4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on April 27, 2005
4.5 stars of 5
People haven't changed. A thoughtful reader will be struck by that as they read Mitchell's fine translation of this ~4,000 year old tale. Ok, sure, we're not off in the forest slaying monsters, or directly interacting with the Gods, but we're driven by all the same frailties and motives, and you can see that in every page of the Epic of Gilgamesh.
A very fine forward helps set the stage for what is essentially a short tale, providing context and interesting elements to look for as you proceed. While I often find it hard to get through an extensive forward, this one was written with a sense of wonder and joy that betrayed a deep affection for the story itself.
Also to be applauded is the use of end notes rather than footnotes. It would be far too difficult and distracting to have the significant number of notes within the text, they are a wonderful addition when read after absorbing the wonder and beauty of the story itself - many will find the tale of the flood particularly interesting, especially given the timeline established for the writing of the tale.
All in all, a wonderful interpretation of an age old tale, bookended by an excellent forward and strong supporting notes. Well worth the read.