The Epic of Gilgamesh Summary


Do you have an assignment where you are to write a summary of the Epic of Gilgamesh? How do you plan to go about the assignment? Specifically, what are the steps you will follow?

We have good news for you. No need to stress yourself about the steps you will take in writing the essay summary as we will guide you. All you need to do is to go through this article.

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Sound good? Let’s jump right in into the matter at hand: how to write “the Epic of Gilgamesh” summary essay. The steps to follow are:

  1. Know what the tale is about
  2. Understand the key sections of an essay
  3. Write the summary essay

Step 1: Know What the Tale Is About

The first step in writing the Epic of Gilgamesh summary is to know the tale. So, to execute this step, you will need to read the story. Watching or reading summary videos and texts is another viable option that will easily assist you in understanding the tale. Look at two or more summary articles to get a better understanding.

Some detail about this tale is that it was originally written on 12 stone tablets in the Akkadian language. Archeologists believe it was written around 1300 to 1000 BC.

A Short Summary of the Epic of Gilgamesh

The Epic of Gilgamesh largely revolves around two characters: Gilgamesh and Enkidu. Gilgamesh is the king of Uruk. He is a despot ruler that violates the rights of his community. For instance, he subjects them to forced labor and defiles women. The gods become displeased with the acts of Gilgamesh and create Enkidu, who they believe will be able to tame Gilgamesh.

Unfortunately, things don’t go to plan. Gilgamesh and Enkidu become good friends. They go on missions together, such as killing Humbaba and the Bull of Heaven. The gods hold a council and decide to kill Enkidu by making him ill. Gilgamesh becomes heartbroken after Enkidu’s death and gets significantly afraid of his death. He wanders around the planet, looking for a way to become immortal, though it’s futile. After returning to Uruk, he changes his dictatorial way of ruling and decides to bring happiness to his community.

Keep in mind that we offer literature homework assistance. You can thus turn to us if you need someone to write your essays, summaries, poems, or any other literature assignment.

Key characters in the Epic of Gilgamesh

As we have seen above, you need to go through the tale to create an appealing summary essay. It is important to note the key characters as you go through the tale. It will make things easy for you when writing the essay.

The main characters you ought to know are:

Gilgamesh: He is the protagonist in the tale. He is a despot ruler, though he changes at the end and becomes a good king

Enkidu: He is created by the gods. At the start, he lives with animals, then later on, he becomes Gilgamesh’s best friend

Humbaba: This is a demon that protects the cedar forest from mortals and serves Enlil, the god of air, water, and earth

Shamash: The sun god who helps Gilgamesh and Enkidu kill Humbaba

Ishtar: The goddess of love who develops a strong admiration for Gilgamesh. Gilgamesh rejects her, and the goddess approaches her father (Anu, god of the sky) to devise a punishment for Gilgamesh. The two gods send the Bull of Heaven to destroy Gilgamesh, though it is killed by Gilgamesh and Enkidu

Siduri: A tavern keeper that gives Gilgamesh directions to Utnapishtim

Utnapishtim: A man that was made immortal by the gods and who tells Gilgamesh where he can find the miraculous plant that makes one younger

Step 2: Understand The Basic Sections of an Essay

Now that you know who Gilgamesh is and what happened to him. The next step when crafting “The Epic of Gilgamesh” summary is to know the basic parts of an essay.

So, what are these parts? They are the intro, body, and conclusion. We can write a summary essay for you or solve any other issue in your academic life. Simply place an order with us, and we’ll immediately help you.


The introduction is the first section of an essay or practically all texts. This section assists the readers in comprehending what the essay is all about. It generally has three sub-sections:

  • Hook: This is mostly the first section of the introduction. Its purpose is to grasp the attention of the readers. So, make sure the hook of your summary essay is interesting.
  • Background information: This section comes after the hook. It gives some background information about the context you will discuss in the essay. For instance, when writing the summary essay of The Epic of Gilgamesh, you can say something about how the tale was written on tablets and where and when it was written.
  • Thesis statement: This statement is usually the last chunk of the introduction. It can be one or two sentences. In our summary essay, your thesis statement can be “A summary of the Epic of Gilgamesh: how he moved from a despot ruler, a monster slayer, immortality pursuer, to an upright king.


In the body section, you divide the essay into specific sections. You can divide the essay as you see fit. In our summary essay, we can divide the body according to how things happened. For instance, we can have four themes:

  1. Gilgamesh despot reign
  2. Gilgamesh, the monster slayer
  3. Gilgamesh's pursuit of immortality
  4. Gilgamesh as the upright king

You can write a paragraph for each of these sections. If one paragraph is not enough, you can use two paragraphs to explain any of the themes.

Each paragraph should have the following details:

  • Topic sentence/claim
  • Supporting evidence
  • Analysis of the evidence
  • Transition


You end an essay by writing a conclusion. In this section, you:

  • Restate the thesis statement.
  • Mention the key points you covered in your essay. You can summarize the four themes if you are using the example we summarized above; for the body section.
  • Insert ending remarks. You can offer the story's moral when discussing a tale like this one.

