Wednesday, 21 September 2016


We seek information about Tridaig, the modern Merseian co-capital which did not exist in Falkayn's Commonwealth period but does exist in Flandry's Imperial period. However, the little that we are told about Tridaig is only to contrast it with the original capital, Ardaig.

"Ardaig, the original capital, had grown to surround that bay where the River Oiss poured into the Wilwidh Ocean..." (Young Flandry, p. 89)

This is an evocative and substantial setting: an ocean, a bay, a river, a city - nature, life and civilization. On another planet in the Technic History:

"Where the mighty Sagittarius flows into the Gulf of Centaurs, Avalon's second city - the only one besides Gray which rated the name - had arisen as riverport, seaport, spaceport, industrial center, and mart." (Rise Of The Terran Empire, p. 499)

I like the three kinds of port. Back to Ardaig:

"...and its hinterland was now a megalopolis eastward to the Hun foothills." (ibid.)

Poul Anderson, while writing, would have been conscious of the connotations of the word, "Hun."

"The last thing he heard was thunder. It sounded like the hoofs of horses bearing westward the Hunnish midnight." (Time Patrol, p. 465)

Ardaig is ancient, traditional, leisurely, ceremonious, leisurely, "...the cultural and artistic center..." (ibid.) By contrast, Tridaig is:

"...young, technology-oriented, brawling with traffic and life, seething with schemes and occasional violence." (ibid.)

Ketlan mentioned that his daughter, my granddaughter, Yossi, liked London on a brief visit because of its dynamism. London is Ardaig and Tridaig in one.

"Tridaig shouted. Ardaig murmured..." (Young Flandry, p. 93)

This is a good contrast but the sentence is not finished. There are five more words about Ardaig:

"...beneath a low salt wind." (ibid.)

That is a wind from the Wilwidh Ocean but a low wind in accordance with Ardaig's ancient tranquility.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Brief, but evocative this description by Poul Anderson of the differences in the two Merseian co-capitals.

And it's good that London is still a vigorous, bustling, and dynamic capital. And still remembering the UK's ancient past.