King of Uruk, ruling 126 years. Gilgamesh and his son Urlugal, rebuilt the sanctuary of the goddess Ninlil, in Tummal, a sacred quarter in her city of Nippur. His father was Lugalbanda and his mother was Ninsun, a goddess. Gilgamesh is a demigod of superhuman strength who built a great city wall to defend his people from external threats and travelled to meet Utnapishtim, the sage who had survived the Great Deluge.
Epic of Gilgamesh (He who Saw the Deep or Surpassing All Other Kings)
Enkidu is a wild man created by the gods as Gilgamesh’s equal to distract him from oppressing the citizens of Uruk. Together they undertake dangerous quests that incur the displeasure of the gods. Firstly, they journey to the Cedar Mountain to defeat Humbaba. Later they kill the Bull of Heaven that the goddess Ishtar has sent to punish Gilgamesh for spurning her advances.
The latter part of the epic focuses on Gilgamesh’s distressed reaction to Enkidu’s death, which takes the form of a quest for immortality. Gilgamesh attempts to learn the secret of eternal life by undertaking a long and perilous journey to meet the immortal flood hero, Utnapishtim. Ultimately the poignant words addressed to Gilgamesh in the midst of his quest foreshadow the end result: “The life that you are seeking you will never find. When the gods created man they allotted to him death, but life they retained in their own keeping.”
Gilgamesh, king of Uruk. Gilgamesh, two-thirds god and one-third man, oppresses the city’s citizens who cry out to the gods for help. For the young women of Uruk this oppression takes the form of a “lord’s right” to newly married brides on their wedding night. For the young men it is conjectured that Gilgamesh exhausted them through forced labour on building projects. The gods respond to the citizens’ plea for intervention by creating an equal to Gilgamesh who will distract him from these objectionable activities. They create a primitive man, Enkidu, who is covered in hair and lives in the wild with the animals. He is spotted by a trapper tells Gilgamesh of the man and seduces him with a skilled harlot. His seduction by Shamhat, a temple prostitute, is the first
step in his civilization, and she proposes to take him back to Uruk after making love. Gilgamesh, meanwhile, has been having dreams that relate to the imminent arrival of a new companion.
Shamhat brings Enkidu to the shepherds’ camp where he is introduced to a human diet and becomes the camp’s night watchman. Learning from a passing stranger about Gilgamesh’s treatment of new brides, Enkidu is incensed and travels to Uruk to intervene at a wedding. When Gilgamesh attempts to visit the wedding chamber, Enkidu blocks his way and they fight. After a fierce battle, Enkidu acknowledges Gilgamesh’s superior strength and they become friends. Gilgamesh proposes that they journey together to the Cedar Forest to slay the monstrous demi-god Humbaba, in order to gain fame and renown. Despite warnings from both Enkidu and the council of elders, Gilgamesh will not be deterred.
The elders give Gilgamesh advice for his journey. Gilgamesh visits his mother, the goddess Ninsun, who seeks the support and protection of the sun-god Shamash for the two adventurers. Ninsun adopts Enkidu as her son, Gilgamesh leaves instructions for governing Uruk in his absence, and they embark on their quest.
Gilgamesh and Enkidu journey to the Cedar Forest. Every few days they make camp on a hill or mountain to perform a dream ritual. Gilgamesh has five terrifying dreams that involve falling mountains, thunderstorms, wild bulls, and a thunderbird that breathes fire. Despite similarities between the dream figures and earlier descriptions of Humbaba, Enkidu interprets all of the dreams as good omens, denying that any of the frightening images represent the forest guardian. As they approach the cedar mountain, they hear Humbaba bellowing and have to encourage each other not to be afraid.
