The Epic of Gilgamesh is an epic poem from Ancient Mesopotamia and is among the earliest known works of literary fiction. Scholars believe that it originated as a series of Sumerian legends and poems about the mythological hero-king Gilgamesh, which were gathered into a longer Akkadian poem much later; the most complete version existing today is preserved on 12 clay tablets in the library collection of the 7th century BCE Assyrian king Ashurbanipal. It was originally titled He who Saw the Deep (Sha naqba Ä«muru) or Surpassing All Other Kings (Shutur eli sharri). Gilgamesh might have been a real ruler in the late Early Dynastic II period (ca. 27th century BCE).