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From: Michael Andre-Driussi <mantis@sirius.com>
Subject: Re: (urth) _Peace_: Another solid date
Date: Mon, 20 Nov 2000 19:25:47 

Hey vizcacha!

>Emil Ludwig's biography of Napoleon was published in 1926, and when Weer was
>13 he had read it "a year or two ago".  So, if that means he was 11 or 12,
>he could not possibly have been born before 1914.  (_Peace_, p. 2)
>The biography was a best-seller in 1926 or 1927, so that is a very likely
>time for Olivia (or Julius, if was in the library for a while) to have
>purchased it.
>Like most bright kids, Weer probably scavenged in the available bookshelves,
>so we don't have a latest possible date for his birth, but this definitely
>gives the earliest.

Very nice!  I mean, I agree with the argument re: 1914, and the dates all
match up--but the angle I find even more exciting is the fact that we have
determined that Olivia dies in 1928, and here is a snapshot from 1927 (it
must be, since he is living with the Smarts; his parents haven't come back
yet), in the midst of big changes (Olivia married; Olivia growing large;
Olivia committing adulteries, repenting, committing them again) on the cusp
of big changes (parents will return; Den will live with them again; Olivia
will die).

Julius (un-named) has given her a Napoleon of china.  Wow, that seems, er,
pregnant with portent, in a book which gets so crazy about porcelain.  In
fact I wonder if it comes next in the sequence: olive pit in china hen;
Chinese Egg;  . . . china emperor?

"someone else saying no, the president is a little man . . . " (152), like


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