Mandrakes

by Henry Wessells

    Mandrakes appear throughout Davidson's writings, from the carefully restrained mandrake Vergil employs to find a favorable wind on the sea voyage to Cyprus in The Phoenix and The Mirror, to his definitive essay "Who Makes the Mandrakes?" in Adventures in Unhistory. Some digressions relating to this unusual plant follow.
    As serendipity is itself a phenomenon which interested Avram Davidson, I include a section of an article which came across my desk at work when I was reading Adventures in Unhistory for the first time (shortly after Davidson's death in May 1993).

    From "Zoroastrianism : Location and Time of Its Origins"
    by J.N. Khlopin, Iranica Antiqua 27 (1992), pages 104-105:

    More recently, I came across this interesting passage:     Readers of "Who Makes the Mandrakes?" will note that many allusions and sources in Biddle's brief discussion parallel those of Davidson four decades later.

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