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From: "Steve Strickland" 
Subject: Re: (urth) Re: The irrigation of Lune
Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2002 00:59:39 -0600

Is the scene with Rudesind, the only one in BOTNS in which the irrigation of
Lune is discussed?

I'd always assumed--I'll admit without much thought on the subject-- that
the discussion of the "irrigation of Lune" in the early part of TSOTT was
sort of an oblique reference to the sun's weakening.  Since the light of the
moon is a reflection of the sun's light, the pale green light of the moon
would have given way, I suppose, to a darker green, as the sun began to
weaken.  This historical fact, that over time the moon changed from pale
green to darker green, became, in the folklore of a civilization whose
science was declining, the afforestation of the moon, which of course would
require water to make it work.

This also seems to me to be consistent with Mr. Wolfe's interest in folklore
as being derivative of some truth or half-truth (in this case, that the moon
had darkened required explanation).

Of course, it is also possible that through some advanced technology the
moon had actually been made into a forest.  Are there other references in
TBOTNS to the irrigation of Lune, or its forests, that might shed more light
on whether this is merely a matter of folklore arising from the weakening
sun, vs. a fact of science?

Steve Strickland

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, March 06, 2002 5:17 AM
Subject: Re: (urth) Re: The irrigation of Lune

> On 02/03/2002 06:37:36 Jeff Wilson wrote:
> >> From: "Andy Robertson" 
> >Rudesind and others of his society can't be expected to be cognizant of
> >what else besides mere irrigation would be required to cover the moon
> >with forest. After whatever other modifications it would take to keep an
> >atmosphere in place, yes it would have to be irrigated. And while it
> >does not sound like something of ineffable, recall that Father Inire's
> >Gardens allow a confluence of Gyoll and the Lake of Birds; for all we
> >know he diverted a tributary of the Brook Madregot to water Green/Lune.
> >
> >In addition, this sort of sweeping up and piling of asteroids would
> >relieve the metal scarcity problem supposedly caused by all the ships
> >and ordnance leaving Urth, never or seldom to return.
> Out of curiosity does anyone have near to hand an estimate of the mass of
> the solar system, what proportion of that would be in the small bodies and
> what proportion of those metals?
> Following the thought logically, rather than with literary intent, mining
> / collecting metals in near space would seem an obvious move once space
> flight was available.  It doesn't seem unreasonable to assume that this
> had been done.
> Hence my curiosity about quantity because that and usage rates might
> suggest timescales.
> Matthew
> --


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