The heroes enter the cedar forest and their fears return. Humbaba, the ogre-guardian of the Cedar Forest, insults and threatens them. He accuses Enkidu of betrayal, then vows to disembowel Gilgamesh and feed his flesh to the birds. Gilgamesh is afraid, but with some encouraging words from Enkidu the battle commences. The
mountains quake with the tumult and the sky turns black. The god Shamash sends his 13 winds to bind Humbaba and he is captured. The monster pleads for his life, and Gilgamesh pities him. Enkidu, however, is enraged and asks Gilgamesh to kill the beast. Humbaba curses them both and Gilgamesh dispatches him with a blow to the neck. The two heroes cut down many cedars, including a gigantic tree that Enkidu plans to fashion into a door for the temple of Enlil. They build a raft and return home along the Euphrates with the giant tree and the head of Humbaba.
Gilgamesh rejects the advances of the goddess Ishtar because of her mistreatment of previous lovers like Dumuzi. Ishtar asks her father Anu to send Gugalanna the “Bull of Heaven” to avenge her. When Anu rejects her complaints, Ishtar threatens to raise the dead who will “outnumber the living” and “devour them”. Anu becomes frightened and gives in. The bull of heaven (apparently the constellation Taurus) is led to Uruk by Ishtar, and causes widespread devastation. It dries up the reed beds and marshes, then dramatically lowers the level of the Euphrates river. It opens up huge pits in the ground that swallow 300 men. Enkidu and Gilgamesh attack and slay the beast without any divine assistance and offer up its heart to Shamash. When Ishtar cries out in agony, Enkidu hurls one of the bull’s hindquarters at her. The city of Uruk celebrates, but Enkidu has an ominous dream.
In Enkidu’s dream, the gods decide that one of the heroes must die for slaying the Bull of Heaven and Humbaba. Despite the protestations of Shamash, Enkidu is marked for death. Enkidu considers the great door he fashioned for Enlil’s temple, and curses it. He also curses Shamhat and the trapper for removing him from the wild. Then Shamash speaks from heaven, reminding Enkidu of how Shamhat fed and clothed him, and introduced him to Gilgamesh. Gilgamesh will bestow great honors upon him at his funeral, and will later wander the wild consumed with grief. Enkidu regrets his curses and blesses Shamhat, temporarily calmed. In a second dream, however, he sees himself being taken captive to the Netherworld by a terrifying Angel of Death. The underworld is a “house of dust” and darkness whose inhabitants eat clay and are clothed in bird feathers, supervised by terrifying beings. For twelve days, Enkidu’s condition worsens. Finally, after a last lament that he could not meet a heroic death in battle, he dies.
Gilgamesh delivers a long lamentation for Enkidu, in which he calls upon forests, mountains, fields, rivers, wild animals, and all of Uruk to mourn for his friend. Recalling their adventures together, Gilgamesh tears at his hair and clothes in grief. He commissions a funerary statue and provides valuable grave gifts from his treasury to ensure a favourable reception for Enkidu in the realm of the dead. A great banquet is held where the treasures are ceremonially offered to the gods of the Netherworld. There is a possible reference to the damming of a river before the text breaks off, which might suggest a riverbed burial as in the corresponding Sumerian poem, The Death of Gilgamesh.
Gilgamesh grieves for Enkidu, fearful of his own death, his object is to find the legendary Utnapishtim (“the Faraway”), and learn the secret of eternal life. Among the few survivors of the Great Flood, Utnapishtim and his wife are the only humans to have been granted immortality by the gods. Early in his travels, Gilgamesh crosses
a mountain pass at night and encounters a pride of lions. He prays for protection to the moon god Sin before sleeping. Then, waking from an encouraging dream, he slays the lions and takes their skins for clothing. Eventually, after a long and perilous journey, Gilgamesh comes to the twin peaks of Mt Mashu at the ends of the earth. The entrance, which no man has ever crossed, is guarded by two terrible scorpion-men. After questioning him and recognising his semi-divine nature, they allow Gilgamesh to pass and travel through the mountains along the Road of the Sun. He follows it for twelve “double hours” in complete darkness. Managing to complete the trip before the sun catches up to him, Gilgamesh arrives in a garden paradise full of jewel-laden trees.
