The 43 Antarean Dynasties
by Mike Resnick
• Audio Length: 40 minutes
The 43 Antarean Dynasties is a Hugo winning science fiction short story by Mike Resnick. It is about a proud tour guide showing three humans the remains of his planet’s once great culture.
The 43 Antarean Dynasties is about Hermes, an Antarean tour guide who shows a family of three visiting humans around the capital city of his home planet. The Antareans are an ancient and highly dignified race and are extremely proud of their glorious history. As Hermes escorts the three visitors around, he is constantly tried not only by their insensitive actions, but by his own feelings of pride in his culture, race and history.
A beautifully descriptive and wonderfully well written story, The 43 Antarean Dynasties is a great read for any lover of science fiction, but it is a definite must for people who love to travel and learn about other cultures.
The 43 Antarean Dynasties won the 1998 Hugo Award for Best Short Story.
To thank the Maker Of All Things for the birth of his first male offspring, the Emperor Maloth IV ordered his architects to build a temple that would forever dwarf all other buildings on the planet. It was to be made entirely of crystal, and the spire- covered roof, which looked like a million glistening spear-points aimed at the sun, would be supported by 217 columns, to honor his 217 forebears. When struck, each column would sound a musical note that could be heard for kilometers, calling the faithful to prayer.
The structure would be known as the Temple of the Honored Sun, for his heir had been born exactly at midday, when the sun was highest in the sky. The temple took 27 Standard years to complete, and although races from all across the galaxy would come to Antares III to marvel at it, Maloth further decreed that no aliens or non-believers would ever be allowed to enter it and desecrate its sacred corridors with their presence…
Where you can find The 43 Antarean Dynasties:
• The 43 Antarean Dynasties originally appeared in the December 1997 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction.
• There is a free version online at EscapePod.org, but it is an audio file in mp3 format. You can stream it through your browser, or download and listen to it separately. The actual story is only about 40 minutes long, but the audio file contains some other things too. (If you download it you can jump right to the beginning of the story at time index 3:37)
• The 43 Antarean Dynasties has been collected in Mike Resnick’s book New Dreams for Old.
• You can also download an electronic version from FictionWise or ElectricStory for about $1. These versions come in multiple eBook formats with DRM.
Did you know that Mike Resnick is now the leading award winner for short fiction among all science fiction writers, living or dead? Yep, you can read all about him on his web page.
If you like this story you may also like Old MacDonald Had A Farm by Mike Resnick.