Q&As with Christopher: True Names, Magic and Elva, and Comparing Eragon to Riders of Old

sun, sea, true names
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@Cameron_Merron: What actually caused Eragon’s fits of back pain?

Bad mojo from the spirits that controlled Durza. Plus, some injuries are just harder than others to heal.

@Ramziyahh: What is Selena’s mother’s name?

Huh. Haven’t come up with that yet. (Would be the same as Garrow’s mother, of course.)

@Nickadams2002: In Inheritance, before he gets blown up, Galbatorix casts a spell. Waise neiat. Wouldn’t that cause Eragon to cease existing?

Galbatorix was only applying it to himself.

@DarchangelGamin: Why didn’t the dragons try to also erase the name of Galbatorix? Wouldn’t that have been more effective?

It would have, but again, their magic is hard to control. And they didn’t erase the names of any of the Forsworn.

@Faydedd: Brisingr page 86 says the word “vehicle”. They weren’t invented yet. ☹

Sure they were! A carriage or a chariot is still a vehicle.

What ages were the Eldunari in Galbatorix’s possession?

Galbatorix had a mix of Eldunarí. Some young, some old.

Why didn’t the burrow grubs and shadow owls already have names in the ancient language?

Because they didn’t exist before the fall of the Riders, and thus, no one had ever named them.

The Rock of Kuthian spell for recognizing Eragon’s true name, making everybody forget and letting them remember about the eggs only once Galbatorix was defeated – built or instinctual?

Both. The spell was constructed by Vrael and several other Riders, but it was the dragon’s magic that made it work.

Elva is dragon marked- can she use magic?

I wouldn’t be surprised if Elva learns to use magic as she grows up.

Can the true name of Alagaësia also change after a while like the name of people changes? That way if Eragon returns he will not be returning to Alagaësia but instead a different country altogether.

That’s a very interesting way of looking at it. In fact, I don’t think anyone else has thought of that. I won’t say whether or not you’re right, but that’s a very interesting point…

How powerful is Eragon compared to the Riders of old?

With the Eldunarí, far, far more powerful. Without the Eldunarí, about equal with any elf Rider.

@davidiocolemanPVP: If a dragon egg hatched for someone who’s born deaf, would the mental link allow them to hear, and learn?

It would, actually, but only as long as they are in mental contact. Good question though!


@Peytato116: How many licks does it take to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop?

Depends. Are you a dragon?

What do you think is the main problem that plagues adaptations of fantasy fiction? For example, did you ever watch Earthsea, the miniseries based on Le Guin’s work, or the film based on Susan Cooper’s The Dark is Rising? What did you think of them?

I’ve seen the Dark is Rising film but not the Earthsea miniseries. I’d say that the biggest problem is that many of the people who adapt fantasy don’t take it as seriously as they ought to. They look at it and say, “Oh, it has magic and dragons and it’s for kids—that’s silly! Let’s change this or this or this.” The most successful fantasy adaptations (Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Twilight) are those that hew closest to the source material.

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Immanuela Meijer

Immanuela is the Paolinis' webmaster, archivist, and all around "make-things-go" Renaissance woman.