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Gilgamesh, mourning his friend Enkidu, asks Siduri, the goddess of wine, how he himself may avoid death:

"Gilgamesh says to her: 'My friend who was very dear to me and who endured dangers beside me, Enkidu my brother, whom I loved, mortality has overtaken him. I wept for him seven days and nights till the worm fastened on him. Because of my brother I am afraid of death. But now, young woman, maker of wine, since I have seen your face, do not let me see the face of death which I dread so much.'

Siduri answers: 'Gilgamesh, where are you hurrying to? You will never find that life for which you are looking. When the gods created man they allotted to him death, but life they retained in their own keeping. As for you, Gilgamesh, fill your belly with good things; day and night, night and day, dance and be merry, feast and rejoice. Let your clothes be fresh, bathe yourself in water, cherish the little child that holds your hand, and make your wife happy in your embrace; for this too is the lot of man.'"

Epic of Gilgamesh, translated N.K. Sandars, Penguin 1960, 1972, pages 101-2

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