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) --