Sunday, 13 November 2016
Sultan After Sultan
Whose Doorways are alternate Night and Day,
How Sultan after Sultan with his Pomp
Abode his Hour or two and went his way.
-copied from here.
(We might get through the entire Rubaiyat eventually.)
Nights and days are squares on a chequer-board or doorways.
Poul Anderson shows us the Roman Empire, the Terran Empire, in fact several Terran Emperors, then a time when it is said:
"'...the League, the troubles, the Empire, its fall, the Long Night...every such thing - behind us. In space and time alike.'" (Flandry's Legacy, p. 722)
In space: Old Earth is "...in the spiral arm behind this one..." (p. 713) In time: Anglic is an ancient language. (p. 715)
How better to show that Sultan after Sultan abides his hour, then goes his way, than by writing a future history series with several installments set in an Imperial period and other installments set centuries or millennia later? Despite the title of this omnibus volume, the name of the Imperialist Flandry is not mentioned in any of the post-Imperial installments. Descendants of one group of his enemies are discovered but their original name is not remembered either.
"Abode his hour or two and went his way."
I want to check some details about Ythri but maybe not at this time of night, having just returned from a friend's seventieth birthday party.