Nostradamus/Baby Nostradamus/People of Paper

In People of Paper, the character Baby Nostradamus is gifted with certain… powers, if you will, that allow him to do a few different things. He could touch someone and telepathically transmit thoughts to them, he could predict the future, and he could shield this knowledge or reveal it to whoever he wished. He tried to teach his powers to Little Merced, and eventually she learned to do the same. However, when he tried to exercise his powers, he became weakened physically and morally.

The historical figure Nostradamus could only do one of these things: predict the future. Even that is debated, nearly all of his predictions are doubted to an extent, yet there were so many that most people assume he must have had some idea about the majority of them. Nostradamus was not telepathically inclined, as Baby Nostradamus was, but still the similarities in their future predicting makes this a more than valid symbolic name choice by Plascencia for his character.

Baby Nostradamus believes thah he must abide by a certain set of rules, as listed on pg 167:

1. Seers shall not be under commission of state either by threat or hire.

2. Services may not be exchanged for coins or touch of flesh.

3. Impending deaths are not to be announced, whether kin or water.

Baby Nostradamus took these rules very seriously; he did not even tell his mother she was going to die. Conversely, Real Nostradamus wrote almanacs and made money from his predictions, in fact it was his principle source of income. This clearly violates not exchanging services for coins. Also, many of Real Nostradamus’ predictions involve death, such as the claims that he predicted Hitler and the many deaths he caused, various Muslim invasions of Europe, all of which come with deaths, the Atomic bombs, more deaths there, etc. Nostradamus announced impending deaths all the time; it was kind of his m.o. for a while. Complete contradiction with Baby Nostradamus.

Jason Glasser

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~ by diamondace on March 29, 2010.

 
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