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Encyclopedia > The Sword of the Lictor
The first two books of The Book of the New Sun, 2000 omnibus printing.

The Book of the New Sun is a novel (initially published in four volumes) written by fantasy and science fiction author Gene Wolfe chronicling the journey of Severian, an apprentice torturer exiled from the Guild of Torturers for committing the one unforgiveable act, to the highest position in the land. Severian, who has a perfect memory, tells the story in first person, and the books are presented by Wolfe as being a translation of Severian's writings. The series takes place in the distant future, where the Sun has dimmed considerably, and the world is slowly cooling. Download high resolution version (1106x1620, 610 KB)The cover of the 2000 printing of the first half of The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe, comprising the volumes The Shadow of the Torturer and The Claw of the Concilliator. ... Download high resolution version (1106x1620, 610 KB)The cover of the 2000 printing of the first half of The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe, comprising the volumes The Shadow of the Torturer and The Claw of the Concilliator. ... This article is about the year 2000. ... For other definitions of fantasy, see fantasy (psychology). ... Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology, or both, upon society and persons as individuals. ... Gene Wolfe (born May 7, 1931) is an American science fiction and fantasy writer. ... Photographic memory, eidetic memory, or total recall, is the ability to recall images, sounds, or objects in memory with great accuracy and in seemingly unlimited volume. ... First person can refer to the following: A grammatical person or a closely related Perspective (storytelling). ... The Sun is the star at the centre of our Solar system. ...


The four books in the series are:

There is also a sequel to the series called The Urth of the New Sun (nominated for the 1988 Hugo Award and Nebula Award), which takes place several years after the events of The Book of the New Sun. Wolfe has since written two series that exist loosely within Severian's universe, The Book of the Long Sun (a four-book series set on a generation ship; two of the books were nominated for Nebula Awards) and The Book of the Short Sun (a three-book series following the inhabitants of the generation ship after their long journey has finally finished). The Nebula is an award given each year by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), for the best science fiction/fantasy fiction published in the United States during the two previous years. ... The Hugo Award is given every year for the best science fiction or fantasy stories of the previous year, and for related areas in fandom, art and dramatic presentation. ... The Nebula is an award given each year by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), for the best science fiction/fantasy fiction published in the United States during the two previous years. ... The Hugo Award is given every year for the best science fiction or fantasy stories of the previous year, and for related areas in fandom, art and dramatic presentation. ... The Nebula is an award given each year by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), for the best science fiction/fantasy fiction published in the United States during the two previous years. ... The Nebula is an award given each year by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), for the best science fiction/fantasy fiction published in the United States during the two previous years. ... The Hugo Award is given every year for the best science fiction or fantasy stories of the previous year, and for related areas in fandom, art and dramatic presentation. ... The Nebula is an award given each year by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), for the best science fiction/fantasy fiction published in the United States during the two previous years. ... A generation ship is a hypothetical type of starship that would travel much slower than light across great distances between stars (see interstellar travel). ... The Nebula is an award given each year by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), for the best science fiction/fantasy fiction published in the United States during the two previous years. ...


The Book of the New Sun has been widely analyzed for its deeper meanings, some of which have been published, such as Michael Andre-Druissi's Lexicon Urthus (ISBN 0964279592). Wolfe uses extensive allegory within the series, as Severian is identified as a Christ/Apollo figure: He is destined to revitalize the Sun and save the Earth while at the same time destroying it. Adding further to the books' many riddles is Wolfe's usage of archaic, obscure, or even invented words to describe the world of the far future. Wolfe explains that this is one of the difficulties in translating Severian's writing ("in a tongue that has not yet achieved existence") into English. An allegory (from Greek αλλος, allos, other, and αγορευειν, agoreuein, to speak in public) is a figurative mode of representation conveying a meaning other than and in addition to the literal. ...


The New Sun series belongs to the Dying Earth subgenre (a title inspired by Jack Vance's popular Dying Earth series), a kind of science fiction set in the distant future when the Sun is dying, set against a background of mysterious and obscure powers and events. Dying Earth subgenre is a subgenre of science fantasy which takes place at the end of Time, when the Sun slowly fades and the laws of the Universe themselves fail, with the science becoming indistinguishable from magic. ... John Holbrook Vance (b. ... Dying Earth is a series of fantasy books by Jack Vance. ...


See also

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations by or about:
  • ISBN 0312890176 — Volume 1, Shadow & Claw
  • ISBN 0312890184 — Volume 2, Sword & Citadel

  Results from FactBites:
 
Tor and Forge Books: Sword & Citadel: The Second Half of 'The Book of the New Sun': (New Sun): Books: Gene Wolfe (611 words)
Sword and Citadel brings together the final two books of the tetralogy in one volume:
The Sword of the Lictor is the third volume in Wolfe's remarkable epic, chronicling the odyssey of the wandering pilgrim called Severian, driven by a powerful and unfathomable destiny, as he carries out a dark mission far from his home.
The Citadel of the Autarch brings The Book of the New Sun to its harrowing conclusion, as Severian clashes in a final reckoning with the dread Autarch, fulfilling an ancient prophecy that will forever alter the realm known as Urth.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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