Check out our guide on how to get good grades in college essays if you want to become a master in writing college essays.

Step 3: Write The Summary Essay

Here, we’ll show you what to do when drafting the summary essay. Afterward, you will see a summary essay sample about The Epic of Gilgamesh.

It is good to follow the process below when writing any essay. Experts have proven this process, and it goes like this:

  1. Critically read the essay instructions
  2. Do a thorough research
  3. Craft an outline
  4. Create a draft
  5. Edit and proofread

Critically Read the Essay Instructions

Go through the summary essay prompt as the first thing. Highlight or note down the keywords and action verbs. Also, identify the number of questions in the prompt and all the aspects related to formatting.

Do A Thorough Research

Doing thorough research in a summary essay means reading the text you will summarize. In our case, you should read the Epic of Gilgamesh. You had done this in Step 1. You can look at the short notes you created to have the story at your fingertips.

Craft an Outline

Creating an outline before you start writing an essay is super important. It will streamline your writing as you will know what to cover after a certain section, and you will not forget crucial points. So, ensure you have an outline prior to drafting the essay.

Create A Draft

Write the draft by leveraging on the outline. There is no need to make it perfect, as you will polish it up in the following phase.

You can read our guide on how to write an essay in MLA, APA, Chicago, and Harvard to learn more about formatting essays.

Edit and Proofread

The last part of writing your summary essay is editing and proofreading. You can use several resources to accomplish this procedure effectively. For instance, you can utilize tools proofreading tools like Grammarly and Pro Writing Aid and plagiarism tools such as Duplichecker, UniCheck, and PlagScan. We also offer editing and proofreading services at affordable rates.

Sample of “The Epic of Gilgamesh” Summary Essay

This section is a sample of the Gilgamesh tale. So, if you are instructed to write a summary of The Epic of Gilgamesh, it will look as follows. Remember that we provide academic help in any discipline. Just place an order with us when you want an expert to assist you with your assignment at any time of the day or year.

Here is the sample:

"Kings protect their people and carry battalions to fight their cause. Nonetheless, this is not the case with King Gilgamesh. Gilgamesh was despised by his community due to his immoral acts and only carried one person, Enkidu, to fight his battles. This essay will thus look at The Epic of Gilgamesh, focusing on four themes: Gilgamesh's despot ruling, his battles with monsters, his pursuit of immorality, and Gilgamesh's redemption into an upright king.

From the start, Gilgamesh is portrayed as a despot king. He engages in treacherous acts such as forcing people to build projects and defiling women. This leads to the gods creating Enkidu, who they believe will be able to tame Gilgamesh.

Gilgamesh and Enkidu become best friends, and the two slay monsters. The first beast they deal with is Humbaba, the demon protector of the cedar forest. Later, they kill the Bull of Heaven, sent by two gods, Ishtar and Anu, to punish Gilgamesh. Days later, Enkidu gets sick and dies, which scares Gilgamesh.

Gilgamesh starts to pursue immorality to cheat death. He journeys the seas and mountains. He finally arrives at an immortal man, Utnapishtim, through the assistance of Siduri. He is told of a plant that can make him younger, though it is stolen by a snake as soon as Gilgamesh gets hold of it.

Gilgamesh returns to Uruk disappointed, though with a change of heart. He starts to pursue happiness, and that is when he becomes an upright king.

In summary, Gilgamesh went through a lot to shift from a despot ruler to an upright one. He became a monster slayer and pursued immorality, which he could not get. In the end, he chose to lead a good example. Death is inevitable, even for a king."

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the story of Gilgamesh in the Bible?

Some aspects of the story of Gilgamesh are comparable to those in the Bible. For instance, the narration of Utnapishtim of how he built a massive boat corresponds to what Noah did in the Bible. The other instance is the snake betraying Gilgamesh, which is evident in the bible, where a snake makes Adam and Eve eat the forbidden fruit.

2. What is the main point of The Epic of Gilgamesh?

The main points that you can take away from the tale of Gilgamesh are:

  • Love can cause unimaginable changes
  • The gods are vicious
  • Death is inevitable

3. What is the moral of Gilgamesh's story?

Death is inevitable. Gilgamesh betrays his family and friends to find a way to be immortal. It was a futile mission.

4. What happens at the end of The Epic of Gilgamesh?

Gilgamesh returns to his kingdom, Uruk, as a mortal man, having lost the miraculous plant, and changes his way of life. He seeks happiness for his people and himself.

In A Nutshell

The Epic of Gilgamesh is one of the few tales originally scribbled on an actual stone tablet. Although Gilgamesh could not beat death, he immortalized himself in literature. Thousands of years later, as far as the present day, students are told to write a summary of Gilgamesh’s tale. If you are at this point, know that this guide is for you. It has listed three simple steps for writing a summary essay of Gilgamesh’s epic. You can place the order with us if you want us to write the essay for you.

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author Melaine

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Melanie is a seasoned writer with more than 8 years of experience. She is passionate about academia and works off the clock to ensure she write the topnotch content for her readers.

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