ENCYCLOPEDIA GALACTICA Edition 428193 - Earth English
A Language English1 term representing a heavily colonized planetary body in close proximity to a civilization's birth world. Accessible through level two (2) space travel technology,2 colonization begins early into a civilization's space flight era. Initial utilization is limited to basic scientific inquiry and the staging of extended space expeditions. Once a technological presence is established, exploitation of local resources is simplified promoting increased membership presence. Over several generations the surface and sub-surface is developed into habitability by the introduction of life supporting superstructures followed by progressive planetary engineering3. A teressëa body is often the largest natural satellite orbiting an inhabited planet. Wrongfully classified as 'planetoids', they have no connection to bodies created by Civilization Gardener.4
Planets which give rise to a technical civilization are orbited by a large natural satellite or twin planet. The nurturing of a biosphere to the level of civilization requires long term stability and reliable energy distribution. The gravitational influence of such a moon provides two key benefits. Deflection of meteors whose impact could disrupt the biosphere and set back evolutionary development through mass extinction. Creation of a planetary surface rhythm, such as tides, which moves energy and material around the planet.5 Civilizations Sagittarius White and Phoenix Orange are the only known exceptions to this trend. As such, most civilizations develop a teressëa as a natural consequence of their space flight era.
An arch example of teressëa is the primary satellite of Civilization Ara (EGO 0601-00000000112). Colonization began within the first generation of space flight, initially through a technological presence, then living members by the second generation. After fifty-one (51) generations of their kind, the barren moon was transformed into a sister biosphere of their birth world (EGO 0601-00000000109). Ara was more greatly driven to expand their environment as the planet's surface has no large habitable land masses and is covered by a band of forty-seven (47) mini-continents.6 Without expansion, population growth would become a threat to social cohesion even within their carefully managed, dichotomous societies.7 Ara now employs planetary engineering skills on suitable bodies within their sphere of influence.8 Civilization Ara is regarded as second only to Civilization Gardener in such accomplishments.
The word 'teressëa' is a contraction of the fictional place name 'Tol Eressëa'. In the mythology of 'The Silmarillian'9 by 20th century author J.R.R. Tolkien,10 Tol Eressëa is an island haven for the elvish Teleri peoples. This land mass, originally part of the eastern continent Middle Earth, was transported west by the godlike Ainur to within sight of Valinor - home of the Ainur. Later both Tol Eressëa and Valinor were removed from the 'circles of the world' and reachable only through the 'straight path' to the heavens. In the fictional Teleri language Tol Eressëa means 'Lonely Island'.
EGO: Encyclopedia Galactica Object
1Civilization Humanity: Linguistic Types
2Space Flight Technologies: Classifications
3Definition: 'Planetary Engineering'
4Civilization Gardener: History, Unique Technological Adaptations
5Not as requisite for Electromotive Ecologies
6Civilization Ara: Birth World Atlas
7Civilization Ara: History, Social Order
8 Definition: 'Sphere of Influence'
9Civilization Humanity: Literature
10Civilization Humanity: Members of Note
Jan 9, 2013 2:07:28 amby myrrhluz Homepage »
As always, reading your story made me wish I could investigate further in the Encyclopedia Galactica. I'd like to learn more of the Ara and their forty-seven mini-continents. I've always loved maps. It would be fun to explore geopolitical maps of another world. If Civilization Ara is second only to Civilization Gardener in planetary engineering skills they would be very fascinating to look up in many aspects. In 51 generations, there would be wonderful stories of exploration and discovery, settlement and transformation, and all the difficulties and achievements along the way. Also I would use the encyclopedia to refresh my memory. Have you mention 'Phoenix Orange' before?
I read "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress" 40 odd years ago. I can't say I remember a lot of the story, but I do remember the thrill of thinking about living on another world, a world where the daily realities that we take for granted, like gravity, were different. How long would it take for the change to become second nature, background noise that isn't thought about.
I love the use of "The Silmarillian" in the naming of the term 'Teressëa' I wonder what stories would be behind the naming of this term by other Civilizations.
Your excellent narrative sent my mind wandering in various directions, like always. I love the image too. An ocean world and her engineered sister world. Beautiful details, colors, and light. Excellent work!