Friday, April 14, 2006

Simoun -- glossary of terms

Simoun is one of my favorite shows of the new season. The backgrounds, character design, mecha and music are all outstanding. As is most of the voice-acting, particularly that of Takahashi Rieko as the red-haired Neviriru. And the presence of Takahashi Mikako, Toyoguchi Megumi, Koshimizu Ami and Mamiko Noto (in two roles) doesn't hurt. The story, animation, and acting work together to make the characters and their emotions very effective, at least for me.

One thing stopping some people from enjoying the show is the unusual world it's set in and the special terminology that fills the dialogue. There is now a glossary of the terminology on the official site. Here is a translation of what's there so far, along with a short note about the world:

Two-seated aircraft of the nation of Simulacrum. Using the power of the Helical Moutoris engine passed down from ancient times in the temple of the theocracy of Simulacrum, they fly with great ease and freedom.

Shimire Simoun (abbr. Shimire)
Training craft for Simoun pilots. There are one- and two-seated versions.

Helical Moutoris
A system passed down from ancient times for using the power of the Tempus Patium, which spreads a strange radiation over Simulacrum.

The deity worshipped by the faithful in Simulacrum. The Palace of the Tempus Patium holds the “Spring” which is the centre of religious worship in Simulacrum.

The pilot, who occupies the front seat of a Simoun.

The navigator, who occupies the rear seat of a Simoun. Also controls weapons.

The two-person team that (wo)mans a Simoun

Ri Maajon
The patterns drawn by the flight of a Simoun. Whole patterns and types of lines are both aspects of Ri Maajon. There are several hundred different patterns, but they can be combined in countless ways. They have been passed down from ancient times, but the meaning of many of them has been forgotten.

Suigyoku Ri Maajon [Emerald Ri Maajon]
The legend is that Sibylla who succeed in creating this Ri Maajon serve at the side of the Tempus Patium. [This is called the Jade Ri Maajon in the fansub.]

To practice Ri Maajon by wearing implements on the legs that show the patterns formed as you move. All the Sibylla like doing Maaju.

Maaju Pool
A big columnar space built through the bottom of the Prima ship [the main ship, where the Sibylla live].

Corps Tempest
The corps led by Neviriru, and of which Aaeru and the others are members.

Simoun Sibylla
The priestesses who ride the Simoun.

Sibylla Aurea
The top Simoun Sibylla: the “Golden Priestess.”

The leader of a corps.

Words in the glossary are transliterated directly from the Japanese on the official site, except for a few which I have converted into their English/Latin originals: Helical, Simulacrum, Corps, Pool, Tempest, Regina ("queen" in Latin), Auriga ("charioteer" in Latin), Sibylla. Sagitta (sajitta, the navigator and weapons officer of a Simoun) means "arrow" in Latin. Simoun is pronounced "shimoon" in Japanese.

The world is called Taikuuriku ("Sky Land"). There are two nations: the theocratic Simulacrum, and the Craftsman Nation overseas. The industrial Craftsman Nation keeps invading Simulacrum to try to gain the secret of the Simoun, which fly so much better than anything they can build.

On this world, at least in Simulacrum and probably elsewhere, people are all born female. At 17 Simulacrans wade into the holy pool, which turns them into adults and changes some of them into males. The pilots at least, and probably everyone, get to choose which sex they want to become. In Simulacrum, there are no males under 17 years old.


Matrim said...

Now that certainly will help me understand better this series which started so promising. Nice job.

Hung said...

Ah, good to know! That crazy jargon was really turning me off to the show. Thought the whole girl-girl kisses were turning me back on...

I just wish they'd explain this stuff in-show. Thanks for the definitions, though.

Mangaminx said...

Thanks a lot for this list of terms! The series has a lot and it's handy to have a reference to whats what as it can certainly be a bit overwhelming. Very useful post!

Yui from okinawa said...

April 14, I make and Upload "Simoun" mecha and Glossary page!

An Forum menber noticed your blog existance!

Your glossary are good, too.

I estimatimate this new 26 epiosode series!

chrno said...

Thank you for putting the time and effort into the glossary. Now this makes understanding the show much better. I'll admit there is more foreign loan words than I'd care to imagine. One thing came to mind about the whole "sex" change deal. Some of the women can become male when they reach 17. Considering that character 'Wapourif', if this character had a sex change to become male, why does he still have breasts? I know this might not be covered but Interesting to note that while most have underwent a full transiton some haven't fully evolved to that state.