Hagbard Celine

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Freeman Hagbard Celine, H.M., S.H. is a central protagonist in the Illuminatus trilogy of books by Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson, named after the legendary Viking hero Hagbard who died for love. In the Schrödinger's Cat trilogy, the sequel to Illuminatus!, it is stated that 'Hagbard Celine' is a pseudonym, and his legal name is 'Howard Crane'. However, the trilogy passes through many very different universes.



Hagbard has parallels to Jules Verne's character, Captain Nemo. Both are genius captains aboard a fantastic submarine. Both are rogues who have mostly broken off from society, yet help the oppressed. Some have even theorized that Hagbard Celine is, in fact, Captain Nemo,[2] but that seems physically impossible, or at least very unlikely, as Verne's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea is set in the second half of the nineteenth century, which would make Hagbard Celine, if the same character and person as Nemo, over a hundred years old. He is also comparable to a degree to Ragnar Danneskjold, a libertarian pirate in the Ayn Rand novel Atlas Shrugged, which receives several mentions in the chronicles. His name can be seen as an homage both to Rand's hero and to Robert Heinlein's character Mike in the novel The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, a self-aware computer network that engineers a revolution in a lunar penal colony using the alias Adam Selene.[original research?] Like Danneskjold, Hagbard participates in the black market, exploiting and resisting governments, and both characters have Norwegian roots.

Hagbard is a notorious prankster and liar (telling one character not to trust anyone with the initials H.C.). This character trait is displayed throughout Illuminatus!, Celine's tends give misinformation about himself and his intentions. Among information that may or may not be true is that he is actually one of the leaders of the Illuminati, and that he faked an actress' death (strongly implied to be Marilyn Monroe[clarification needed]) in order to train her into becoming an embodiment of the goddess Eris. Celine subsequently fell in love with the woman and announces his intention to marry her during the trilogy.

A Discordian anarchist, he fights the Illuminati from a golden submarine, the Leif Ericson[1]. The Leif Ericson was supposedly designed and built by himself, stolen from the United States Navy, or a gift from the Mafia. Despite its size, the equivalent of five city blocks long with a three story high conning tower, it has so far remained undetected.

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