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From: "William H. Ansley" <wansley@warwick.net>
Subject: Re: (urth) Re: edh and thorn [Digest urth.v024.n024]
Date: Thu, 1 Apr 1999 00:03:34 

>Dragging this back to Wolfe by main force, I note that we have
>evidence that Severian's alphabet is like ours: at one point we
>are told that "s" looks like a snake and "t" like a cross.  Are
>there any other hints?
>	-John Bishop, letting his long-ago linguistics degree
>                      take over for a minute or two.

This may not be reliable evidence of the letter shapes at all. Since Wolfe
"translated" TBotNS from a strange future tongue he probably had to make an
adjustment in this passage. For all we know the last two letters in the
actual word Severian used (which Wolfe translated as 'last') looked
entirely different. We could have had a hoop and a cup rather than a
serpent and a sword, just to pick two more objects at random that can
conceivably be thought to look like other letters in our alphabet. Which
letters? I'll leave that as an exercise for you.

William Ansley

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

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