Saturday, 17 September 2016

King Arthur And Van Rijn

Poul Anderson, "Lodestar" IN Anderson, David Falkayn: Star Trader (New York, 2010), pp. 633-680.

An Ythrian tells Nicholas van Rijn:

"'In the end, God the Hunter strikes every being and everything which beings have made. Upon your way of life I see His shadow. Let the new come to birth in peace.'" (p. 680)

We have contemplated King Arthur in Poul Anderson's works here. Now let us quote Arthur in circumstances similar to those experienced by van Rijn:

 And slowly answer’d Arthur from the barge:
“The old order changeth, yielding place to new,
And God fulfils himself in many ways,
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

On reflection I have to disagree with what that Ythrian space captain said to Old Nick. Because the "new thing" we see coming to birth in "Lodestar" was the beginning of the end of the Polesotechnic League, the collapse of the Solar Commonwealth, an era of anarchy and chaos for Technic Civilization as a whole. Those were not GOOD things!

Fortunately, of course, order was restored when the Terran Empire arose.


Paul Shackley said...

But Hirharouk did not know what was to come. He was being optimistic.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I dunno, my recollection was of Hirharouk being, if anything, rather grim and fatalistic. Or perhaps the good thing he wanted to see peacefully coming to birth was the Supermetals company? However useful, it seems rather a small thing.


Anonymous said...

Kaor, Sean!

I think Hirharouk's point was that the Polesotechnic League as it had been could not be preserved. That doesn't mean that would would follow would be good, but that there may come a time to cut your losses and adapt to current circumstances, even if they are not what they should be. And Supermetals apparently did some good for some poor planets, even if it couldn't stave off the Troubles.

Best Regards,
Nicholas D. Rosen

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Nicholas!

I'm always glad to see comments by you!

I think we both understood Hirharouk more or less the same way. That is, by the time of "Lodestar" the Polesotechnic League had passed its best years and would soon start to disintegrate. Which means foresighted people like Old Nick and David Falkayn had to make plans for cutting losses and adapting to bad times.

And, I agree, Supermetals did do some good for many of the poorer planets within Technic Civilization during the 17 years it controlled Mirkheim. Including both human and non human planets. My point being that a single corporation like Supermetals couldn't stave off the Troubles.

Regards! Sean