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From: "Roy C. Lackey" 
Subject: Re: (urth) Typhon vs. Pas
Date: Thu, 7 Nov 2002 14:43:45 -0600

Jerry Friedman wrote:
>You guys are really pushing my buttons.  Let me just remind you that
>many believers (Jews) and many non-believers don't think one "knows"
>that the two Gods are the same, and many perceive the New Testament
>God as harsher than the Old Testament god.  I imagine that Wolfe,
>however, sees it as you describe.

Sorry. It was a common Christian perception I wrote of, not mine. I have no
preference among religions.

Adam Stephanides wrote:
>Whether or not he makes it in his interviews, it is clearly present in the
>books.  Typhon is the ruler of Urth who built the Whorl; Pas is a copy of
>Typhon's personality that was downloaded into a computer.  One could say
>that Pas is Typhon in the sense that Silk-in-Mainframe is Silk; but the
>entity that ordered the Whorl to be built was killed by Severian on Urth.

Yes, and this brings up some interesting questions about exactly when,
where, and how the _Whorl_ came to be built. Sev's second meeting with
Typhon was the first, chronologically. Sev, while still a prisoner on Mt.
Typhon, told his recent converts (his jailers) that, based on what he knew
from his other meeting with Typhon, that Typhon would soon die behind his
curtain. His followers, too afraid to look behind the curtain unbidden,
would wait in vain for orders that would never come; work on the mountain
would come to a halt, and the followers drift away. A thousand years later
Sev would discover the desiccated body and unwittingly revive it.

Typhon, who had his own head cut off to spite his ego, had his head attached
to Piaton's body. It was probably some complication of the surgery, or
Piaton's resistance to having his mind and body subordinated to Typhon's
will, that led to the death of the body behind the curtain. The cranial
graft was to be temporary; when Typhon's nervous system was able to assume
the autonomous functions of the body, Piaton's head was to be removed. That
process was taking longer than expected, but not so long as it would take to
build the _Whorl_. If Sev's prophecy was true, then Typhon had to have
already been scanned into Mainframe and the ship launched; that or those
things happened fairly soon after Sev made the prophecy.

Either way, it's hard to reconcile the NS and LS texts. We know that Marble
and the other servant chems were older than the _Whorl_ itself, and
Hammerstone told Silk that the soldier chems were being stockpiled for
twenty years before coming aboard the ship. A painted canvas cloth at
Orchid's place was "a crude mockery of Campion's celebrated Pas enthroned."
The original showed two-headed Pas, along with a couple of mighty taluses
"still at work upon the whorl".

Now, the hollowing out of an asteroid and all the work needed to turn it
into a giant spaceship, stocking it with flora and fauna, soil, water, etc.,
would have been the work of years. At what point in the construction of the
_Whorl_ did Typhon get his second head? Clearly he had it before the ship
was launched, but did he have it before construction started? That doesn't
seem possible, because Typhon surely didn't have Piaton's body for twenty
years or more; that certainly wasn't his plan.

If Typhon underwent the operation *after* construction started, how did that
affect his original intent in building it? If the _Whorl_ took a long time
to build, as it surely did, were his seven children the product of his
original body or Piaton's?

And how is it that so massive an undertaking as the building, stockpiling,
and launch of the _Whorl_ left no lasting echoes on Urth in Sev's day, just
a thousand years later? Sev and the Commonwealth seem completely ignorant of



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