Sunday, September 15, 2013

Sunday Guest: the White Witch

From: CS Lewis' The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia)

The quote: "My poor child, how cold you look! Come and sit with me here on the sledge, and I will put my mantle round you and we will talk."

The pic: Lewis apparently describes her as a vampire, that's why she here has a 'lost' beauty, or even a corpse's. And she looks sad because evildoers can't be truly happy, and because she maybe senses that she will soon be killed; not only defeated but killed, though virtually immortal.

The curio: The Witch "putting her mantle around" her 'faithful child' seems a blasphemous parody of Virgin Mary, especially as she was portrayed in late Medieval art.

The question: In the final one-volume version of the saga, the Wardrobe episode (the first to be written) has been placed after The Magician's Nephew, so it sounds like the White Witch is the same as Jadis: but are they? Their origins, powers and personalities are quite different. And vice versa, the Lady of the Green Kirtle in The Silver Chair is introduced as "a" witch -- or "the" Witch, Lilith herself, now risen somehow?