Heroes and Empires

This week’s material included the Epic of Gilgamesh, the rise of the world’s first empire builder, Sargon of Akkad, and the cultic rites of priests and priestesses in the temples of Mesopotamia. We read selections of the Epic in class—an ancient literary work that narrates the King of Uruk Gilgamesh’s quest for immortality—and discussed its importance for the Mesopotamian worldview. We covered ancient cosmology (specifically, how the ancients thought the world was structured), the centrality of the hieratic (i.e. priestly) system, Sargon’s birth legend and accession to power, and the Akkadian Empire he began.

The students were quizzed on Friday. As stated in last week’s blog, open-note Friday quizzes will be a regular occurrence.sargon