Beowulf And The Epic Of Gilgamesh

1667 Words Nov 18th, 2016 7 Pages
In today’s society, a hero is viewed as someone who embodies the characteristics of selflessness, courage, honesty, and integrity. The same characteristics were essential to be thought of as a hero 3,000 years ago as well. Two of the most widely known epic poems of their time were Beowulf and The Epic of Gilgamesh. Both Beowulf and Gilgamesh embody traits known exclusively of a hero. The poem of Beowulf and The Epic Gilgamesh both showcase the characteristics required of being an epic, in that they include a hero on a quest performing valorous deeds in an elevated style, while being protected by supernatural forces. The epic poem, Beowulf was based in the country of Denmark, while The Epic of Gilgamesh was based in a region of Mesopotamia. Although the poems were written and discovered in two separate regions, their cultures share similarities. Beowulf was strongly influenced by the Anglo-Saxon culture, which was monotheistic. The Anglo-Saxon culture also encompasses elements of Paganism and Christianity (History.world.org). Additionally, Gilgamesh was born into a polytheistic Sumer culture. Both the Anglo-Saxon and Sumer culture was widely warrior based. Both Beowulf and Gilgamesh owe most of their epic heroism to the characteristics of their cultures. They strived to be not only great leaders, but also heroic warriors (Anglo-Saxon England-UTA). The two cultures were also widely known for their adventurous storytelling. No one knows the actual age of the poem Beowulf,…
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