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From: "James Wynn" 
Subject: Re: (urth) Silkhorn's memory; Sev's book
Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 03:05:37 -0600

Roy corrects:
 Recent discussion has asserted that Horn or Silk--or Silkhorn--had a
perfect memory, like Severian's. No such claim is made in either the LS or
SS books.

Crush pipes up:
That is certainly true, and I'm glad you pointed that out, because I, who
launched that branch of the recent discussion, certainly never claimed Horn
said that.

What I DID say was: "Horn makes a _similar_ claim  [to Severian's] that he
does not believe he has 'forgotten anything' that he and Nettle wrote in the
Book of Silk."

The reference is on page 43 of my hardcover copy of "On Blue Waters". It is
near the end of chapter one when he discusses the things he brought with him
on the boat:

"A copy of our book, which I meant to read during calms and the like, not so
much to relearn the facts we had set down as to gently persuade my memory to
dwell upon our conversations, and the conversations I had with Nettle, Moly,
and others about him. You that read will not credit it, but I do not believe
I have forgotten anything that Nettle and I put into our book, or that I
ever will."

I have loaned out my copy of tSotT but I am pretty sure this is a close
parallel to something Severian said; basically, that he suspected readers
would doubt it, but he had perfect recall. While Horn limits his perfect
memory to events in his book, the parallel is there, and to my eye certainly
deliberate, and BECAUSE of its limitedness, even striking. It is the sort of
boast that forces one to wonder why it is being made. It seems obvious to me
that some sort of very close connection is being implied here between these
two characters although I cannot say right now what it is.

For that matter, since all of Severian's "life" is, for all intents and
purposes, _in his pair of books_ (because he is after all a literary
character) perhaps the difference is not even _that_ stretched.

-- Crush


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