Sunday, 20 November 2016
Palatial Privacy, Lack Of
"They were dining in one of the smaller chambers in the King's private rooms - or as private as anything could be, in this ant farm of a palace."
-SM Stirling, On The Oceans Of Eternity (New York, 2000), Chapter Eight, p. 145.
In this timeline, the Queen is a time traveler.
Cyrus the Great/Keith Denison:
"'Sometimes I've thought that was the hardest thing to take about this situation, never having a minute to myself. The best I can do is throw everybody out of the room I'm in; but they stick around just beyond the door, under the windows, guarding, listening. I hope their dear loyal souls fry.'
"'Privacy hasn't been invented yet either,' Everard reminded him. 'And VIPs like you never did have much, in all history.'"
-Poul Anderson, The Time Patrol (New York, 1991), p. 50.
In this timeline, Cyrus is a time traveler.
Even though Babylonian royalty lack privacy, they enjoy their meal and surroundings. Reclining on couches, cushioned in Moroccan-like leather, they eat, with bronze and gold forks, from a low table with ivory lion's paw feet and an ebony top inlaid with lapis, ivory and semiprecious stones:
beef and lentils with apricots;
skewered grilled lamb;
spiced steamed vegetables.
The meal is accompanied by gentle music, vivid tapestries, kerosene lamps, cedarwood and incense. All five senses are addressed.