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From: Dan Parmenter <dan@lec.com>
Subject: (urth) Perelandra and Sevegetarianism
Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 15:33:03 

From: Peter Westlake <peter@harlequin.co.uk>

>All this underground stuff is quite evocative of Tolkien, and the
>underground parts of _Perelandra_, with its sense of inaccessible
>depths briefly glimpsed. The air striders reminded me a little of
>the spinning wheels in _Perelandra_ too.

I've been thinking of some other Perelandra parallels too.
Specifically, I've noticed that in URTH, when Severian returns from
Yesod he seems reluctant to eat meat.  At one of the inns he is
described as pushing the meat around rather than eating it (no
citation, sorry) and he seems to mention preferring to eat fruit
several times.  I believe there's also the post-Typon sequence in the
mountains when he's hanging out with the smilodon, munching on fruit.
This isn't ironclad, but I can't help but see a parallel to Ransom's
return from Perelandra, after which he eschews all but the most basic
of human food.  And of course by THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH Ransom is being
attended by dancing bears and mice that clean up the crumbs from his
food, which is itself a parallel to Severian's seeming ability to
gentle animals (the Smilodon, but also the bull at the end of CLAW)
which I suppose is just part and parcel of his growing righteousness.

I'm inclined to think that in both cases perhaps there's some element
of the "fairy cake" concept, after eating the food of Yesod or
Perelandra, human food seems tasteless.

And let us not forget that Master Ash seemed to be a non meat-eater,
which Severian noted.  Interesting that neither Master Ash nor the
Green Man eat meat (obviously for quite different reasons).

Re: manskin, doeskin, etc.

I was sort of obsessed by this for a while myself, particularly wrt
the Claw's sack.  And a few months ago, here on the list, I brought up
the inconsistencies in Severian's descriptions of the old Autarch's
robes.  Usually they are referred to as yellow, but in citadel they
are saffron (check the archives for the specifics).  We discussed the
significance of saffron robes in general but this discrepancy was
still never really explained to my satisfaction.  At one point I was
convinced that the inconsistencies were due to parallel universes that
happened to share some of the same reality space, but now that I have
a better understanding of the "sliver Severians" concept I'm less sure
about that.


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

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