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From: Robert Patterson <rpatters@midsouth.rr.com>
Subject: (whorl) New/Long Sun; Derivation of "talus"
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 1999 23:19:08 

I searched the archives and also for a FAQ, but I cannot find any
discussion of direct links between New Sun & Long Sun. Has anyone proved
that they are from the same universe? Or do we simply take it on faith
because Amazon says so? (I worry that this is a bone-crushingly stupid
question, but I can't remember any obvious connections.)

I noticed in the archives a discussion of the derivation of some of the
Long Sun words. The one I saw for "talus" failed to give the most
important  reference. Talus was a demigod character in Spencer's "The
Fairie Queen" who accompanied one of the knights on many of his
adventures. He was invincibly strong, fairly stupid, and rather
unpleasant for a "good" guy. His whole purpose was to implement justice
untempered by mercy or extenuating circumstances. In one scene he
slaughtered an entire town for a minor infraction. He was similar to
Long Sun taluses in many important ways, and I am certain that is where
Wolfe got the name.

I would quote chapter and verse, but the copy of Spencer that I read is
at my local library. I hearitly recommend Spencer. You can get the hang
of the verse and the Elizabethan English within a few pages. Spencer's
account of St. George's battle with the dragon is as vivid a dragon
slaying as I've ever read. (Another great dragon slaying is of course
the one in Tolkien's "The Unfinished Tales." However, Turin killed
Glaurung in an afternnoon. St. George required several days of
continuous fighting.) Anyway, I would not be surprised if Spencer is the
source of other Wolfe references that I missed.

BTW, as I recall, the Talus character doesn't show up until about
halfway through "The Fairie Queen." I remember what an epiphany it was
for me. At the time I had already read Nightside. I had (as we all
probably have) looked up that "talus" word in my dictionary and been
very puzzled and frustrated by the definition therein. When I
encountered Talus in FQ, it was a wonderful revelation.


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