(urth) Cumaeans

John Watkins john.watkins04 at gmail.com
Fri Feb 6 10:04:49 PST 2009

On Fri, Feb 6, 2009 at 12:53 PM, b sharp <bsharporflat at hotmail.com> wrote:

> I am of the view that Father Inire, as an ancient god of the arts
> (Apollo)/alien analog,
> appears in various guises throughout the story, mostly as monkeys or
> monkey-like and/or
> artsy human characters such as Fechin, Isangoma, the boatman, the cowled
> cenobite, the masked
> jungle guide and perhaps Rudesind.
> If the Cumaean is Inire's fellow analog, ancient god of medicine/alien I
> expect her also to have
> an animal alter ego and to appear in other guises. Aside from an incidental
> snake here and there,
> her most likely alter egos would be the old leech/pedophile and Ceryx as
> they are all obsessed with
> raising the dead. Her attraction to young men could be a parallel to
> Inire's obsession with young
> women. (so many greek gods seemed to share the same sort of pedophilia)
> Moreover the mythical Cumaean Sybil had requested long life (1000 years)
> from Apollo in exchange for
> her virginity (when she reneged on the deal, he let her live but shrivel).
> Apollo is, of course, also
> associated with prophesy. Also, Ceryx means "herald" and the Cumaean Sybil
> was known as an early
> herald of Christ.

Virgil's Fourth Eclogue, which contains the Sybil's supposed prophesy of
Christ, also praises Apollo.  Severian has as much Apollo imagery around him
as Christ imagery, so the reference may have been especially tempting.

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