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Gilgamesh: A New English Version | [Stephen Mitchell]

Gilgamesh: A New English Version

This brilliant new treatment of the world's oldest epic is a literary event on par with Seamus Heaney's wildly popular Beowulf translation. Esteemed translator and best-selling author Stephen Mitchell energizes a heroic tale so old it predates Homer's Iliad by more than a millennium.

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Publisher's Summary

This brilliant new treatment of the world's oldest epic is a literary event on par with Seamus Heaney's wildly popular Beowulf translation. Esteemed translator and best-selling author Stephen Mitchell energizes a heroic tale so old it predates Homer's Iliad by more than a millennium.

In the ancient city of Uruk, the tyrannical King Gilgamesh tramples citizens "like a wild bull". The gods send an untamed man named Enkidu to control the ruthless king, but after fighting, Enkidu and Gilgamesh become great friends and embark on a series of adventures. They kill fearsome creatures before Enkidu succumbs to disease, leaving Gilgamesh despondent and alone. Eventually, Gilgamesh moves forward, and his quest becomes a soul-searching journey of self-discovery.

Mitchell's treatment of this extraordinary work is the finest yet, surpassing previous versions in its preservation of the wisdom and beauty of the original.

©2004 Stephen Mitchell; (P)2004 Recorded Books LLC

What the Critics Say

"Stephen Mitchell's Gilgamesh is a wonderful version....This is certainly the best that I have seen in English." (Harold Bloom)
"Here is a flowing, unbroken version that reads as effortlessly as a novel....Vibrant, earnest, unfussibly accesible....The muscular eloquence and rousing simplicity of Mitchell's four-beat line effectively unleashes the grand vehemence of the epic's battle scenes." (The New York Times Book Review)
"Mitchell seeks language that is as swift and strong as the story itself. He conveys the evenhanded generosity of the original poet....This wonderful new version of the story of Gilgamesh shows how the story came to achieve literary immortality: not because it is a rare ancient artifact, but because reading it can make people in the here and now feel more completely alive." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

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    Laura Murphy, TX, United States 03-22-08
    Laura Murphy, TX, United States 03-22-08 Member Since 2007
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    "yes, I am a prude"

    I downloaded this hoping to let my teens listen to it, but was appalled by the subject matter. I was unfamiliar with its mildly pornographic content. Just wanted this to be in the reviews so other conservative parents would be aware.

    8 of 35 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Igor wallkill, NY, USA 06-12-09
    Igor wallkill, NY, USA 06-12-09
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    "Just ok. With a warning: NOT FOR CHILDREN."

    I was interested in this book mostly because of its literary history. I wanted to see what people back then were interested in through their writings. I would say the story was ok, but not great by any means. On the other hand, this is NOT a book for children, it contains very erotic and pornographic parts in it, so be warned. Would I recommend? Maybe only to people like me who really are interested in history and so you can say that "you've read it". Otherwise if you're looking for an interesting book, avoid this one.

    0 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Creative Word Books 04-09-06 Member Since 2006
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    "Dull"

    Of interest to historians only.

    1 of 21 people found this review helpful
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