Essay 1: Tiny Moments in The Epic of Gilgamesh

Essay 1:

Tiny Moments in The Epic of Gilgamesh
Intro and outline due in class (2 copies) 9/8

Final copy due in class and through TurnitIn 9/10

Below are references to several “tiny moments” in The Epic of Gilgamesh; by “tiny moments” I mean that as you read you might just slip right past small images, symbols or concepts, thinking they have no special significance. But when your read closely and pay attention to the details (and read the entire Epic) you find out that these little things really point to something much more significant in the course of the story.

So choose one “tiny moment” from the list below and write a clear, concise argument that convinces the reader of the significance of this particular topic. Your essay should be 500-750 words long (that’s 2 pages). Use textual citations to support your claim. This assignment is worth 10% of your final grade. Late papers will be reduced 5 points for each day they are late.

“Tiny Topics”
clothing (shedding or donning)
traps or snares

I will be looking for your ability to:

a)     Construct a concise essay complete with a title, introduction, body paragraphs connected by transitions, and a conclusion.

b)    Construct a single argument that is clearly presented in a thesis statement (please underline your thesis in your rough draft and final copy).

c)   Cite the text as evidence to support your idea.

d)   Fully engage the prompt question and follow directions given.

e)   Proof read your work so that it is free of grammatical and spelling errors

f) Critically analyze the text without the use of outside sources (no online research).

You must:

ü  Use 12 pt TNR font  (standard academic font)
ü  Double space
ü  Put name and page numbers on each page
ü  Use 1 inch margins
ü   bring TWO hard copies to class on 2/3  and submit the final version of your essay to Turnitin on or before 2/7

Citations: cite within your paper using the example below. Remember that the book title is ALWAYS italicized!

(The Epic of Gilgamesh, I 34)  or (The Epic of Gilgamesh, II 23-27)

(Book title, tablet number, line number (s))

***Also include a MLA formatted works cited page/section at the end of your essay.

(My thanks to the collaborative efforts of Dr. M. Bailey in preparing this assignment!)


Constructing a Thesis Statement: 

The most important part of your essay is your thesis statement. Remember that a thesis statement is the central claim or position you are taking on an issue. In a comparative essay, your thesis will make a claim about the ways in which the two items you compare are similar and/or different and then also advance how an understanding of these similarities/differences help us see something (you decide what) significant about the issue.

Finding your thesis: 

Sometimes you have a clear idea of what you want to argue in an essay before you even start writing, but more often than not you don’t. In order to locate your thesis, you should start by writing down what you know about the topic and what you need to figure out. You should also begin collecting evidence on the topic (in our case, quotations from the texts). Try to formulate your ideas as questions and your analysis of the evidence as answers. Once you have this material, you can begin to transform your interpretations into a claim you are making and going to prove, using the evidence you collected and the answers you constructed to your questions.

Use these websites to help you formulate your thesis statements:

General guidelines for crafting a thesis statement:

For crafting a thesis statement for a comparitive essay:

Temple’s Writing Center material:




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