[PnP] A Question For Anyone Who Might Know (Richard Snider, perhaps???)

Phineas Cromwell phineascromwell at gmail.com
Tue Sep 29 23:06:20 CEST 2009

Actually its a couple of questions:

First, is the e-mail listed for Richard Snider still his real, active
e-mail? Over the past year, I've tried several times to ask him a question,
but he is either unwilling or unable to respond. After so long a time, I am
quite disappointed, for whatever the reason.  A couple of weeks ago, I again
tried, and here is the text:

['Hello. I belong to the P&P Players List, and I tried to contact you a
couple times over the past year regarding personal research on a term that I
encountered in The Creature Book. This term is very elusive, and in the
course of hunting down its meaning I have encountered nothing but scarcity
and contention as to its origin or even its validity as an actual word.
The word is akhkharu. I tried to contact the University Of PA's program that
is compiling a Sumerian dictionary, but their funding was cut off and I have
received no response. Some bloggers insist that the word is a fake entry in
some concocted pseudo-mythology that tries to depict Lovecraft's
Necronomicon as an actual historical grimoire. There is an Akhkhazu entry in
Wikipedia, but it is vague and apparently off the mark (although it does
make me wonder if the term akhkharu is technically more Akkadic than
Now, I have encountered the term in a book entitled Lectures On The Origin
And Growth Of Religion, which dates from the later 1800s, but it doesnt seem
to offer any description or etymology.
I was wondering if you could help me with this. Could you tell me your
sources for the term? I read that you studied archaeology for a time, and
have a background in folklore & myth (unless I am mistaken).

Please help me with this question. The elusiveness of this word is very odd
to me.']

Well, thats it. Nobody, I mean NOBODY knows about this word, even though it
is used by many people. At least, I'm having a bitch of a time researching
it. You guys are probably wondering WHY I am so determined to research this
thing. Its because, simply, thats what I do. I'm involved with fantasy on
the world-building level, and I'm an aspiring writer. I research
history/mythology/religion/the occult, as time and accessibility of the
'deeper sources' permits.

Usually, I can break the defenses of a reluctant term apart. One example of
Mr. Snider's usage that was a little difficult briefly was the deity
Choronzon (the source of that was in an occult document penned by the
Elizabethan court mage/philosopher Dr. John Dee, and it was appropriated
later by Aleister Crowley).

I have a fellow fantasist-enthusiast, and we go on for hours and hours about
the minutiae of the 'deep' fantasy tradition. (We assume made up nicknames,
styled after classic-era authors, in the manner that the members of SAGA
did; that explains the 'Phineas Cromwell' thing).

To sum up, I have a deeper angle of interest in these things. And thats
basically why P&P is one of my FRPGs of choice. I just wish Mr. Snider was
responsive to that.

I hope, if there's a chance, that a response (if any) to this post will
yield some help. I figure my next step is to try to contact as many
Professors of the Sumerian/Akkadian language/mythology as I can.

Any help (or response) would be GREATLY appreciated.
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