Monday, 17 July 2017

The Gods Of Time

I am concurrently reading SM Stirling's Emberverse novel, The High King Of Montival, and rereading what I call "The Gods of Time," i.e., the two instalments of Poul Anderson's Time Patrol series that deal with Northern European mythology, "The Sorrow of Odin the Goth" and "Star of the Sea."

Gods appear in "The Gods of Time" because Time Patrol members adopt such roles whereas the Virgin Mary appeared in an earlier Emberverse novel because that series is set within a "many mansions" polytheology.

The Time Patrol is historical science fiction whereas the Emberverse is perhaps an fsf mix like CS Lewis' Ransom Trilogy, i.e., sf with supernatural elements. Lewis has pagan gods subordinate to the Christian God whereas, in the Emberverse, the deities live in different mansions.

In "The Sorrow of Odin the Goth":

"It was the gods carved on the pillars that seemed to move amidst unrestful shadows..." (Time Patrol, 372, p. 334)

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Well, the Patrol agents who "assumed" divine roles in "The Sorrow Of Odin The Goth" and "Star Of The Sea" did so inadvertently, accidentally, and reluctantly. Because to take on such roles was obviously very risky and likely to endanger the timeline they were trying to protect. I think that should be stressed as well.