Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate December 2001

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Philip Morrison Mrs. Federinko World Literature I 26 November 2001 The search for immortality seems to be an obsession for many men and women all throughout history. In the epic of Gilgamesh a man investigates the possibility of immortality following the saddening death of his friend, Enkidu. The dieing of his friend Enkidu opened his eyes to realize that neither him nor his companion was immortal. Gilgamesh, feeling the fear his own mortality searches for a way to preserve himself.

In addition to searching for physical immortality Gilgamesh also searches for spiritual immortality. Gilgamesh wishes to give the flower of immortality to the elders of the city to rejuvenate them and return the youth to the kingdom of Uruk. This show of selflessness and concern for his people is a sight that might not have been seen a short while before his meeting with Enkidu. Enkidu had strong influences on Gilgamesh, which changed his life.

Gilgamesh clearly tries in the end to restore the youth to the elders for the purpose of keeping the memory of not only himself but also Enkidu alive. As long as your culture and relatives survive so do you. Every relative has a piece of you carried along with him or her.

But the real question is why didn't Gilgamesh just eat the plant and live as an immortal? Perhaps it was because if he were to eat the plant he would become a lonely king who just would become more and more saddened by his people whom he loved die over and over again and only he would remain. His only friend Enkidu was gone and his father's words of warning him of the loneliness perhaps convinced him of his course of action.

Gilgamesh has been through many adventures and over the...