The Librarians and the Apple of Discord

IMDB : aired December 28, 2014 : previous episode 
John Rogers (executive producer) answers questions about this episode. 
index and explanation of these posts

Plot:

Dragons. Stolen treasure. Bad things ensue. (Also, the reappearance of Flynn and some rather amusing use of meeting rules for benefits to all. Well, mostly all.)

Commentary:

Not so much commentary this episode, apparently.

I do like the Jenkins and Ezekiel scene (about 25 minutes in) very much in hindsight of the finale.

I also like the way that this episode gets more into ‘why the Library’. Libraries have lots of different roles, and it’s good to get into that. They aren’t all doing the same thing.

One of the things we talked about a lot in several of my classes in library school is why that matters. A public library, that’s focusing on providing access to its materials by a large and diverse community is going to have different policies than an academic library, and definitely different than an archive with unique and delicate materials.

Clearly, in the mythos here, this Library has a particular role – storing items with high amounts of magic, so that they won’t be misused (one goal) but also so they can be studied (as Jenkins does). That’s not a common kind of library, but it’s not at all unheard of.

And as we see here with the different representatives at the Conclave (and later in the series) there are more than just ordinary humans involved in the world, too (with at least some access to the library: they all manage to show up at the Annex, after all!)

And that’s not inappropriate, you know?

Footnotes: 

Yellowstone caldera. Earthquakes in China. Earthquakes in Taiwan. Earthquakes in Japan.

Old Slavic (Presumably Old Church Slavic). Historical earthquakes (I’m not seeing anything for 1643 in my searches?) The Ahwahneechee lived in the Yosemite area.

Dragons. As expanded on in this episode, Eastern (China, Japan, Korea ) dragons and Western (European) dragons have rather different sorts of myths associated with them. (The book Flynn pulls out appears to be maybe in German?)

East Coast/West Coast hip hop rivalry. Eric B. and Rakim.

Drake comes from the Greek, and means dragon (in one etymology)

Fei Lung also transliterated as ‘feilong’. Wikipedia says: “The proper name Feilong applies to people, fictional characters, places, martial art techniques, military weapons, and a pterosaur.” but in this case, it’s flying dragons. Consigliere (which has an interesting history).

Pearls. (Book rec: Victoria Finlay’s Jewels: A Secret History)  Pearl of Zhou.

1906 was, of course, the great San Francisco earthquake.

Colloseum. Trevi Fountain. St. Peter’s Square. Papal regalia (it’s the white zucchetto that should make you say ‘That is the Pope’, really.) Russ Meyer movies.

Fibonacci sequence. Roman concrete. Ichiboku style – the box is carved from a single piece of wood.

Lorenzo Museum and the artist (I’m not sure I trust the captioning here) do not appear to real, but I might be wrong.

Back at the library: 

Jinn. (A story referring to bronze and jinn.)

Fae. (Book rec: a lot of our idea of what fairies are like is exceedingly Victorian. The book Strange and Secret People: Fairies and Victorian Consciousness by Carole G. Silver goes into why that is.)

Iron Kingdom (fairly clearly something Scottish. Iron in folklore and Scottish mythology.)

Rome: 

I might have squealed with joy when the dragon used classical pronunciation for his Latin, not the ecclesiastical. (More variations) The Latin is roughly “This ought not to  be, small (one).” and “We did not steal the pearl , Librarian.”

Apple of discord. The goddess Eris.

Library:

World Crime League (the John Rogers post for this episode has more about some of the derivations.)

Son of Ban.

Cassandra and the apple: 

The painting in the background in the workshop is Orazio Gentileschi’s The Lute Player. Force ratios. (Mass. Inertia. Velocity.) Saphenous nerve cluster. Carotid artery.

Power stations in Italy (the ones in Rome, sort on the ‘province’ column and look for RM)

Conclave:

1123. Wold Newton.

Power station: 

The population of Europe depends on how you define Europe, but the population of the European Union is approximately 731 million. (So 680,000 is about .1 percent of the population in the area. But still a lot of people.)

Irrational numbersPi. Euler’s number (e). Recursive loops.

Library: 

Jane Addams. Croquet. (And here we get the first data so far that Jenkins is rather older than he looks).

Pol Pot. Nero. (Book and TV rec: I Claudius by Robert Graves and the BBC respectively.)

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2 comments to The Librarians and the Apple of Discord

Hi, I’m Jen

Librarian, infovore, and general geek, likely to write comments about books, link collections, and other thoughts related to how we find, use, and take joy in information.

I'm the Research Librarian at the Perkins School for the Blind

More about my job and a day in the life

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