The question Is there "required" background reading for "The Hero With a Thousand Faces"? got me part of the way there, but I'm still contemplating what the ideal reading-order would be in terms of Campbell or the actual epics (Beowulf, Gilgamesh, etc).
If going Campbell first, then I think it would allow me to get more out of the epics. I'm imagining it would give me a kind of framework to absorb the build-ups and other plot dynamics. However, my red line is spoilers. I have been saving Beowulf and Gilgamesh and a few others for a special day. So if reading Campbell first means that the whole story of Beowulf or Gilgamesh is spoiled in the process then I'm not on board for that. However, if there are just light references without explicit reveals in Campbell then I would be willing to read it first; if I'm saving them for a special day, I might as well do some legwork to get the most out of it.
Both orders seem to have their merit, so I suppose much will hinge on exactly what kind of spoilers / information is divulged that is specific to the epics. Can anyone with experience on these works recommend a suitable read-order? Would also be curious to see if that's how other readers also approach this work, i.e. what is the conventional read-order?