Gilgamesh meets the alewife Siduri, who first believes Gilgamesh is a murderer from his dishevelled appearance, and tells her the purpose of his journey. Siduri attempts to dissuade him from his quest but sends him to Urshanabi, the ferryman, to help him cross the sea to Utnapishtim. Urshanabi is in the company of stone-giants.
Gilgamesh considers them hostile and kills them. When he tells Urshanabi his story and asks for help, he is told that he just killed the only creatures able to cross the Waters of Death. The Waters of Death, analogous to the River Styx of Greek mythology, are deadly to the touch, so Urshanabi asks him to cut 300 trees and fashion them into punting poles. Finally, they reach the island of Utnapishtim. Utnapishtim sees that there is someone else in the boat and asks Gilgamesh who he is. Gilgamesh tells him his story and asks for help, but Utnapishtim reprimands him because fighting the common fate of humans is futile and diminishes life’s joys.
We read of his journey to meet Ziusudra and the cultic knowledge that he brought back to the people of Uruk. There is also a short description of the flood in
the same context, as the gods debate whether to grant Gilgamesh eternal life like
they did for Ziusudra. The “standard” Akkadian version, of course, included
a complete flood story and was edited by Sin-liqe-unninni sometime between 1300
BC and 1000 BC. This longer flood story is, itself, based on the one contained
in the Epic of Atrahasis (circa 1800 BC). (see Gilgamesh flood myth for references).
Gilgamesh argues that Utnapishtim is not different from him and asks him his story, and why he has a different fate. Utnapishtim tells him about the great flood. His story is a summary of the story of Atrahasis but skips the previous plagues sent by the gods. He reluctantly offers Gilgamesh a chance for immortality, but questions why the gods would give the same honor as himself, the flood hero, to Gilgamesh and challenges Gilgamesh to stay awake for six days and seven nights first. However, just when Utnapishtim finishes his words Gilgamesh falls asleep. Utnapishtim ridicules the sleeping Gilgamesh in the presence of his wife and tells her to bake a loaf of bread for every day he is asleep so that Gilgamesh cannot deny his failure. When Gilgamesh, after seven days, discovers his failure, Utnapishtim reprimands him and sends him back to Uruk with Urshanabi.
The moment that they leave, Utnapishtim’s wife asks her husband to have mercy on Gilgamesh for his long journey. Utnapishtim tells Gilgamesh of a boxthorn-like plant at the very bottom of the ocean that will make him young again. Gilgamesh obtains the plant by binding stones to his feet so he can walk the bottom of the sea. He does not trust the plant and plans to test it on an old man’s back when he returns to Uruk. Unfortunately he places the plant on the shore of a lake while he bathes, and it is stolen by a serpent. Gilgamesh weeps at the futility of his efforts, having now lost all chance of immortality. He then returns to Uruk, where the sight of its massive walls prompts him to praise this enduring work to Urshanabi.
Gilgamesh and the Netherworld (also known as “Gilgamesh, Enkidu, and the Netherworld” and variants), although it has been suggested that it is based on an unknown version of that story. The contents of this last tablet are inconsistent with previous ones: Enkidu is still alive, despite having been killed off earlier in the epic. Because of this, its lack of integration with the other tablets, and the fact that it is almost a copy of an earlier version, it has been referred to as an ‘inorganic appendage’ to the epic. Alternatively, it has been suggested that “its purpose, though crudely handled, is to explain to Gilgamesh (and the reader) the various fates of the dead in the Afterlife” as “an awkward attempt to bring closure”, a connection between the Gilgamesh in the epic and the Gilgamesh as King of the Netherworld in Mesopotamian religion, or even “a dramatic capstone whereby the twelve-tablet epic ends on one and the same theme, that of “seeing” (= understanding, discovery, etc.), with which it began.”
