Deus Irae is a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel by American authors Philip K. Dick and Roger Zelazny. It was published in 1976. Deus irae, meaning God of Wrath in Latin, is a play on Dies Irae, meaning Day of Wrath or Judgment Day. This novel is based on Dick's short story "The Great C."
Dick began the book but realized he did not know enough about Christianity to finish it. He asked Ted White to collaborate on it with him, but after reviewing the manuscript White never got started. Zelazny discovered the manuscript in White's home in early 1968, read it, then contacted Dick and agreed to work on it with him. Work proceeded sporadically over several years as each author forgot about it in turn (and Zelazny's cat took the opportunity to urinate on the original manuscript). But they finished it quickly in the spring of 1975 when the publisher demanded the manuscript or repayment of the advance paid to Dick. The editor discovered Zelazny had sent photocopies of some pages and demanded the originals as per Doubleday's policy; much to Zelazny's chagrin, he had to send in the urine-stained pages and he always wondered what the editor made of them.
Cover of first edition (hardcover)
|Author||Philip K. Dick and Roger Zelazny|
|Cover artist||John Cayea|
|Media type||Print (hardback & paperback)|
|LC Class||PZ4.D547 De PS3554.I3|
After 1982, the world experienced a devastating nuclear war. Fallout and radiation has caused widespread mutations to human and animal populations alike. Akin to gnosticism, there is a new messianic religion. The members of this religion, known as the Servants of Wrath or SOWs, worship the creator and detonator of the war's ultimate weapon, Carleton Lufteufel (from the German words "Luft," meaning "air," and "Teufel," meaning "Devil"), ex-chairman of the Energy Research and Development Agency of the United States of America - ERDA/USA.
In Charlottesville, Utah, there are ample debates between the Servants of Wrath and the diminishing congregations of Christians left in existence.
The Servants of Wrath faith is based on an "anger-driven" traditional perception of godhood, compared to Christian survivors, and it is from this that the book derives its name- deus irae, Latin for "God of Wrath". Tibor McMasters is an armless, legless cyborg phocomelus artist who has been commissioned to paint a mural of Lufteufel, though nobody knows where Lufteufel lives, or what he looks like.
The Servants of Wrath leadership ask McMasters to find Lufteufel and paint his mural. En route, we learn about the absence of widespread national communications systems after the widespread destruction of nuclear warfare. McMasters and other seekers encounter mutant lizards, birds and insects who have evolved sentience, as well as the "Big C", a decaying artificial intelligence which also survived the war, and consumes humans for their trace elements to sustain its survival.
While trying to remove the shrapnel from his forehead Lufteufel loses consciousness from loss of blood, at which point his intellectually challenged "daughter", Alice, tries to remove some of the blood with a shirt leaving a bloody imprint. Alice keeps the shirt as it is the only remaining likeness of his face, leaving her with the only true shroud of the God of Wrath, equivalent to Catholic legends about Saint Veronica and the Shroud of Turin.
After Lufteufel, going under the name of Jack Schuld, kills a dog that McMasters has acquired, McMasters murders Lufteufel without realising his identity. Alice is later visited by Lufteufel's "spirit" after his death. He does not speak, but Alice sees that his spirit is finally at peace after he helps Alice by "lifting the fog in her brain", removing her disability. She is not the only human to experience a theophany related to Lufteufel's passing, however, for another survivor has a vision of a "Palm Tree Garden" equivalent to the Judaeo-Christian Garden of Eden. This implies that Lufteufel may have been a gnostic demiurge, an evil earthbound deity which believes itself omnipotent, but whose abilities are constricted compared to "higher levels" of divinity.
However, McMasters has no knowledge of Lufteufel's death or related alleged visions related to his death. He is tricked by his (Christian) companion Pete into using an elderly dying alcoholic vagrant for the likeness of Lufteufel for the commissioned church mural, which is prominently featured in leading Servants of Wrath institutions. The mural's survival is a tacit argument that religious belief is often based on mythological accretions, which may not be valid interpretations of decisive events in the history of that faith.
"Autofac" is a 1955 science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick that features one of the earliest treatments of self-replicating machines (and Dick's second, after his 1953 short story Second Variety). It appeared originally in Galaxy Science Fiction of November 1955, and was reprinted in several collections, including The Variable Man published in 1957, and Robots, Androids, and Mechanical Oddities published in 1984.
