Anathem Wiki

This is a page for the rite celebrated by the avout of a concent. For the novel by Neal Stephenson, see Anathem.

The anathem is an aut by which one of the avout of a concent can be expelled, or "thrown back", to the Saecular world, as punishment for crimes or violation of the rules of his or her math. In most concents, it is very rarely celebrated. Avout who have been anathematized are sometimes called feral.

The aut of anathem begins with a Convocation, or assemblage of the avout of a concent. The avout are called by the ringing of a particular pattern of the Mynster bells. This is followed by the intoning of the chant that signifies the anathem aut. Then, the celebrant reads some ancient writings about the Discipline and how it must be enforced, followed by the name of the person to be anathematized. The name is said without the "fraa" or "suur" title, because at that moment, the (former) avout ceases to be a fraa or suur. The anathemetized passes through the screen of his math, relinquishes his or her sphere, and discards the bolt and chord. He or she remains naked while the avout of the math sing a wrathful song to anathametize the rejected one, who then exits the math through the Day Gate. Passing out of the chancel, he or she is then provided with some rudimentary clothing or a blanket. The anathemetized fraa or suur leaves the concent forever.

The remainder of the aut is a reaffirmation of the vows by the remaining avout, sort of a rededication to the Discipline. Everyone in the concent is expected to attend the aut of anathem, even those on tasks otherwise not to be interrupted.

Dictionary Entry[]

1. In Proto-Orth, a poetic or musical invocation of Our Mother Hylaea, which since the time of Adrakhones has been the climax of the daily liturgy (hence the Fluccish word Anthem meaning a song of great emotional resonance, esp. one that inspires listeners to sing along).

Note: this sense is archaic, and used only in a ritual context where it is unlikely to be confused with the much more commonly used sense.

2. In New Orth, an aut by which an incorrigible fraa or suur is ejected from the math and his or her work sequestered (hence the Fluccish word Anathema meaning intolerable statements or ideas). See Throwback.
The Dictionary, 4th Edition, A.R. 3000