Gilgamesh complains to Enkidu that various objects he possessed fell into the underworld. Enkidu offers to bring them back. Delighted, Gilgamesh tells Enkidu what he must and must not do in the underworld in order to come back. Enkidu does everything he was told not to do. The underworld keeps him. Gilgamesh prays to the gods to give him his friend back. Enlil and Suen don’t bother to reply but Ea and Shamash decide to help. Shamash cracks a hole in the earth and Enkidu’s ghost jumps out of it. Gilgamesh questioning Enkidu about what he has seen in the underworld.
used with permissiom from Paolo
|Cleric 7/fighter 25/ranger 10/Reaping mauler 5/Rogue 1|
|Hit Dice||30 d10 + 17 d8 +1d6 + 480 (777 hp)|
|Initiative||+14 (+8,+6 Dexterity)|
|AC||33 (+7 armour, +5 bracers, +6 Dexterity, +5 natural), touch 21, flat-footed 27|
|Attack||+ 49 touch, or + 55 Greatclub (1d10 + 25 x2), or + 56 Battleaxe (1d6 + 22 + 3d6
fire, x 3 + 9d6 fire); or + 45 shortbow (1d6 +4 x3) ranged, or spell +49 melee
touch, or +41 ranged touch
|+ 55/50/45/40 Greatclub two-handed (1d10 + 32, 19-20 x2), or +56/51/46/39 Battleaxe (1d6 +22 + 3d6 fire, x3 + 9d6 fire), or +53/48/43/38 (1d10 + 25 x2) (primary hand, Greatclub) and +53/48 (1d6 +22 + 3d6 fire, x3 + 9d6 fire) (off-hand, Battleaxe), or grapple (four grapple checks/round, 1d3 +14 + 6 every winning check, plus 1d8/round, plus 1d12 if opponent pinned), or +45/40/35/30 shortbow (1d6 + 4 x3) , or spell +49 melee touch, or +41 ranged touch|
|Space/Reach||5 ft. x 5 ft./5 ft.|
grapple, Favored enemy, Sneak attack +1d6, Sleeper lock, Turn undead,
|Counter grapple, Divine bloodline, Evasion, Iron skin, Swift tracker, Trapfinding, Wild empathy, Woodland stride|
|Saves||Fort +43, Ref +28, Will +27.|
|Abilities||Strength 39, Dexterity 23, Constitution 31, Intelligence 13, Wisdom 19, Charisma 30|
|Skills||Climb +24, Concentration +15, Diplomacy +20, Escape Artist +21, Heal +9, Knowledge (Arcana) +6, Knowledge (religion) +11, Knowledge (Geography) +11, Knowledge (the planes) + 6, Handle Animal+20, Intimidate +24, Jump +22, Ride (Dexterity)+11, Swim +22, Hide +16, Listen +14, Move Silently +16, Search +11, Spot +14, Survival +14, Tumble +11, Use Rope +16,|
|Feats||Cleave, Clever wrestling, Combat Expertise, Combat Reflexes, Deflect Arrows, earth’s embrace, Endurance, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Critical (Greatclub), Improved Grapple, Improved Initiative, Improved Two Weapon fighting, Improved Unarmed Strike, Leadership, Mobility, Power Attack, Track, Two
Weapon Fighting, Weapon Focus (Battleaxe), Weapon Focus (grapple), Weapon Focus (Greatclub), Weapon Specialisation (Greatclub), Weapon Specialisation (Battleaxe), Weapon Specialisation (grapple)
|Epic Fortitude, Epic Leadership, Epic Prowess x2, Epic weapon specialisation (grapple),
Epic weapon specialisation (Greatclub), Energy resistance (fire), Infinite
Wrestler, Penetrate Damage Reduction (adamantine), Penetrate damage
iron), Spectral strike, Superior
|Climate/Terrain||Uruk, or any terrain|
|Organization||Solitary, or with Enkidu, or with servants|
|Treasure||standard in his palace at Uruk, and see possessions below.|
|Alignment||neutral (evil tendencies, shifted to good tendencies)|
Counter grapple :When grappling or pinned, Gilgamesh can attempt either a grapple check or an Escape Artist check opposed by his opponent’s grapple check to free himself. If he fails the check he has chosen, he can immediately attempt the other check as a free action.
