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Date: Mon, 20 May 2002 15:24:25 -0700 (PDT)
From: Jerry Friedman 
Subject: Re: (urth) Azoth color

--- Ashley Crill  wrote:
> I recently read a post in the Urth archives concerning the color of the
> gem in Hyacinth's azoth:
> >The weird thing is that the jewel in the hilt has changed colors from
> its 
> >original description in Nightside the Long Sun.  I can't remember the
> color 
> >right now, but I know I was suprised because it wasn't purple (I was
> reading 
> >it out loud to my mother a few weeks ago right after reading the
> description 
> >of the azoth in Return to the Whorl on my own; she has the book now) I
> think 
> >it was blue or blue-green.  Has anybody noticed if the jewel in the
> hilt 
> >changes throughout the Long Sun series?
>  There are two gems on the azoth. One is set directly underneath the
> guard,  and is a red, unfaceted bloodstone.

Incidentally, Wolfe may have made up this sense of "bloodstone"
(though I wouldn't be surprised if you could find it in earlier
pulpish sf).  The only definition at
 is "a green chalcedony
sprinkled with red spots resembling blood -- called also _heliotrope_"

> The second gem is set in the
> pommel, and appears to be clear. When it catches the light, however, it
> becomes colored. In Nightside p. 304, Silk notices that the pommel gem
> catches a ray of sunlight and "flashed a watery green" color. In Return
> p. 321, Silk/Horn notices that the pommel gem appears to be a "watery,
> somewhat purplish stone". I'm guessing that the color of the pommel gem
> changes according to the light, while the bloodstone that activates the
> beam is always red.

Good catch!

Jerry Friedman

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