Harley Warren, WWI & Carter's Age

lynnfredricks

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#1
Can someone who knows better enlighten me on something. I have been rereading The Silver Key, and there is a passage there that makes me think the relationship with Harley Warren (five or seven years long) and Carter happened after Carter's time in the French Foreign Legion.

I may be entirely off but, it seems that Carter was already rather old (in his 40s) when he was
'nearly mortally wounded' in France, and that the incident of Harley Warren's demise occurred after that. That would mean Carter was no longer tripping it to Dreamland (post 30), but delving into the occult (but not partially suicidal at 50), which would make sense given their shared interest.

Am I wrong about Carter's relative age at the time he was in the French Foreign Legion?
 

lynnfredricks

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#3
"Randolph Carter...disappeared from the sight of man on the seventh of October, 1928, at the age of fifty-four." Through the Gates of the Silver Key.
That's right. He was wounded in WWI in 1916 - so he'd be 42 or so then, and we know he had an adventure in the South of France with Etienne de Marigny.

I am also assuming here that its Harley Warren who was "a man in the South who was shunned and feared for the blasphemous things" in "The Silver Key".

In "The Statement of Randolph Carter", it says he'd been Harley Warren's close friend for five years. In "The Silver Key" they'd known (and lived together) for seven years. Its hard to tell if they actually lived together for seven years or that they had lived together during that time.

But then there is supposedly the visit to Harley Warren in 1919 with Etienne de Marigny (Through the Gates of the Silver Key) - which could be the beginning of the five year friendship.

That seven years I am guessing fits in between 1916/17 and 1924, culminating the events of "The Statement of Randolph Carter". That would also explain his despondency when turning 50.

It seems a bit odd that he would be so 'dominated' by Harley Warren, given all that he'd been through by that time in his life. When I first read that, I had assumed that Carter would have been younger and more impressionable.
 
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Ningauble

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#4
The chronology of the Carter stories is a pretty interesting matter. Take, for example, Richard Upton Pickman. We know that The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath must take place before 1904, because by 30 Randolph Carter had lost the ability to dream (let's say he is in his mid-20s). We know that "Pickman's Model" must be set in 1926, because it says that Pickman disappeared in 1926 in "History of the Necronomicon".
Yet Pickman is a ghoul in the dreamlands at the time of Carter's dream-quest, 20+ years before.
If we play the Sherlock Holmes game, we can perhaps conclude that Pickman's association with ghouls was of long standing and affected his dream-self before it affected his physical body, so that he was already a ghoul in his dreams more than 20 years before he actually made the physical change and disappeared. (Or did he ever change physically? Perhaps it was just his dream-self that changed, and he disappeared for completely different reasons? Who knows?)
 

lynnfredricks

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#5
If we play the Sherlock Holmes game, we can perhaps conclude that Pickman's association with ghouls was of long standing and affected his dream-self before it affected his physical body, so that he was already a ghoul in his dreams more than 20 years before he actually made the physical change and disappeared. (Or did he ever change physically? Perhaps it was just his dream-self that changed, and he disappeared for completely different reasons? Who knows?)
That's an interesting one! I believe in Dream-Quest it was also stated that ghouls could travel back and forth, assuming physically, by way of their tunnels.
 

w h pugmire esq

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#6
There is so much ambiguity in Lovecraft. But we do have a solid recording of dates: THE CHRONOLOGY OUT OF TIME: DATES IN THE FICTION OF H. P. LOVECRAFT, by Peter Cannon (Necronomicon Press, 1986). This really needs to be reprinted. Here are ye entries for 1912:
A deeply learned Sussex clergyman of occultist leanings--the Reverend Arthur Brooke Winters-Hall--professes to identify the markings on the Eltdown Shards with some of the so-called "pre-human hieroglyphs" persistently cherished and esoterically handed down in certain mystical circles. (CB)
Of the reality of the jungle city described by old Sir Wade, Arthur Jermyn has no further doubts; and is hardly astonished when early this year he comes upon what is left of it. (FAJ)
1 May. Wilbur Whateley is conceived. (DH)
Summer. Peaslee charters a ship and sails in the Arctic, north of Spitzbergen, afterward showing signs of disappointment. (SOOT)
(Late) Peaslee spends weeks alone beyond the limits of previous or subsequent exploration in the vast limestone cavern systems of western Virginia. (SOOT)
and for 1913: 2 February. (Sunday, 5 a.m.) Wilbur Whateley is born on Candlemas, which people in Dunwich curiously observe under another name. (DH)
 

lynnfredricks

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#7
I just found another inconsistency - we know in Polaris that the men of Lomar wiped out the Gnophkehs, but the wise old Zoog in Dream-Quest tells RC that the Gnophkehs wiped out Olathoe. I guess you can't trust someone who will eat a cat.
 

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