(urth) Agilus and Agia

aaron aaronsingleton at gmail.com
Thu May 2 07:05:20 PDT 2013

Never considered that Hethor and Father Inire might in some way be
related.  It seems so obvious now that you mention it.  Oh, to D.S.-
Wolfe's response was in answer to the question of Father Inire's on- stage
appearance in the Book.  I never doubted the character's  existence, but
his non-appearance is something that has intrigued me for some time.

On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 8:07 AM, Lee Berman <severiansola at hotmail.com> wrote:

> >David Stockhoff: The wearing of masks points to the warlocks. I don't
> think the
> >ribbons need to be painted on.
> I think it must have been Borski who suggested the ribbons were painted
> on. But if
> the mask itself ties Agilus to the Jungle Sorcerers I don't have much of
> an opinion
> either way. Agia's use of the "athame", the warlock's blade, also fits
> into this
> connection. So after Agilus' death, Agia replaces one warlock with
> another, Hethor.
> (just learned that the athame is the sword which is represented in the
> four suits of
> tarot cards- wands, cups and pentacles being the other three. Interesting.)
> >aaron: I still can't shake the relation to the masks of the Hierodules.
> Given the demonic connection we get for Agilus and Agia, I think the
> relationship of
> these sets of masks is quite apt. There is some veiled recognition in
> UotNS that Biblical
> angels are the same sort of beings as demons, except that the latter are
> fallen. There
> will always be some connections between the two.
> So if the servants of the angels wear masks on Urth, we may expect the
> servants of
> demons, like Agilus and the Jungle Sorcerers, to do likewise in symmetry.
> (of course
> Severian also wears a mask when performing his guild's work....)
> >I even asked Wolfe about Inire's appearances (or lack of) in TBotNS, and
> he basically
> >just said "Maybe he's there, maybe he's not."
> D.S.: Schrodinger's vizier? Now I'll have to lie awake considering the
> ramifications of
> Father Inire's potential nonexistence . . .
> Heh! Well, Inire does write Severian a letter and he appears in the
> stories of several
> other characters so I think his non-existence isn't a well supported
> theory.
> In my opinion, Father Inire's appearances are a mystery along the same
> lines as identifying
> Severian's family. There are a few very strong, highly likely examples.
> Then there some
> moderately strong examples which are a bit harder to spot. Finally, there
> are a handful of
> possible but very tenuously evidenced examples. I think Wolfe wrote these
> mysteries
> deliberately that way and it is accurate, even for him, to say "maybe,
> maybe not" for the
> final group.
> FWIW, I think the strongest examples of family members are Dorcas and Ouen
> while the strongest
> Inire appearances are the cowled servitor in House Absolute and the masked
> jungle guide. Some
> moderately supported family members are Catherine, Cyriaca and Agia/Agilus
> while some moderately
> supported Inire appearances are Isangoma, the old boatman and the baboon
> who checks in on Severian
> after avern wound. (I'm tempted to include Hethor also because the
> mirror/monster and young girl
> attaction are such compelling connections to Inire for me. But not for
> many others, I think)
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Aaron Singleton
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