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From: Derek Bell <dbell@maths.tcd.ie>
Subject: Re: (whorl) Typhon & Pas
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 18:04:23 +0000

[Posted from Whorl, the mailing list for Gene Wolfe's Book of the Long Sun]

In message <199701221842.KAA12107@lists1.best.com>, Ranjit Bhatnagar writes:
>I agree that the time scales don't seem to match up, though.
>Pas's time is close enough to our own time that French is
>still in use.  Heck, I can't even figure out how they could
>be consistent within the Book of the New Sun alone.

	IIRC, Wolfe used languages such as Latin and Old French in the
Book of the New Sun to represent languages that bear the same
relationship to Severian's language as the ones used in the text do to
English. Perhaps French is used to represent a contemporary (to Silk)

	Latin is once mentioned by Silk as an example of a
language that might survive in another city as the native tongue;
again this is probably used in place of what, to Silk, would be a dead
language that is still known of.

	I see that Pas didn't just divide cities by physical barriers
- it looks like he deliberately created linguistic, if not cultural,
barriers too. (Damn clever, these two-headed dictators! :-)) The
Trivigauntis are shown as speaking something that sounds like Arabic,
which is a totally different family of language to English.)


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