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Perelandra Dedication and Preface

An archived study of the second book of Lewis' theological science fiction Space Trilogy.

Perelandra Dedication and Preface

Postby Kanakaberaka » 17 Oct 2004, 22:41

After a too long hiatus I have resumed the C.S. Lewis' Space Trilogy study.
The dedication is : To Some Ladies at Watage
Wantage is a small town in Oxfordshire. But I have no idea who the Ladies are. The library at Wantage was noted on a website I found. I wonder if the Ladies may have been Librarians?

It's no surprise that the Preface mentions the first book of The Trilogy. But there is also a note about the characters being fictitious (of course) and that ..."none of them is allegorical". I remember that Lewis had a very narrow definition about what an allegory is. I think that he wanted Perelandra to be seen as an original fantasy rather than simply a replay of the book of Genesis.
so it goes...
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Re: Perelandra Dedication and Preface

Postby Sven » 18 Oct 2004, 00:17

Kanakaberaka wrote:After a too long hiatus I have resumed the C.S. Lewis' Space Trilogy study.
The dedication is : To Some Ladies at Watage
Wantage is a small town in Oxfordshire. But I have no idea who the Ladies are. The library at Wantage was noted on a website I found. I wonder if the Ladies may have been Librarians?


Hi, K,
The "Ladies at Wantage" are the members of the Convent of the Community of St. Mary the Virgin, an Anglican Order of Nuns, especially Jack Lewis' close friend Sister Penelope (nee Lawson). Sister Penelope was the author of several works on theology and translator of many of the early Church Father under the pen name "A Religous of CSMV". Sister Penelope and Lewis were correspondents for several years, starting with a fan letter she sent him on Out of the Silent Planet. It was she who gave him the picture of the Shroud of Turin he had hung up in his bedroom. They met in person in 1942, when he came to the convent to give the first of an occasional series of talks to the nuns. Later on, Lewis gave her as a gift the original holoscript of The Screwtape Letters, and told her to get whatever she could for it, and use the money for whatever she liked. She sold it to the the New York Public Library's Berg Collection (go see and give us a field trip report) and used the money to renovate the convents chapel.

One of Sister Penelope's favorite possesions was a copy of the Portugeuse translation of Perelandra, in which "To Some Ladies at Wantage" was translated "To some Wanton Ladies". :)

Selah,
Sven
Rat! he found breath to whisper, shaking. Are you afraid?
Afraid? murmured the Rat, his eyes shining with unutterable love.
Afraid! Of Him? O, never, never! And yet -- and yet -- O, Mole, I am afraid!
Then the two animals, crouching to the earth, bowed their heads and did worship.
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Get thee to a nunery

Postby Kanakaberaka » 18 Oct 2004, 11:16

Thanks for the full details, Sven. I can only find so much on the internet and I don't remember that anecdote in any of the books I have. I had a feeling that the Ladies were nuns.
so it goes...
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Kanakaberaka
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