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

Stephanie Dalley
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 155 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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 mercy does Ea grant to Gilgamesh in response to the man's prayers?

2. What theory does the author suggest as the origin for the tale of Atrahasis?

3. Of what is Ishtar the goddess?

4. Who tells Atrahasis to build a boat in anticipation of Ellil flooding the world?

5. Why does the author of this book believe it is necessary to understand where the stories of several different cultures originated?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. How does Enkidu escape from the Underworld on an alternate tablet?

3. Why does all sexual activity on Earth stop while Ishtar is in Kurnugi?

4. Describe Gilgamesh's journey to see Ut-napishtim (or Atrahasis)?

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

6. How does mankind react to the drought and famine before the ultimate appearance of the flood?

7. Why is Namtar sent above ground to the feast in the story of Nergal and Ereshkigal?

8. How does Atrahasis initially save the world from ruin before the flood?

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

10. How does Ishtar gain entrance into the Underworld?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout the stories from Mesopotamia, there are several myths regarding the rise of a hero. Discuss the "hero-myth" in the following format:

Part 1) Defining a hero by Mesopotamian standards.

Part 2) Atrahasis.

Part 3) Marduk.

Part 4) Ninurta.

Essay Topic 2

Compare and contrast the characters of Ishtar and Ereshkigal. How are they different? How are they the same? What constitutes their relationship? What is significant about their respective roles in life and how they are treated throughout the myths presented in this novel? In particular, be sure to focus on Ishtar's behavior around other gods and humans and Ereshkigal's isolation in the Underworld. Cite specific examples from the text to support your answers.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the differences in the separate versions of Nergal and Ereshkigal's myth. How does Nergal and Ereshkigal's character development change? What is significant about the Old Babylonian version being progressively more violent and less sympathetic towards Ereshkigal? How does Ea's involvement change in each story? Develop a clear thesis on this topic and cite specific examples from the text to support your answers.

(see the answer keys)

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