The Evolution of the Gilgamesh Epic

Front Cover
Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 2002 - Literary Criticism - 384 pages
"The Epic of Gilgamesh is one of the world's oldest known epics-itpredates Homer by several centuries and is recognized as seminal to the cultural history of the Ancient Near East. Interpretation and decipherment of the story of Gilgamesh--fragmentary and contradictory as its several variants are--has been a monumental scholarly task, spanning more than a century...until Jeffrey Tigay teased out the epic's evolution. In this volume, Tigay traces the development of the composition of "The Gilgamesh Epic over nearly two millennia and through the several languages in which it has been transmitted. The result is a study both comprehensive in breadth and impressive in methodology. The author breaks from his scholarly predecessors in relying on documented textual evidence rather than on critical analysis and hypotheses. The immense contribution represented by this study has been acknowledged since its first publication in 1982. This reprint edition once again makes Tigay's groundbreaking work readily available to humanists, historians of literature and religion, biblical and classical scholars, anthropologists, and folklorists.
 

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Contents

The Story and Its Structure
3
ix
4
The Versions of the Epic
10
Critical Methods in the Study of The Gilgamesh Epic
16
THE SUMERIAN SOURCES OF THE AKKADIAN EPIC
23
The Historical Background of the Sumerian Tales
34
THE INTEGRATED EPIC IN THE OLD BABYLONIAN
39
The Contents of the Old Babylonian Version
48
Effect of the Prologue
149
A Sumerian Hymn to Gilgamesh
158
Blessings Curses and Threats
169
THE OPPRESSION OF URUK
178
THE CREATION OF ENKIDU
192
THE EARLY LIFE OF ENKIDU
198
Enkidus Early Life and the Values of the Epic
209
Differences between the Atrahasis and Gilgamesh Versions
218

The Significance of the Changes in Wording
65
Changes Due to Editors Taste
71
Assimilation
81
The Significance of the Assimilation
100
On Theological Changes
108
THE LATE VERSION
130
The Significance of the Variants
137
Section A
143
Harmonization of the Flood Story with the Rest
229
Nonharmonization of the Flood Story with
232
The Addition of the Flood Story to Gilgamesh
238
The Afterlife of the Epic
251
Gilg Ni 2NT79
297
Ancient Texts
304
Index
335
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