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Well of Lost Thoughts

cwjat finished up The Eyre Affair while Smith Katie was still Lost in a Good Book. It was just a matter of time before conversation among my houseguests turned to The Well of Lost Plots.

We knew the phrase with certainty - it came from the "Well of Lost Souls". But on further reflection, we had no idea where that phrase, in turn, came from. It sounds Dantesque - but does it really have that kind of origin?

Jstor and Bartlett's came up empty. I trawled through all the limited numbers of websearch results - including Quake levels and a motley variety of poetry - but no mention was earlier than Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, wherein the Well of Lost Souls is a pit of snakes.

So... is that the earliest mention of the phrase? Does it have some other etymology? Enquiring Jasper Fforde readers want to know.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 15th, 2005 12:41 pm (UTC)
I just started The Eyre Affair. I am liking it so far.
Jun. 16th, 2005 03:03 am (UTC)
I am deeply fond of that book. Not everyone I know liked reading it - but if you've read at least a decent sampling of the books referenced within it, it's unabashed literary/alternate-universe fun!
Jun. 15th, 2005 01:52 pm (UTC)
Not sure where the term comes from but there are definitely many references to Dante in the book.
I could not put down The Eyre Affair and Lost in a Good Book, and probably finished them both in less than a week.
Meanwhile, I have been struggling to plod through Well of Lost Plots for at least a month now. It is much slower going...
Jun. 16th, 2005 03:04 am (UTC)
Funny... I was least satisfied by LiaGB - but I think I probably read them all rather quickly. I haven't reread them in a while, actually...
Jun. 15th, 2005 06:31 pm (UTC)
Not a clue, sorry.
Jun. 16th, 2005 03:04 am (UTC)
Thanks anyways!
Jun. 16th, 2005 06:46 pm (UTC)
I'm reading a book on Muslim death and burial and I just found a reference to the Well of Souls. This is in Jerusalem, beneath the Temple Mount. I just don't know where the Well of Lost Souls is.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )