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From: "Alice Turner" <al@interport.net>
Subject: (whorl) Sphigx, etc.
Date: Tue, 25 Feb 1997 13:32:16 

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

Heh, heh. I hate There Are Doors too, Patrick.

Kipling's Jungle Book is one of the right-out-front sources for the Brown
Book in NS, but I can't see much of a connection to LS, and I know (or used
to know) my Kipling pretty well. The story mantis mentions is, I think "The
City of Endless Night" (not at home to check). "Baa, Baa Black Sheep" is, I
understand, bleakly autobiographical. It's a fine, wrenching, realistic
story, but how does it relate to Wolfe's work?

> How do you square this with the claim by the Trivigauntis that they talk
> to Sphigx all the time?  I get a little worried when _everything_ isn't
> what it seems.  I think only Viron has had its gods turned off.

Dave, they talk to her, but she doesn't talk back. Sort of like Owen
Glendower summoning spirits from the vasty deep in Henry IV. I think the
gods were turned off everywhere till Mamelta turned Echidna, Scylla and
Tartaros back on. 'Cept for cunning Kypris, who hid. And Pas, who is dead.

Nice rundown, Henry, with especially good observations on Oreb.

I remember that Heinlein two-headed character, Joe-Jim or something like
that---he played chess with himself. He wasn't a tyrant...but your title is
too good to resist!

> 	[Kypris] and Tartaros worked fulfill the Plan of Pas
> 	by getting a lander launched from Viron.  Why Viron?
> 	Because it's a godless (in both senses) city -- no 
> 	theophanies for 30 years.
> That's great!  Finally an answer for "Why Viron?"
> But if Quetzal wasn't primarily responsible for this
> shortage of gods in Viron, um, who was? 

Er, um, I don't think this argument will wash. The only other city we
actually know of, Trivigaunte, doesn't get theophanies either. And, judging
from the Fliers' responses, the Trivs are operating under a surprising (to
the Fliers) feminist heresy by chucking out the other gods. I think Pas &
Co. were originally programmed to be the gods of the whole Whorl. And that
Trivigaunte gets away with it precisely because the gods have been
deactivated for more than a generation.


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