(urth) Urth, Verthandi, Sculd‏

Lee Berman severiansola at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 11 11:52:34 PDT 2013

>Sergei Soloviev: I don't remember whether it was discussed that the names of the planets 
>in the BotNS - Urth, Verthandi, Sculd - correspond to the names of Norns in Nordic mythology - 
>(Urth or Urd was the Norn of the past)

It has been discussed through the years at certain points. The text itself hints at it by 
noting an ancient language (english of course) in which the word "present", represented by 
Verthandi, is used to represent both the concepts of "now" and "gift" .

I find it an example of Wolfe's rather incredible ability to use clever word play to be textually
significant at multiple levels. By invoking the Norns he represents the theme of time and the cold 
and mythological nature of Urth. Using "Urth" invokes our earth but this becomes a subtle way
of telling us that this planet which appears to be our own future is actually part of our 
universal past.

(Not that I was able to discern this on my own, but Wolfe apparently was willing to acknowlege
he made that puzzle too difficult and he identifies the cosmically "past" nature of Urth openly in 

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