Myths from Mesopotamia: Creation, the Flood, Gilgamesh, and Others Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Stephanie Dalley
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What happens to the plant Gilgamesh took from the Apsu?

2. On their journey to the Pine Forest, what plagues Gilgamesh?

3. What does Gilgamesh use to cross over the deadly water past the mountains and darkness?

4. How many myths are contained in this book?

5. What reason does Ut-napishtium (or Atrahasis) give Gilgamesh for why only he is allowed to be immortal?

Short Essay Questions

1. According to the story of Atrahasis, how and why was man created?

2. What arrangement is made for Ishtar's release from the Underworld?

3. Why are several of the myths in this book fragmented or missing whole sections?

4. In the Armana version of the story of Nergal and Ereshkigal, what happens when Nergal goes to the Underworld?

5. Describe Ishtar's journey to see her sister, Ereshkigal, in the Underworld.

6. In the Mesopotamian myths discussed in this book, what early beliefs are depicted?

7. How does Ishtar gain entrance into the Underworld?

8. How do the fates of Dumuzi and Belili explain the seasons and rituals of Mesopotamia?

9. What is Nergal's offense against Namtar and his penance?

10. What must Namtar avoid doing while in the Underworld serving out his punishment?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay about the similarities between the Mesopotamian and Biblical flood myths in the following format:

Part 1) The over-indulgence and destruction of mankind.

Part 2) The similarities and differences of Noah and Atrahasis.

Part 3) The relationship between mankind and their god or gods.

Part 4) The final flood.

Part 5) The reconstruction of Earth and mankind.

Essay Topic 2

How are life and death intertwined in Mesopotamian culture? For what reasons, as depicted within the myths themselves, is there a fluidity between life and death? How does this reflect upon the beliefs of this culture? Using only the text, compose a strong thesis based on this idea. Cite examples from not only the myths but also the introductions and notes provided by the author.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the role of women within Mesopotamian culture as depicted within these myths in the following format:

Part 1) Shamhat.

Part 2) The story of Atrahasis to explain childbearing.

Part 3) Ishtar's relationships to men.

Part 4) Ereshkigal as both queen and loner.

Part 5) Belet-ili and her contributions to both deities and mankind.

Cite specific examples from the text to support your answers.

(see the answer keys)

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