The Eldil of Perelandra
A clear voice like a chime of remote bells, a voice with no blood in it, spoke out of the air and sent a tingling through his frame.
"They have already set foot on the sand and are beginning to ascend"," it said.
"The small one from Thulcandra is already here," said a second voice.
"Look on him, beloved, and love him," said the first. "He is indeed but breathing dust and a careless touch would unmake him. And in his best thoughts there are such things as mingled as, if we thought them, our light would perish. But he is in the body of Maleldil and his sins are forgiven. His very name in his own tongue is Elwin, the friend of the eldila."
"How great is your knowledge!" said the second voice.
"I have been down into the air of Thulcandra," said the first, "which the small ones call Tellus. A thickened air is full of the Darkened as Deep Heaven is of the Light Ones. I have heard the prisoners there talking in their divided tongues and Elwin has taught me how it is with them."
From these words Ransom knew the speaker was the Oyarsa of Malacandra, the great archon of Mars. He did not, of course, recognize the voice, for there is no difference between one eldil's voice and another's . ...
"I do not understand," said Ransom. "The Woman told me there were no eldila in this world."
"They have not seen my face till to-day," said the second voice, "except as they see it in the water and the roof-heaven, the islands, the caves, and the trees."
~C.S. Lewis, Perelandra (1943)
On this day:
1943 Perelandra (the second volume of Lewis's Space Trilogy) is published by The Bodley Head, London.