Atrus and his books

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Atrus and his books

Postby Vector Cramp » Thu Aug 22, 2013 7:08 am

Here’s a question that has been troubling me for quite some time now:

Where on earth did Atrus get his linking books?


Allow me to explain a little more:

1. It is common knowledge that it requires a special type of book and ink in order for it to be a working linking book. The Guild of Book Makers and the Guild of Ink Makers kept the formulas for these a secret and did not write them down anywhere, passing it orally from generation to generation so Atrus could have not found a document that contain instructions.
2. Gehn never figured it out and instead had to search the city for Kortee’nea (blank books) in order to write all his numbered Ages before his imprisonment on Riven.
3. Atrus could not have visited the city during his time on Myst do to the only book he had that linked to D’ni lead to the prison in K’veer which had the cave-in that blocked the door and that wasn't cleared until the BOD.

With these facts in mind, I see no way the Atrus could have created or brought linking books to his lovely island home. Does anyone know if there is a fact that I missed or an official explanation from Rawa on the matter?
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby HarveyMidnight » Thu Aug 22, 2013 3:19 pm

Atrus seems to use K'veer as his 'office', the place he most often sits & writes. It's located in D'ni...Perhaps, prior to the cave-in, Gehn wanted Atrus to write.. so maybe when he locked Atrus into the room in K'veer, he piled up a huge stack for Atrus to keep on hand?
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby Vector Cramp » Thu Aug 22, 2013 4:25 pm

HarveyMidnight wrote:Atrus seems to use K'veer as his 'office', the place he most often sits & writes. It's located in D'ni...Perhaps, prior to the cave-in, Gehn wanted Atrus to write.. so maybe when he locked Atrus into the room in K'veer, he piled up a huge stack for Atrus to keep on hand?


Two things wrong with that theory:

1. The BOA states that the only thing in the room in K'veer when Atrus was locked in was the Riven descriptive book.

2. Atrus never visited K'veer during his life on Myst because he didn't want to leave a Myst book since he feared that Gehn had escaped Riven. (Hence the reason for Rime)
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby numinous » Thu Aug 22, 2013 6:51 pm

I think the closest thing to an explanation you will find is the fact that before the fall of D'ni Gehn was actually apprenticed to the guild of book makers. "So if he knew how to make books why was he always searching D'ni for kortee'nea?" It's never explicitly started anywhere that i know of but my impression is this...... During Gehn's brief apprenticeship in the guild he was taught the method of making linking books however he never truly perfected this skill and in fact probably mostly forgot it in the preceding years he spent on the surface. When he returned to D'ni following the death of Keta he was insane with grief for his lost wife but also for his lost "civilisation", the D'ni. He must have felt incredibly powerless at that point (in fact his megalomania is just an overcompensation for these feelings of powerlessness and inferiority). This is when he decided to attempt to rebuild the D'ni the only way he knew how, or New ages.

I think it's safe to say Gehn has never been one to put in the time and effort required to do things properly, a fact proven by his method of writing ages. He never spent the time learning the true principles of age creation and instead just copied phrases from other books. I think the same applies to this. Why would Gehn bother relearning from scratch the method of book making when he had a supply of ready made books at his disposal? That's more Gehn's style. It's not until he is trapped on Riven that he is forced to put in some effort to making books himself. The fact that he is able to make them at all shows that he was able to retain some of the method from his early days at the guild but also that he did not have a full grasp on the process, hence his flawed books.

While it is never mentioned in The Book of Atrus I think it would be a fair assumption that Gehn may have shared what little knowledge he had of book creation with Atrus. Anna may also have had some knowledge of the process as well. What gaps remained could have been filled in by Atrus simply experimenting as his is known to do, and probably with much faster success then his father because he was willing to put in his research whereas Gehn was more of a "brute force" kind of guy.

Of course this is mostly speculation. Take it or leave it. :-)
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby Tai'lahr » Thu Aug 22, 2013 7:37 pm

Catherine studied under Gehn, so perhaps she learned how to make the books. And, since she wrote Myst, maybe she intentionally included the materials they would need to make them.
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby dgelessus » Fri Aug 23, 2013 3:21 am

Well, considering how Atrus wrote so many ages just as "experiments", he must have had a practically infinite supply of books. If he had only fifty or so brought with him from somewhere, he would probably been more careful about using them.
So maybe Gehn taught him about book making very early and Atrus remembered it well, but Gehn forgot at some point. So Atrus just wrote an age with the necessary materials in it, and he had an infinite supply of books.
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby Tai'lahr » Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:46 am

Tai'lahr wrote:Catherine studied under Gehn, so perhaps she learned how to make the books. And, since she wrote Myst, maybe she intentionally included the materials they would need to make them.
Oops, Anna wrote Myst, but the point remains the same.

dgelessus wrote:So maybe Gehn taught him about book making very early and Atrus remembered it well, but Gehn forgot at some point. So Atrus just wrote an age with the necessary materials in it, and he had an infinite supply of books.

How typical to try to find a way to credit Atrus and completely ignore the two women who saved his life and had the talent and foresight to write Myst. Maybe, just maybe they knew a thing or two about bookmaking and incorporated it into their plan to save Atrus.
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby dgelessus » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:00 pm

Tai'lahr wrote:
dgelessus wrote:So maybe Gehn taught him about book making very early and Atrus remembered it well, but Gehn forgot at some point. So Atrus just wrote an age with the necessary materials in it, and he had an infinite supply of books.

How typical to try to find a way to credit Atrus and completely ignore the two women who saved his life and had the talent and foresight to write Myst. Maybe, just maybe they knew a thing or two about bookmaking and incorporated it into their plan to save Atrus.

First of all, I haven't read the novels, so I know almost nothing about the pre-Myst plot. Sorry if I'm being ignorant regarding Ti'ana and Katran.
Secondly it seems quite unlikely to me that the bookmaking resources were on Myst Island itself. Maybe just a bit to make a few books to start with, but I'd expect someone (Atrus, Katran, Ti'ana, doesn't matter) to write a separate age with more of the resources in it. Although Myst Island was supposed to be bigger than what we see in the games, I don't think they would make a "book farm" on there. Myst Island was their living place after all.
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby Ahlisendar » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:24 pm

I'm not sure, but I think I remember a part in the book of Atrus where him and Catherine are removing Gehn's linking books, but if I remember correctly, it also says that they took the blank books he had there as well (since he was teaching the islanders to write).
Last edited by Ahlisendar on Sat Aug 24, 2013 5:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby dgelessus » Fri Aug 23, 2013 1:38 pm

Maybe Gehn wrote down how to make the books and someone stole that while imprisoning him.
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Re: Atrus and his books

Postby Rudolfson » Sat Aug 24, 2013 10:16 am

Tai'lahr is obviously right. The women are key to this mystery. If mystery it is. I never doubled back on a journal text or book (only read ti'ana) but I remebered enough to assume exactly what Tai'lahr said at first glance of this topic. Ghen never had real writing skills, and Atrus did nicely so... who is left that must have been well enough versed in the art to have a pupil like Atrus?

Also the topic states that "it is common knowledge..." ans so forth. I claim it is not! It is common knowledge that Ghen was a general, but rather brilliant, failure. He just di nothing right. It is general knowledge that the Guild of Writers guarded the secret well, but it need not be more complicated than leaning to read and write. A skill put forward as magic at some places in time by people safe guarding their power and position.
Well Atrus proved that any man could do it. Yeesha proved that any woman can do a lot more, and we know that Bahro do it with a thought!
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