Thursday, 28 April 2016

Lir Way

(Today, we visited Birmingham Central Mosque.)

According to pp. 137, 144 of Roma Mater (London, 1989) by Poul and Karen Anderson, Lir Way, the main east-west avenue of Ys, stretches from an arch by Skipper's Market to High Gate which opens onto Aquilonian Way. However, the map of Ys on p. 11 shows Taranis Way in this position and Lir Way crossing it at right angles in the Forum at the city centre, thus stretching from north to south.

According to the text, Gratillonius and Quinipilis, one of his Nine Queens, leave Quinipilis's house, which opens directly onto a street, and walk along the street until it joins Lir Way. Near the end of the street, they can see Elven Gardens and the adjoining temple of Belisama. Lir Way (or maybe it is Taranis Way) brings them to High Gate, Warriors' House and Dragon House. There they climb the stairs to the top of the city wall and to the tower called the Gaul. Walking south, they pass the Roman tower. They see Point Vanis to the north, Cape Rach to the south, many rooftop catch basins, a storage tower for water from the canal and buildings of as many as fifteen stories.

Taranis Way is said to run from Aurochs Gate to Northbridge Gate whereas the map shows Lir Way doing this. Gratillonius and Quinipilis pass Goose Fair by Aurochs Gate. The description gives us two other senses:

"Savouriness drifted in smoke from foodstuffs, merchants cried their wares from booths." (p. 141)

From the Raven Tower, they see bastions and the sea portal. They descend and pass the shipyard. p. 149 says that they turn left towards the temple of Lir although the map suggests that they would turn right at this point. They climb back up by the Gull Tower and continue to walk around the city wall, passing Northbridge Gate, Star House and the Water Tower that is used as an observatory. They reenter the city at the Gaul.

"In Ys the idea was current that consciousness resided in the head." (p. 151)

Where else would consciousness reside except behind the eyes, nose and palate and between the ears. Animal life might be located in the stomach but surely not awareness and thought? - although I have read that the Biblical phrase "hardness of heart" means lack of understanding, not lack of compassion.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Dang! It seems you found an inconsistency, and a fairly serious one at that, in the maps given THE KING OF YS. I think it was Mrs. Anderson who drew the maps--so I hope the mistake was the printer's, not hers.

My view is that in a COMPLETE COLLECTED WORKS OF POUL ANDERSON the map of Ys should be corrected to conform with the text.