(urth) Hierodules and time

thalassocrat at nym.hush.com thalassocrat at nym.hush.com
Fri May 26 07:05:17 PDT 2006

On Fri, 26 May 2006 23:43:40 +1000 b sharp 
<bsharporflat at hotmail.com> wrote:
>Thalassocrat, sorry I should have been more clear!  If the 
>knowledge of the 
>play at Baldanders' castle is not a Wolfe mistake then seems to be 

>Ossipago in that capacity ("he has a memory like yours").  Q. How 
>do they 
>know?   A. Ossipago told them.

But when F says "Only O here has memory like yrs", I think it's 
clear she means like Sev's, who had just said, "I remember 
everything vey well, as you had better know at once". O's a 
machine, so he remembers stuff well; there's nothing in the 
passage, or elsewhere AFAIK, to suggest he has a special time-
fixing role.

>Hence the deus ex machina reference (and thanks for finding it!).  

>Gosh, who 
>could be more of a God and a Machine than hierodule/robot 
>Ossipago? He fits 
>the phrase (defined below) almost perfectly and I suspect Wolfe 
>had this in 
>mind as he wrote.

But O doesn't get introduced "suddenly". I'm sure the term really 
refers to the equivalent of suddenly dropping a god into the play 
to put the brakes on the otherwise-inevitable denouement. It's "god 
from a machine (ie, a crane)" not "god and machine", of course, and 
anyway O isn't a god or at all god-like. 

Not that it matters; it's a tiny issue, I confess, but time travel 
always annoys me. And I can't help feeling that Wolfe has something 
devious going on here, and that I'm missing it completely, which is 
irritating <g>.

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