Legbourne East Wold Primary School – Mr Watson's Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘Uruk’

Captain Picard tells the story of Gilgamesh

Posted by eastwoldblog on February 1, 2010

I was looking for examples of stories from other cultures and this is the one which caught my attention.

I feel it proves a point.

The alien tells the story in very unusual English, and Picard manages to understand, which proves the point I was making about how “Oral Stories” can change over time, with different re-telling.

Picard tries to remember a story he can share with the alien – as he says “Even though you won’t understand, you still want to hear it.”

He chooses the story of Gilgamesh…enjoy.

If you have any thoughts about how the alien tells the story, about how Picard understands it, or about the story Picard tells, then share them here.

Mr W.


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Who was “Gilgamesh”?

Posted by eastwoldblog on February 1, 2010

As you know we are looking in literacy at Stories from Other Cultures.

Today I began reading “The Epic of Gilgamesh” retold by Geraldine McCaughcrean.


Here is some information about Gilgamesh from Novaonline – Gilgamesh Notes


Uruk (modern day Warka) is in southern Iraq between Basra and Baghdad; photo from British Museum

The epic of Gilgamesh is one of the world’s oldest surviving pieces of literature.

Only incomplete versions of the epic survive, with the longest being twelve clay tablet pieces (with cuneiform writing) found in the nineteenth century.

The first translation of a portion of the epic was the flood story deciphered from one of the clay tablets in 1872.

The stories that comprise the epic had long been transmitted orally before being written down sometime in the seventh century BC by one Sin-Leqi-Unninni.

The epic relates the exploits of Gilgamesh.

Gilgamesh was the son of Lugalbanda and the fifth king of Uruk, ruling around 2700 BC, according to the Sumerian king list.”  That means that it is generally accepted by historians that Gilgamesh was an actual historical figure, a king who reigned over the Sumerian city-state of Uruk in the third millennium BC and who was probably responsible for constructing the city walls, which archaeologists later determined had a perimeter of almost six miles.

The ruins of Uruk (also believed to be the city of Erech as mentioned in Genesis) lie near the town of Warka, in southern Iraq.

Uruk was one of the most important and powerful of the Mesopotamian city-states before 2000BC.

The modern name “Iraq” is thought by some to come from the name Uruk. Between 4,000 and 3,000 BC, the city emerged as one of the first major urban cities in the Near East.

So, do we know a lot of details about Gilgamesh?

No.  We don’t know what he really looked like, or how strong he was.

We don’t know what kind of ideas he had about being the ruler of a great city.

We don’t know what he sounded like when he spoke.

And we don’t know what he ate and drank or when he slept or how he interacted with priests, slaves or traders.


Can you research Gilgamesh?

Share what you find here…

Mr W.

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