Purpose of Enkidu in The Epic of Gilgamesh
Uruk is a city governed by a priest-king named Gilgamesh. The king is a dictator who overworks, oppresses, and denies his people’s rights. He kills young men and exploits their wives. His subordinates believe that only gods can save them. When gods hear the people’s cry for help, they direct Anu, the creation goddess, to create a twin for Gilgamesh. Anu names the twin Enkidu. One day, a trapper sees Enkidu in the wilderness and informs the king about this. The king advises the trapper to use a temple prostitute named Shamhat to bring Enkidu to him. Gilgamesh and Enkidu meet in the street, and they get into a great fight against each other. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, Enkidu is a savior of the people of Uruk and a companion to Gilgamesh who drives the king through a long path to sobriety of a good ruler.
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