Hedgeland revolves around the object known as the Kiste - pronounced
kist (as in kissed) + e (e as in He). In Hedgeland it is a device for time travel
but in history it was a sacred object in the Eleusinian Mysteries of ancient
Greece. The terms of Cardiwen's world likewise come from the little we do
know of the Eleusinian Mysteries, for the rites and secrets of the Mysteries
have been kept even to today.
Basically, the Mysteries were all about Persephone, the daughter of
Demeter who was the goddess of human cultivation of nature. One day while
Persephone was out picking flowers she was abducted by the god Hades, the
ruler of the underworld. Demeter had no idea where her daughter was, and
searched for her for nine days. Finally she was horrified to learn that Hades
had taken Persephone to the Underworld as his bride, and all this with the
consent of Persephone's father Zeus.
Demeter was so heartbroken by the betrayal that she left the gods and
went to live with humans in a place called Eleusis. For a whole year she
would not allow any crops to grow on earth. Finally Zeus sent the messenger
god Hermes to order Hades to let Persephone go, but Hades was madly in
love with her. Before she left, Hades gave her some pomegranate seeds to
Demeter and Persephone were reunited at Eleusis but Demeter soon
discovered that Persephone had eaten something in the Underworld, which
meant she had to return there for a few months of the year. And so the story
goes, the earth blooms with flowers when Demeter is above the ground, but
the earth is barren when she returns to her lover Hades.
The Kiste, so important in Hedgeland, was one of the sacred objects
in the Eleusinian Mysteries. In ancient Greece, there was a festival of the
Greater Mysteries which lasted for ten days in September.
The first part of the festival was the bringing of the sacred objects
from Eleusis to a temple at the base of the Acropolis. After the procession,
the initiates entered the Telesterion, a large pillared hall. In the center of
the Telesterion was the Anaktoron. Only the hierophants could enter the
Anaktoron. Before the initiates could enter the Telesterion, they had to
chant, "I have fasted; I have drunk the Kykeon; I have taken the Kiste, and
after working it I have put it back in the open basket."
We do know that the Kykeon was a fermented barley and herb-based
drink used as a base for potions by sorcerers, and that the initiates chanted
after drinking it. No one knows anything else about the rites, as the penalty
for divulging them was death, which was a bit off-putting. The elements of the
Rites were called the "Unrepeatables." To this day, we have no idea of what
Hedgeland, an urban fantasy of time travel. Dr April Neuland, a Professor of Ancient
Languages turned non-fiction writer, has been plagued by dreams all her life, dreams
of her past life in the Otherworld. Meanwhile, in a parallel dimension of April's
past and Caridwen's future, Worthing, a Future History Professor, has allied with
the Military to access Future Internet communications and use new technology
to influence April to write an ebook novel revealing where she, in her past life as
Caridwen, hid the Kiste, a device to travel through time and space. Hedgeland weaves
all three time/space frames: Caridwen, Worthing, and April. Hedgeland is the first in
the Hedgecraft Sequence, but is a fully self contained novel with no cliff hangers.
Author Dr Ann Nyland was on Faculty at the University of New England, Australia.
She is a grammar pedant, ancient languages translator, and best selling non-fiction
author of such books as The Complete Books of Enoch; Angels, Archangels and Angel
Categories: What the Ancients Said; The Book of Jubilees; A Devil of a Job to Find
Satan in the Bible, among others.
Author Dr Ann Nyland was on Faculty at the University of New England, Australia. She is a grammar pedant, ancient languages translator, and best selling non-fiction author of such books as The Complete Books of Enoch; Angels, Archangels and Angel Categories: What the Ancients Said; The Book of Jubilees; A Devil of a Job to Find Satan in the Bible, among others. Hedgeland is her first novel.
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