(urth) Literal or metaphor?

Gerry Quinn gerry at bindweed.com
Mon Apr 15 02:42:11 PDT 2013

From: Lee Berman

> It was a number of years ago. But IIRC, the debate started when someone
> else speculated that the name of a certain character, (maybe Patera Bull
> or even Bison?) was suggestive of him being related to Horn. I think it
> was Roy's general contention that Vironese names were picked (by Wolfe)
> at random and any connections between them were personal inventions and
> shouldn't be to be used to find extra-curricular meaning. I remember 
> asking
> Roy if he might concede that if not bovine then ungulate connections tied
> the male names of Horn's family together, but he never responded. That may
> have marked the end of Roy's participation on this board. A shame, but
> understandable.

If that was the reason I would not find it understandable, and so I assume 
there must have been some other reason.  Even if one doubts the ungulate[*] 
connection (which I would find difficult) one cannot dispute that Wolfe 
picked the names with a view to alliteration at least.  And given that 
alliteration reduces the space of possibilities, the chance of an accidental 
ungulate connection is reduced.

[*] Maybe ungulate isn't quite right, though.  Horn, Hide and Hoof might be 
thought of as epidermal by-products of large domesticated grass-eaters. 
Either way, it's natural to link them.

- Gerry Quinn

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