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From: Derek Bell <dbell@maths.tcd.ie>
Subject: Re: (whorl) Orchid's Manteion
Date: Sun, 16 Mar 1997 15:34:01 +0000

[Posted from Whorl, the mailing list for Gene Wolfe's Book of the Long Sun]

In message <199703150509.VAA08876@lists1.best.com>, m.driussi@genie.com writes:
>I think I agree with you, since I've been working on the idea that
>Orchid's "profaned" manteion is actually not so very profaned--that
>it was and is a manteion dedicated to Kypris-the-party-girl, or, as
>you put it (bringing Chicago geography into the picture) the "Playboy

	Really, I didn't know that the Playboy Mansion was near
Chicago! Come to think of it, it makes it look more likely as a joke
that would appeal to Wolfe - he's certainly included Chicago geography
in his works before, as well as some other places he's lived. (I think
I read that Caissonsville in _Peace_ is based on a town he grew up in
- I'm not sure which.) For that matter, Wolfe has used some elaborate
puns in TBoTNS. (E.g. the two puns in the version of the Thesus legend.)

>An argument agin' it: the manteions we see are not so specialized,
>rather they serve all the gods.  Shrines, yes (specialized); manteions,

	It struck me afterwards that the manteion may have been some
kind of haven for Kypris, assuming that she told Silk the truth about
being hunted. Perhaps she made multiple copies of herself and the one
in Orchid's survived because the manteion was in disrepair. Then
again, Mucor turned up shortly before and she seems to have an
"awakening" effect on Sacred Windows. (They're one kind Microsoft has no
hand in! ;-))

	Another thing about Orchid's and the exorcism conducted there:
after Kypris' theophany, Silk remembers that they haven't completed
the "third circuit" of the manteion. I loved that phrase when I reread that
scene last night. It reminds me of the scene where Silk buys Oreb in
the market and Tick says "add word", which reminded me of assembly
language! (OK, I know Tick uses the wrong words all the time, but I'm
sure Gene Wolfe wouldn't pass up the opportunity for a little wordplay.)

>(Hey, wait a second--did you title yours "Thought for the day"
>because today is =Friday=?  Very clever!)

	Because the Friday is (according to Merriam-Webster) 
indirectly derived from _dies_Veneris_? I'm afraid that wasn't my
intention; it seems my pun is cleverer than me!! Or else I was
possessed by a minor god! (I don't remember there being a Whorl god of
puns and wordplay - maybe he's a minor one, possibly demoted for
punning in Pas' presence too often! Perhaps Lupercus is the deity


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