Thursday, 29 January 2015

Khroman And Corun

OK. I have started to read "Witch of the Demon Seas" in the Poul Anderson's Planet Stories ebook. "A novel of alien sorcery..." Does "alien" mean that the story will turn out to be set on another planet? So far, it looks like Earth in a fictitious prehistoric past.

It begins:

"Khroman the conqueror, Thalassocrat of Archaera..."

These sound like familiar names with slight changes of spelling. Remembering "Thalassocrat" from an alien planet in Anderson's Technic History, I have finally googled it and found that it means a ruler of the sea, which I had not suspected.

Khroman's men have just captured the pirate, Corun. The idea seems to be to indicate up front that this is sword and sorcery fiction by using slight variations on names of already established characters. The reader expects to enjoy a familiar kind of narrative but will probably find that there is some new slant to it if the author is AA Craig (Poul Anderson). However, I will take it slowly since I am not quickly drawn into this kind of reading! (And, of course, life goes on, even for a blogger.)

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Hi, Paul!

Actually, I was already some what familiar with terms like "thalassocrat." I think I first came across the work when reading about the history of the Iberian Kingdom of Aragon in the Middle Ages. As its power grew, Aragon conquered or annexed the Balearic Islands, Sicily, and Naples. Hence, some historians called it the "Thalassocracy."

And we get some idea about Aragon and how fierce her warriors were from reading Poul Anderson's historical novel ROGUE SWORD.