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From: m.driussi@genie.com
Subject: (urth) Severian's family
Date: Mon, 30 Jun 97 17:38:00 GMT

[Posted from URTH, a mailing list about Gene Wolfe's New Sun and other works]

Reply:  Item #2453278 from URTH@LISTS.BEST.COM@INET#

"Is there a sister in the text?  A father?  A mother?

     "We are told that 'Severian' is a name usually given to one of a
pair of twins.  If there is a sister, she will have been raised in
the Witches' Keep in the Citadel, and she may well make some sort of
appearance.  I have myself gotten nowhere in identifying her, or in
tracing any significance that might attach to her presence in 'The
Book,' though if she does appear I suspect it is on the road to
Thrax" (Clute, Wolfe essay dated 1986, STROKES, p. 164).

"Other relations lurk further back.  Ava, the Pelerine who questions
Severian in the lazaret, asks whether his name was not `one of those
brother sister names . . . Severian and Severa.'  Severian does not
confirm this, any more than he can say whether he has a sister; but
little Severian had a sister Severa, who was in fact his twin.  He
too asked if Severian had a sister.  No question asked twice can be

[Brief paragraph running through a few candidates.]

     "A more appealing candidate is Merryn, the witch who appears
with the Cumaean atop the home of Apu-Punchau [i.e., on the road to
Thrax]" (Gregory Feeley, "The Evidence of Things Not Shown: Family
Romance in THE BOOK OF THE NEW SUN," "The New York Review of Science
Fiction No. 31," March 1991, p. 9).


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