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Dragut’s Smile - What did it mean?
Q. While I have long been converted to the fact that Kuzum is Gabriel & Joleta's offspring, there is a small part of my brain that continues to wonder why Dragut smiled when he returned Gabriel's money and announced that the child was of no value to his parents or the Sultan and that he intended to sell him. This seems like a good time for the switch to have been made.
Dame de Doubtance
Q. I've never been comfortable with the thought of Lymond being a 'believer'
in the Dame's schemes and prophecies. Someone recently suggested that his identifying
her with Camilla of the Volscians was a process of distancing himself from her
- putting his free will against her playing 'fate'.
The Event in the Tent - who was it?
Q. Is it really Francis or Gabriel in the tent with Oonagh? In PF, who is the "Unbeliever" who visits Oonagh in her tent and makes love to her? Some of us believe, like Oonagh, that it is Francis. Others believe Dragut when he later tells Oonagh it could not have been Francis, and that therefore it was Gabriel. She seems to believe Dragut, and on this side of the argument, the author did tell us after their first love scene (in QP) that this was the first and last time Francis and Oonagh would make love. Some say this was an act uncharacteristic of Francis but very characteristic of Gabriel; others feel that had it been Gabriel, he would later have taunted Francis with this and he never does. How could Oonagh not know the difference between Francis and Gabriel - even in the dark - when they are physically so different? So who is right?
Guzel and her fate
Q. Guzel chose to fly in the face of the Dame de Doubtance's prophecies, believing she could alter destiny or make her own. Did she in fact, as was posited by one character, choose Vishnevetsky as a form of suicide? Did she see no other avenue of advancement, or was she - the idea which puzzles me most - emotionally involved for the first time and unable to cope? I understand that this character, unlike her friend Roxelana Sultan, was not based on a historical personage; where did she come from as an idea?
Did the Geomalers really exist?
Q. I am interested in the terms "Geomaler" and "Pilgrims of Love," such
as the character Mikel in PAWN. Obviously these terms are Ms. Dunnett's creation
but they seem so familiar to me. Can she relate the historical basis, if any,
This answer is not from Dorothy directly but is from information I've received
and which is also mentioned in the Dorothy Dunnett Companion.
What was the Relationship between Lymond and Wenceslas in Ringed Castle?
Q. My question is about the relationship between Lymond and Venceslas in "The Ringed Castle." What's going on? It isn't just a homosexual relationship is it, because at the time, Lymond is sleeping with Guzel. And also, in previous books, Lymond's homosexual relationships always seem to be a form of manipulation rather than simple pleasure.
Extra comment from Bill Marshall. I mentioned to the person who asked this question that I'd found the scenes with the Aga Morat difficult to interpret, and that seemed to me a more important case, so I put both parts in to Dorothy. I was particularly intrigued to know what was behind the scene where Jerott is called see to the Aga Morat and finds him and Lymond arguing, and Lymond sends him away. Is this a simple case of Lymond protecting Jerott from the Aga's advances or is there more going on? I'm assuming that Lymond had agreed to advances to himself to protect the others after the ambush.
Lymond and Eloise
A common question concerns the relationship between Lymond and Eloise, and
whether, as Richard seems to think sometimes, there was any incestuous element
To which she later added this further response:
St. Mary's - Fact or Fiction?
Q. Is there any historical basis for the mercenary troop at St. Mary's in Disorderly Knights?
This bring us to a subsidiary question that is often posed by non-Scots - How
do you pronounce Buccleuch?
Original poetry in Checkmate
Q. In Checkmate, what was the only original poetry by DD, later to be noted on the Rosebush Gift?
Hexagonal brooch in GK
Q. Is the large Hexagonal brooch in GK based on a real piece of jewellry? ‘A vast, hexagonal brooch set in ebony and diamonds shouted into the sunshine in a cacophony of light. The thing was enormous. Crouch, sitting within yards of the bed, could see the centrepiece was a heart set with pointed diamonds: around the heart and attached to it by foliated gilt wire were crystal plaques, each bearing an angel's head, bewinged and carved in onyx: the plaque below the point of the heart was joined to it by a scroll, and on the scroll in diamonds were the initial letters H and D, entwined. It was the most expensive-looking jewel Mr. Crouch had ever seen in his life.... "H for Henri, D for Diane de Poitiers!" cried Mr. Crouch.’ Anyway, what struck me about this description this time around is that it sounds like an actual piece of jewelry that DD might have seen somewhere.
A Special Item
Dorothy very kindly passed me a copy of an astrological chart for Francis Crawford which she had prepared by a professional astrologer some years ago. Was this what was forcast by the Dame de Doubtance?
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