comparison Between Beowulf the Epic and Beowulf the Film

Contrast and Similarities between Beowulf and “Beowulf” Beowulf, an epic written down in the year 1060 by the Beowulf Poet, is the epitome of what true writing is, defining the standard of the epic itself. The more modern film of “Beowulf”, produced in 2007, is an attempt to do justice to the Beowulf Poet’s masterpiece. The poem and film have several key similarities and differences which influence the reader/viewer. Important similarities between the two include the heroic characteristics of Beowulf and the severing of Grendel’s arm; however, the movie does have some drastic differences from the text such as Beowulf’s seduction by Grendel’s mother, and how the product of this sin is his son the dragon, while in the text…