(urth) Two tombs

Roy C. Lackey rclackey at stic.net
Thu Jul 6 00:26:59 PDT 2006

Andrew wrote:
>I've tried to make up stories about who the other coffins in Sev's
>tomb might belong to, but I can't find anything to go on. And why
>*two* open?

The clues about the mausoleum are few and scattered. The image of the man on
the funeral bronze (we don't even know which coffin, if any, it may have
been associated with) was said by Severian to look just as he looked at the
time he was resurrected in Apu's tomb. By my calculations, Sev should have
been about seventy years old at the time he was strangled as Apu. The
logical implication is that Sev died not long after returning to Ushas and
writing URTH; that or some cognate of himself who was that same age died
somewhen in time and the body placed in the mausoleum by someone unknown, at
an unknown time.

One bit of information comes from when Sev placed the skull before the
closed door of the drowned mausoleum. (URTH, 335) He said that the flood had
closed the long-jammed door, "having completed a motion begun perhaps a
century ago." That implies that someone was messing around in the mausoleum
something like thirty years before he was born. I assume that a body (or
two) was removed. Who did it and why? But what I would really like to know
is, *where are the bodies*?

It is possible that each of the five coffins at one time held the body of
the same man -- Severian, from one or another of his incarnations. He was
forever getting himself killed.


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