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From: tony.ellis@futurenet.co.uk (Tony Ellis)
Subject: (urth) Finn M'Cool and his Cat
Date: 20 Apr 1998 13:03:54 +0100

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

 Finn M'Cool and his Cat

Rostrum wrote:
>The story of Finn M'Cool and his cat....
>This is one story that seems to invite allegorical interpretation with the
>exchange: "Who are they?  Well, one is wickedness, and the other a fairy
>cat."  But while I enjoy this tall tale, I'm hard pressed to find any
>connections with Weer's story or tease out the allegory.

I've pondered this too, and my best guess is that the story is meant as an
allegory of the founding of America. It's connection with the rest of the 
is that America is the subject of the rest of the novel, just as much as Weer

The last line of the story is something to the effect that the pieces the
Cat and the Rat are tearing off each other are running off into the trees,
the implication being (it has always semed to me) that these pieces will
now colonize the new world. Thus America is born out of a mix of magic
and wickedness. This is very much the way America is portrayed in the
novel as a whole.

There is compelling evidence, by the way, that the voyage of St Brendan
really did take place, and that the Irish got to America before even the
Vikings did. Wolfe backs this theory in Castle of the Otter.

*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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