Essay on Infamy vs. Immortality: Beowulf and Gilgamesh

611 Words 3 Pages
Immortality, monstrosity, infamy, catastrophe, might, and courage are all aspects of the epic legends of Beowulf and Gilgamesh. Though they subsisted in two utterly different historical eras, these epic heroes have numerous similarities and differences. For example, while they were booth deemed epic heroes, their mortalities were not equal. Beowulf had superhuman qualities such as having the strength of thirty men, but was born a mortal man. On the contrary, Gilgamesh was a demigod as he was born two-thirds god and one-third human by Ninsun, the goddess of dreams and cows. This is only one of the various instances of similarities and differences of these two epic idols. In addition to mortality, their leadership customs serve as …show more content…
The reader gains knowledge of of Gilgamesh’s harsh ways as Shamat, a prostitute, informs Enkidu, a wild man that eventually becomes Gilgamesh’s companion, of his behavior. Equally important is the way that these men carry themselves in the midst of battle. Gilgamesh is an impatient warrior that is known for carrying his side kick Enkidu with him to battle. One can witness his anxiety for battle in the literature when he confronts Humbamba, the sentinel fiend of the Cedar Forest. However, Beowulf is a patiend and independent competitor. In his battle with Grendel, a hellish, Dane preying monster, Beowulf practiced patience by waiting until the monster tried to eat him to attack. He displayed independence in battle by ordering his gang of thanes to remain on the barrow as he set forth in his final battle with a flame hurling dragon. But despite their differences they were both two tremendously powerful characters that generally set out for one mutual ambition, fame. The great king of the Geats exhibited his brute strength in the brawl with Grendel on his journey to seek fame. As the literature declares, Beowulf traveled to Denmark to save the Danes from the wrath of Grendel. When the infamous killer tried to seize Beowulf in battle, he embraced the claws of the beast in his fist until they crumbled. Similarly, Gilgamesh pronounces to
Open Document