Tuesday, 30 October 2012

...And Gradlon

This is the sort of detail that is noticed only if looked for. The legendary King of Ys was called either Grallon or Gradlon. In Poul and Karen Anderson's The King Of Ys tetralogy, the Romano-British Centurion Gaius Valerius Gratillonius comes to Ys and becomes that King. Through several stages, the Andersons show us how the Ysans, finding Latin pronunciation difficult, gradually shortened his name to "Grallon."

" '...you, Grallon, fear about you.' She seldom gave him his proper name any more but, like an increasing number of Ysans and Osismii, softened it.' " (Gallicenae (London, 1988), p. 39).

But they incorporate "Gradlon" also. A drunken brigand negotiating with Gratillonius says, "'You're a good fellow, Gra- Gra- Gradlon.'" (p. 59)

That brigand will be important later.

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