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From: m.driussi@genie.com
Subject: (urth) 1000 Pardons
Date: Sun, 12 Jul 98 22:20:00 GMT


A thousand pardons!  I was confused.

Your initial post of 9 Jul is entirely focused on how Valeria
couldn't be regent and how Severian has abdicated.  There is no
positive model asserted, just a negation of the existing model.

Or so it seemed to me--and raster, too, I think, since his 9 Jul post
says that he agrees with you but for different reasons, since he
believes that Inire was selected as regent.

Your post on 11 Jul again focuses on the term regent, stressing that
there is no regent, neither Valeria, nor Inire, nor anybody else.
Thus arguing strenously against raster as well!  But then the part I
missed, written almost, it seems, as an afterthought, that Inire is
Severian's chosen "successor."  (Which of course is quite an
objectionable term, since it is used in the text passages we've been
quoting to designate genuine Autarchs.)

That is to say, you =agree= with raster, but with qualifications!
(And I thought you disagreed entirely: no regents and no Inire.)

Now in your recent post all is made clear: Inire under whatever
title, followed by Valeria.  Hooray!

The funny thing is: you are as adamantly opposed to the apparantly
flippant use of the term "regent" as I am about the flippant use of
the term "autarch" (divorcing title from Multiversal Mandate; hence
"pseudo-autarch," since Valeria cannot be genuine autarch)!


Back to the Test and Severian being permitted to reclaim the Phoenix

As I understand it:

The autarchy was created/recognized by Yesod.  Yesod has the ability
to lift the curse on the Old Sun, but Yesod will only do so when an
autarch has passed the Test.  Autarchs can choose to take the Test or

Three autarchs took the Test: Ymar, Appian, and Severian.

So whatever caretaker government setup there is, (regency,
stewardship, Inirearchy [oh dear, that would be "Patriarchy,"
wouldn't it?], etc.), it (presumably) exists as a precedent and was
(presumably) exercised for Ymar (in legendary times) and Appian (in
[human] living memory).

The prize of success is the New Sun.  The penalty for failure is a
loss of ability to procreate (and by slight extrapolation, the loss
of ability to establish a bloodline dynasty; presumably those
autarchs who chose to avoid the Test, the vast majority of autarchs,
then each tested their own ability to found a dynasty, with varying
degrees of success).  Losing the throne oneself would not appear to
be an option, unless it is a hidden consequence of the unknown
conditions following "success" at the test (since nobody has
succeeded before).  (If you can find additional pointers towards
"abdication of autarchs taking the Test" and/or "success at the Test
means you lose the throne which you've already abdicated anyway," I'd
be most interested in seeing them.)

Ymar lost, but (presumably) returned to the Throne.  Appian lost, but
(definitely) returned to the Throne.

Please note: I am not denying the Severian quote, I am not even
openly questioning the context you have attributed to it, I am only
explaning the background of the Test's system of rewards and
punishments as I understand it.


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

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