Devastating grapple : if Gigamesh pins his opponent while grappling and maintains the pin for three consecutive rounds, the opponent must make a fortitude save (DC 19) at the end of the third round or die. A creature with no discernible anatomy is immune to the effect of this ability.
Divine bloodline :+1 hp per HD (es, 6,5 instead of 5,5 on a d10), immune to polymorphing, petrification or any form-altering attack, energy drain, ability drain and ability damage; +15 vs disease, poison, Paralysis, death effects, disintegration; +10 vs binding, soul bind, Temporal Stasis, Trap the soul; Spell Resistance 35
Evasion : If Gilgamesh makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, he instead takes no damage.
Favored enemy : (evil outsider, aberration, abomination) Gilgamesh has a +6 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense
Motive, Spot and Survival, and a +6 bonus on damage rolls, against evil outsiders. Those bonuses are at +4 versus aberrations and at +2 versus abominations.
Iron skin : Gilgamesh has an unnatural resilient skin, providing him +5 natural
bonus on AC, damage reduction 5/- and energy resistance (all) 5
lock: If Gigamesh pins his opponent while grappling and maintains the pin
for one full rounds, the opponent must make a fortitude save (DC 19) at the end
of the round or fall unconscious for 1d3 rounds. A creature with no discernible
anatomy is immune to the effect of this ability.
tracker : Gilgamesh can move at his normal speed while following tracks without
taking the normal -5 penalty. He takes only a -10 penalty (instead of the normal
-20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.
: Gilgamesh can use the Search skill to locate traps when the task has a Difficulty
Class higher than 20.
undead : Gilgamesh turns or destroy undeads 13/day as a 7-level cleric, with
a +2 bonus on turning check and 1d6 bonus on turning damage rolls.
empathy: Gilgamesh can improve the attitude of an animal. This ability functions
just like a Diplomacy check made to improve the attitude of a person: he rolls
1d20 and adds +20 to determine the wild empathy check result. Gilgamesh and the
animal must be able to study each other, which means that they must be within
30 feet of one another under normal conditions. Influencing an animal in this
way takes 1 minute but, as with influencing people, it might take more or less
time. Gilgamesh can also use this ability to influence a magical
beast with an
Intelligence score of 1 or 2, but she takes a -4 penalty on the check.
stride : Gilgamesh may move through any sort of undergrowth (such as natural
thorns, briars, overgrown areas, and similar terrain) at his normal speed and
without taking damage or suffering any other impairment. However, thorns, briars,
and overgrown areas that have been magically manipulated to impede motion still
spells/day (0-4) 6/5+1/4+1/3+1/2+1. Caster level 7°. Save DC: 14 + spell level.
Domains Glory (granted power: +2 bonus on turning check and 1d6 bonus on turning
damage rolls), Strength (once per day, duration one round, +7 enhancement bonus
to Strength. Activating the power is a free action)
spells/day (1-2) 2/2. Caster level 5. Save DC: 14 + spell level
Greatclub (1d10, x2) of smiting (any critical hit dealt to a construct completely
destroys it, any critical to an outsider deals x4 damage instead of x2), and mighty
disruption (destroy undead if fails a fortitude save dc21)
Battleaxe of fiery blast
+5 leather armour (+2, max Dexterity +6) of acid warding (absorbs the first 50 acid damage/round),
with spikes on the surface, causing 1d8/round damage to opponents grappled or
pinned by the wearer. The damage is considered to be epic for DR bypassing
+5 bracers of armour.