The Epic of Gilgamesh is the first great work of literature.
An epic poem from ancient Mesopotamia.
The Epic of Gilgamesh was discovered by Hormuzd Rassam in 1853. The central character of Gilgamesh was initially reintroduced to the world as "Izdubar", before the cuneiform logographs in his name could be pronounced accurately. The first modern translation was published in the early 1870s by George Smith.
The most definitive translation is a two-volume critical work by Andrew George.
“Andrew George has formed an English text from the best of the tablets, differentiating his complex sources but allowing the general reader a clear run at one of the first enduring stories ever told.”
—Peter Stothard, The Times
"Andrew George has skillfully bridged the chasm between a scholarly re-edition and a popular work”
—London Review of Books
Penguin Classics; Reissue edition (April 29, 2003)