Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Rex Quondam Rexque Futurus?

James Joyce wrote:

"Ireland, my first and only land,
"Where Christ and Caesar are hand in hand."

Thus, Christ and Caesar personify Church and State. Julius Caesar's surname became four titles:

Czar (Tsar)
Kaisar i Hind -

- although not also "Shah" as I had thought.

Julius' heir, Augustus, was given the title, "Imperator," Commander/Emperor. British rule in India meant that the King of England became "Kaisar i Hind" and "Rex Imperator," King Emperor.

What is my point? That is a lot of historical influence and maybe makes Poul Anderson's Terran Empire and Jerry Pournelle's Empire of Man seem less unlikely? Although I still hope that humanity will go beyond such forms of political organization in future.

Addendum: I misquoted Joyce from memory. See here


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

An interestingly SHAPED coin you chose for an illustration. Btw, I have a silver one rupee coin of George VI from India dated 1944 which my mother picked up during a brief visit there.

Commenting on your last sentence, I am EXTREMELY skeptical humanity will ever discard the state, whatever form it takes, short of the Second Coming of Christ. Because, like it or not, the state fills a real need for mankind, despite its many flaws and being so easily prone to abuse. And this proneness to corruption in or of the state, republic or monarchy, comes from our FALLEN and imperfect human nature.


Sean M. Brooks said...

I forgot to add to my previous note that S.M. Stirling's novel THE PESHAWAR LANCERS shows us British rule in India continuing and becoming more "Indianized."