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From: Dan Rabin <email-reply@danrabin.com>
Subject: (urth) "Triskele" is unrelated to "Triste"
Date: Thu, 11 Jan 2001 06:27:50 

It is more likely that "Triskele" is used in the sense of a design in 
the form of three running legs (or stylizings thereof) arranged at 
120-degree angles with the "hip" being the center of a circle. 
Merriam-Webster online gives the term as a variant of "Triskelion". 
Triskele has three legs (and a stump, but perhaps

Such a design serves as the symbol of the Isle of Man see 
<http://www.crwflags.com/fotw/flags/im.html>.  It would not be 
un-Wolfean for "Isle of Man" to have some bearing on the choice of 
the name for the dog.  (Hmmm--isolation of Man???)  BUT (!!!) the web 
page mentioned says, "According to Norse mythology, the triskelion 
was a symbol of the movement of the sun through the heavens".

I was all set to crow at this find just now, but I calmed down enough 
to check _Lexicon Urthus_, in which mantis cites John Clute giving an 
Apollonian connection for the symbol.  Darn.

So Severian's healing of Triskele symbolically brings the New Sun, or 
the New Sun symbolically arises at his touch, or (if we admit what we 
learn in _Urth of the New Sun_) the New Sun gives a symbolic token of 
his coming to the young Severian, which token also sort-of leads him 
to the Atrium of Time, and also makes the structure sort of cyclic 
(just like the sun, and like Divine Years), and...

Someone else please pick this up and run with it--my head hurts, and 
I have to save it for _Return to the Whorl_ :-).

It would also be non-un-Wolfean for the dog character to have been 
*derived* from the symbolic connection.

   -- Dan Rabin

P.S. The "-skele" element also occurs in "isosceles".

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

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