Monday, 10 July 2017


Back from London late last night and eating a hasty breakfast. There are two points of interest in SM Stirling, The High King Of Montival (New York, 2009), Chapter Eight, pp. 154-155.

First, a victory feast and grave-ale in a mead hall where lanterns illuminate pillars carved with gods and heroes:

roast pork;
blood sausage;
mounded heaps of loaves;
French-fried potatoes;
ripe cheese;
fruit pies and ice cream;
barrels refilling mugs and horns.

Secondly, the newly acclaimed king is to be called Bjarni Ironrede. This nickname/title should need no explanation to Poul Anderson fans. See here


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

King Bjarni IRONREDE of Norrheim??? I should hope all fans of Poul Anderson would recognize "Ironrede"! I certainly hope I did when I first read that part of THE HING KING OF MONTIVAL. Yet another Stirlingian allusion to Poul Anderson, and one I love!

And as for that victory feast, only people as physically ACTIVE as the post-Change survivors could get away with eating like that! Unless, of course, you were Nicholas van Rijn! (Smiles)


S.M. Stirling said...

Also they're living in a cold climate -- that part of northern Maine is fertile (there's a lot of big mixed farms there) but the growing season is short. Hence the emphasis on roots and grains and meat/dairy. It's a healthy enough diet if you're careful to avoid certain deficiencies. (Eating the organ meats helps, for example.) So does collecting and drying/freezing as much in the way of wild fruits as possible. Maine blueberries are great.

S.M. Stirling said...

Oh, and making "tea" of various types; spruce "tea" has a high vitamin C content.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Dear Mr. Stirling,

I had not realized Maine had that much fertile land, suitable for farming, despite the short growing season. I tend to think of Maine as being largely FORESTED. I knew organ meats helps to avoid suffering deficiencies. And SPRUCE tea sounds rather odd!