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From: Craig Christensen <2644@mn3.lawson.lawson.com>
Subject: Re: (urth) Digest Urth, or brains thereo
Date: Thu, 16 Jul 1998 08:04:00 

From: "Mark Millman" <Mark_Millman@hmco.com>
Subject: Re: (urth) Digest Urth, or brains thereof
Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998 12:04:38

Rostrum wrote:
> I have to admit some confusion on that point.
> Wouldn't anyone judging the Autarch also
> have to know the words in order to recognize
> them?  Shouldn't any such person be able to
>speak "the words" and pose as the Autarch?

>And Mark Millman replied:
>... For one thing, many of the words command mechanical
>contrivances, so all a putative Autarch would have to do, for
>example, would be to open the door behind the throne...

This was my thinking, too- the Autarch's oldest personalities remember   
how to operate the voice-recognition machinery.  The episode I remembered   
was near the end of CITADEL (Father Inire's Letter) where Severian opens   
the door to the Autarch's quarters with a word.  I scanned this at home   
last night, and I noted a mention of 'words' a little further on, at the   
beginning of his conversation with the homunculus.  The homunculus opens   
by saying (something like) "Why have you interrupted my contemplation of   
your world?" and Severian replies (something like), "I now know this   
world to have seven continents, of which only part of this one honor the   
holy words."

Where I had thought that the use of words was a simple use of old   
technology appearing magical in this age, I think that this last tidbit   
indicates something more.  It seems that the use of 'words' elicits   
control over the populous.  Or maybe just voluntary allegance.

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

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