(urth) The face of Pas

Roy C. Lackey rclackey at stic.net
Tue Sep 14 12:12:01 PDT 2010

James Wynn wrote:
> There are downsides to chem bodies as the Ayuntamiento discovered. Being
> downloaded into a chem body might reasonably give Typhon no more actual
> legal status than uploading his personality into a computer.

Legal status!? What would an egotistical tyrant care about legal status? Was
he going to be voted out of office or something?

> There is no
> evidence of fast-grown clones being an available option in any of the
> novels.

Thecla was just a few years older than Severian, yet her fully-grown khaibit
was working in a whore house. Lest anyone misunderstand, I do not subscribe
to clone theories in LS/SS. Not at all. I'm just pointing out a fact in NS.

> The point remains that Typhon said he used the method he did for
> practical reasons. Not egotistical ones.

That is your view. It is not mine.

> The *idea* of Typhon and his family could not be expunged. It is
> unlikely that any people on Urth thought of him as a two-headed being.
> He could not have been in that form long before he died.

I agree with that much.

> The child Cilinia could not have designed all the traditions of the
> Chapter. No way. Typhon's committees did that on an ad hoc basis-- the
> same way they put together the Writings. When Lemur say she "founded"
> the Chapter and Viron and other cities, he is talking about a titular
> role--with little more input than a suggestion here and there. That's
> why Lemur stipulates that she was little more than a child.

Regardless of who designed the traditions of Viron, the fact remains that
the city, complete with its scores of manteions, was already built when the
first people came aboard -- Marble was there at that time and said so; she
was working as a maid at the Sun Street manteion. The Sacred Windows were up
and running with Viron's Chapter in charge of daily operations in the
manteions. And like it or not, the city's Charter was said to have been
written by Scylla: "The Charter, eh? Written in-ah-deity by Scylla and
corrected by Pas." (LAKE, chap. 7, 188) Thus, her role in the founding of
Viron and its institutions was not just titular.That she was a girl of about
thirteen at the time she was scanned is not my problem to explain; that's
the way Wolfe wrote it.


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