The story was adapted by Travis Beacham for an episode of the 2017 TV series, Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams.Fair Game (short story)
"Fair Game" is a science fiction short story written by Philip K. Dick in 1953 and first published in 1959 in If Magazine. The story was re-published in the third collected volume of Dick's short stories, The Father-thing in 1987.Human Is
"Human Is" is a science fiction short story by Philip K. Dick. It was first published in Startling Stories, Winter 1955. The plot centers on the crisis facing a woman whose cold and emotionally abusive husband returns from a survey mission to the dying planet Rexor IV, changed for the better—his psyche was replaced by a Rexorian, glad to have escaped the confines of its dying planet.
The story was adapted by Jessica Mecklenburg for an episode of the 2017 TV series, Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams.I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon
"I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon" is a short story by American writer Philip K. Dick. The short story was first published in Playboy in December 1980, under the title "Frozen Journey".If There Were No Benny Cemoli
"If There Were No Benny Cemoli" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick, first published in the December, 1963 issue of Galaxy magazine with illustration by Lutjens."The Proxmen rebuilding war-torn Earth want to prosecute its leaders for war crimes. Benny Cemoli would be the biggest catch of all, if they could just find him. -- Steven Owen GoderskyMary and the Giant
Mary and the Giant is an early, non-science fiction novel written by Philip K. Dick in the years between 1953 and 1955, but not published until 1987.Nick and the Glimmung
Nick and the Glimmung is a children's science fiction novel originally written by American author Philip K. Dick in 1966. It was first published by Gollancz in 1988. It is set on "Plowman's Planet" (Sirius Five), in the same continuity as his adult science fiction novel Galactic Pot-Healer.Novelty Act
"Novelty Act" is a short story by Philip K. Dick. It involves a dystopian future in which the characters' lives are based on entertaining the First Lady of the United States with "novelty acts".Planet for Transients
"Planet for Transients" is a 1953 science fiction short story by Philip K. Dick. The story was originally published in the October–November 1953 issue of Fantastic Universe. The story also appears in We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (The Collected Short Stories of Philip K. Dick, Vol. 2) (formerly entitled Second Variety). The author's original title for the story was "The Itinerants".
Elements of this story appear in the novel Deus Irae, written by Dick and Roger Zelazny.Strange Eden
"Strange Eden" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick. It was first published in Imagination magazine, December 1954.The Cookie Lady (short story)
"The Cookie Lady" is a horror short story by American writer Philip K. Dick. It was originally published in the June 1953 issue of the magazine Fantasy Fiction.The Days of Perky Pat
"The Days of Perky Pat" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick, first published in 1963 in Amazing magazine.The Electric Ant
"The Electric Ant" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick. It was first published in Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine in October 1969.The Great C
"The Great C" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick. It was first published in 1953 in Cosmos Science Fiction and later in The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick, and parts of the work along with Planet for Transients were later used in the full-length novel Deus Irae. It has since been republished several times, including in Beyond Lies the Wub in 1988.The Pre-persons
"The Pre-persons" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick. It was first published in Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine, October 1974.
The story was a pro-life response to Roe v. Wade. Dick imagines a future where the United States Congress has decided that abortion is legal until the soul enters the body. The specific instant is defined by the administration, at present the moment a person has the ability to perform simple algebraic calculations (around the age of 12).
The main protester — a former Stanford mathematics major — demands to be taken to the abortion center, since he claims to have forgotten all his algebra.The Variable Man (collection)
The Variable Man is a collection of science fiction stories by American writer Philip K. Dick. It was first published by Ace Books in 1957. The stories had originally appeared in the magazines Space Science Fiction, Fantastic Universe and Galaxy Science FictionVintage PKD
Vintage PKD is a collection of science fiction stories, novel excerpts and non-fiction by Philip K. Dick. It was first published by Vintage Books in 2006.War Veteran
"War Veteran" is a science fiction short story by Philip K. Dick. It was first published in If magazine in March 1955.Waterspider
"Waterspider" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick, first published in the January 1964 edition of If magazine.Dick's story "Waterspider" features Poul Anderson as one of the main characters. The author refers to himself and his stories "The Variable Man" and "The Defenders", and mentions several other science fiction writers of the period, including Murray Leinster, A. E. van Vogt, Margaret St. Clair, Jack Vance, and Isaac Asimov.