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From: "Robert Borski" <rborski@coredcs.com>
Subject: (urth) Re: Navigator
Date: Wed, 9 Jun 1999 02:48:45 

> Item 10: the little girl mentions "the navigator" in conversation with
> Severian.
> Comment: this is the first indication that at least some ancestors of the
> generational prisoners might have been the crew of a starship.  The girl
> talking to Severian, not Jonas.  We aren't sure of the kin-group of the
> girl--she might or might not be a member of the same group that was
> to Jonas.


While I understand how you may have arrived at this conclusion, I think it
raises more questions than it answers (as opposed to my own navigator = JFK
theory). And while alternate theories are always welcome, I believe each
must somehow address the following:

1) How are the survivors of a crash, whether the ship is Tzadkiel's
starship or a tender from the same, able to organize a funeral, complete
with black wagons? Especially when it appears they will be subject to
arrest very soon?

2) Why do the "burying people" (possibly posthistoric morticians or their
equivalent--but again how are the survivors of the crash able to engage
these?) wear black? While a custom in our times (and hence my belief that
Oringa is talking about the members of the funeral procession, not strictly
morticians), Severian tells us wearing black to a funeral slanders the
deceased because of its association with his guild. 

3) What if anything are we to make of Oringa's statement about "people in
black clothes walking"?
(As if walking behind a black funeral wagon is somehow out of the
ordinary--although as I've stated before most accounts of JFK's funeral
make mention of how the widow Kennedy refused to ride in a car to St.
Matthew's Cathedral and hence walked behind the horse-drawn caisson bearing
her dead husband.)

Also: you might want to consider one additional datapoint, Item 0.2
perhaps, where Jonas continues the tale he began at the Piteous Gate
(CHAPTER VIII, CLAW). It again suggests Jonas has access to information
outside the ordinary ken--at least for someone born during Severian's time.

Hey, I like the launch-silo theory! Especially since Sev seems to see
radiation biohazard icons.

Robert Borski 

*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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