January 29, 2006

Part 10 (A Thousand Leagues of Wind)

Chapter 38

地綱 [ちこう] The Law of the Land
天綱 [てんこう] The Divine Decrees or The Great Colonnade (太綱)

Rakushun further explains the origins of the rule of law in Chapter 42 of Shadow of the Moon.

During Youko's argument with Enho over taxes, Ono glosses the Duchy of Yellow (黄領) as chokkatsuchi (直轄地), meaning a domain under the direct control of the shogun, meaning in this case, Keiki.

When Youko considers using an imperial rescript to punish Gahou, Marquis of Wa, she is debating the merits of bills of attainder, laws promulgated with the intent of punishing specific individuals, independent of a generally and equally applied rule of law. In the United States, bills of attainder are prohibited in Article I, Section 9 of the Constitution.

The verb "ostracize" comes from the Greek, ostrakon, a potsherd used as voting token. The people of Athens were allowed to literally vote people off the island, exiling them for ten years. This early form of a bill of attainder, alllowing individuals to be punished according to the whims of public opinion, cumulatively caused enormous damage to Athenian democracy.

Chapter 39

"From the husk you born, to the husk you shall return." Ono is paraphrasing Genesis 3:19: "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return."

Chapter 40

北路 [ほくろ] Hokuro, border crossing between Ryuu and En
院白沢 [いんはくたく] In Hakutaku, Chousai of En

"She said that there was no more distance between us than that of two people standing next to each other." This exchange takes place in chapter 52 of Shadow of the Moon.

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