(urth) The face of Pas

James Wynn crushtv at gmail.com
Tue Sep 14 13:34:13 PDT 2010

>> James Wynn-
>> 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.
> Roy-
> Legal status!? What would an egotistical tyrant care about legal status? Was
> he going to be voted out of office or something?

A tyrant must induce people to obey him. Would anyone obey a robot? 
Mamelta's attitude toward them makes me think the idea would be 
preposterous. Secular tyrants like Stalin and Saddam maintained total 
control even as thet killed and terrorized everyone around them. It's 
almost like magic act. Getting venal people work hard to set up a system 
with you yourself at the top is a subject that has always fanscinated 
historians. Xenophon was not the first.

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

And presumably she was implanted around the same time as Thecla.

>> JW - The point remains that Typhon said he used the method he did for
>> practical reasons. Not egotistical ones.
> Roy - That is your view. It is not mine.

Hmmm...We are talking about what Typhon _says_, right? I'd be curious to 
hear your alternate reading on what Typhon _says_ his reasons were:

"My physicians, of whom I naturally had the best of many worlds,
told me it might be possible for me to take a new body, their first thought
being to enclose my brain in the skull previously occupied by another. 
You see
the flaw in that?"[snip] The face would be lost, and it is the face that 
men are
accustomed to obey!"

I gather two relevant points here 1) Implanting his brain in a young 
body was an option for his doctors. 2)Typhon felt he had to keep his 
face because it was the face his subjects had grown "accustomed to obey".

>> 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.

You need to read that text a little more carefully, Roy. What Remora 
says is:

"The Charter, eh? Written in-ah-deity by Scylla and corrected by Pas. So 

Even Remora, retains skepticism regarding what the Charter says 
regarding its own history.
But even then, what Remora and Lemur think about the founding of the 
Whorl should be taken with the same degree of skepticism: "So he 
asserts". And that's the way Wolfe wrote it.


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