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From: "Robert Borski" 
Subject: (urth) Thoughts on Undines, and other ramblings
Date: Wed, 19 Jun 2002 12:25:01 -0500

Jeff Wilson quoting me first, then appending:

"For starters the names "Juturna" and "Idas" derive from classical
mythology,  and if we adhere to Wolfe's rule of names--a rule I believe to
be inviolable--such beings are aliens. Contrast this with "Baldanders,"
which comes to us from Borges via Grimelshausen--quite another kettle of
fish in my opinion."

"This would make Typhon an alien. While he =is= a tyrant from another star,
he should be human as he is descended from emigrants of Urth stock."

But again, unless you're willing to attribute this to nomenclatural
sloppiness on the part of GW, the name "Typhon" _does_ indicate he is an
alien. After all, aliens do not travel to Urth, decide they need an
Urth-friendly name, and then consult a book on mythology as opposed to a
book of saints. Similarly for new parents of a human child; they do not know
their own names derive from saintly exemplars. This is because the
saint/human-mythic/alien naming stratagem is an order imposed from without,
by the author. Either you believe it's fast and true, or you don't; if the
latter, then there's not much point in arguing further since we both
disagree about the convention. If the former, however, we must further
account for several possible contradictions; Typhon bears an alien name, for
example, as does Ossipago (seemingly an automaton) and Ceryx (who comes
across as more human than alien); then there's Palaemon and Paeon, both of
whom have saintly _and_ mythic exemplars. But how can they be both saints
and aliens? Resolving these contradictons, in my opinion, is very important
to a true understanding of tbotNS--as I've indicated before in a number of
published essays (for which see further gloss).

What _I_ call the nested names rule is equally important: i.e., where a
second name is, if not entirely, derivable from a parent name, requiring
_only the addition of a single letter_--such interrelatedness being Wolfe's
way of conferring the two are somehow related, either literally or
figuratively (or in some cases making both individuals the same person).

Mindful of Buck Mulligan's comment about Stephen Dedalus' theory about
Hamlet ("He proves by algebra that Hamlet's grandson is Shakespeare's
grandfather and that he himself is the ghost of his own father"), I will not
subject you to my various interpretations of how one individual is related
to another, but I will append my list of nested names. If you know of any
others, please feel free to add to it--I doubt the list is exhaustive.

1. Severian/Severa

2. Severian/Inire

3. Severian/Agia  (+g)

4. Agilus/Agia

5. Thecla/Thea

6. Camoena/Cumaean  (+u)

7. Katharine/Catherine (+c)

8. Catherine/Carina

9. Palaemon/Paeon

10. Burgundofara/Gunnie  (+ie) [The lone exception to the one letter
addition, but hardly arguable.]

11. Peryton/Purn   (+u)

12. Tzadkiel/Zak

13. Domnicellae/Domnina

14. Nicarete/Thea  (+h)

15. Pelagia/Agia

16. Baldanders/Idas  (+i)

17. Famulimus/famula  [famula=Merryn]

18. Cyriaca/Cyby  (+b)

19. Dorcas/Casdoe  (+e)

20. Piaton/Pia

21. Melito/Miles   (+s)

22. peryton/pteriope  (+i)

23. Meschiane/Meschia

Robert Borski (also known as rik stroeb--at least in various usenet circles)


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