The identical twins Ladies Cora and Clarice aren’t just lookalikes, but also one another’s echo chambers. They live in their own quarters of the rambling pile of Gormenghast, driving themselves round the bend with thirst for ‘power’ and its resulting resentments. They are sitting targets for manipulation to which they both succumb with equal ease.
See also the machinations of their thinking and their ruminations upon the important topic of roofs. And another simile for blankness of gaze.
Here they suffer from attention deficit disorder.
‘But both the Doctor and his sister found that the Ladies Cora and Clarice had not been paying the slightest attention but had been staring at Steerpike more in the manner of a wall staring at a man than a man staring at a wall.’
See also our bestellar review of this book, with its lavishly illustrated quote-mosaic, packed with fine phrasing and fresh metaphors.
Source: Mervyn Peake, Titus Groan, introduction by Anthony Burgess (London: Vintage Books, 1998), p. 199
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