Heavens to Mergatroid – Planetary Themes in Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia


Michael Ward’s Planet Narnia addresses the problem of finding some explanatory schema behind the seven somewhat disparate tales of C. S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia.  Close Lewis friend and confidante J.R.R. Tolkien, (sub-) creator of Middle Earth, home to The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings epic fantasies, criticized them for their lack of a consistent literary or thematic background.  Numerous attempts have since been made to find a hidden theme linking the stories, with Ward citing  the following attempts …

The Seven Planets of Significance in Medieval Thought; Ward’s Dissertation Planet Narnia, and the more-readable-version-for-mortals Narnia Code

relating them to the seven Catholic sacraments, to the seven classical and theological virtues, and to the seven vices; finding in them a structure highlighting key events of world history, the process of redemption, ironically enough Tolkien’s Middle Earth (as Tolkien was highly critical of overt symbolism and Lewis’s Chronicles),  Shakespeare, Spenser’s Faerie Queene, or simply a world fashioned to just reflect all the diverse things Lewis dreamed up.

But, as Michael Ward was mulling over Lewis’s writings in the midst of his dissertation work at Oxford University, Lewis’s poem The Planets stuck in his mind, at one point noticing the similarities between the poem’s narrative and the stories in the beloved Narniad:

Of wrath ended
And woes mended, of winter passed
And guilt forgiven, and good fortune
Jove is master; and of jocund revel,
Laughter of ladies. The lion-hearted …

The story of The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe (LWW) came to mind, with Aslan’s atoning sacrifice to mend woes, and forgive the guilt of Edmund’s treachery.  Jupiter, the King of Planets, ‘By Jove!” (as Ward notes, the image of a jovial, jubilant king – Jupiter the largest and hence “King of Planets” – make sense of the connection between Jupiter and LWW) – and By Jove! indeed, a dissertation idea was born.

Sean Connery’s Reprise of Rudyard Kipling’s 1888 The Man Who Would be King, and KIng Arthur, to a lesser extent, in the Richard Gere-marred First Knight, perhaps best embody for the modern era the figure of a Jovial King Figure. Robin Williams as The Fisher King is less relevant, but will show up in a Modern Culture column on TS Eliot

Separated at Birth? Robin Williams, Nobel Laureate TS ELiot, The Incredible Mr. Limpet

Lewis’s entire poem, The Planets can be found at both this compendium (good word, “eh?” my Canadian friends) of Lewis poems – www.best-poems.net/c_s_lewis/index.html as well as at this fine site – https://apilgriminnarnia.com/2013/05/27/poem-the-planets/

(but, using some of their fine images, we continue, just in case anyone is still reading …)

The theme developed by Ward instead draws more systematically, or organically, on Lewis’s grounding in classical literature and the medieval worldview, as reflected in his position of Professor of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at both Cambridge and Oxford Universities during his career.  The special meaning afforded by a consideration of the planets can be found explicitly in Lewis’s other writings.  In The Discarded Image, Lewis describes the planets as “at every moment they approximate to Him in the fullest nature of which their nature is capable…the picture is nothing if not religious.”1 Elsewhere, Lewis characterizes the semantic possibilities of the planets with “the character of the planets, as conceived by medieval astrology, seem to me to have a permanent value as spiritual symbols … specially worthwhile in our own generation.”2 Clues from Lewis’s poem The Planets corresponding closely to particular developments in various stories in The Chronicles of Narnia (CN) helped precipitate Ward’s study.


The proposition of Ward’s Planet Narnia is in fact a ‘threefold one’ (though not approaching the mysterious status of the Trinity): the occasion for Lewis writing the Chronicles, the hunt for an underlying thematic unity, and the reason for the massive popular embrace of the stories.  While the compositional theme of an underlying unity is the main part of Ward’s argument, a brief consideration of the other two considerations will elucidate the compositional thesis.  The occasion for the writing of the Chronicles is presented as an opportunity for an imaginative recourse by Lewis to the somewhat chagrining pruning of his presentation of theistic arguments from his recently written Miracles in 1948 at the Oxford Socratic Club at the hands of philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe.  Ward qualifies these accounts, noting that the devout Catholic Anscombe had merely found some inconsistencies that gave Lewis some pause rather than providing any sort of stinging refutation.  Nevertheless, the recourse for Lewis to continue his argument, as it were, in the more imaginative medium of fantasy literature was suggested in some sense to Lewis at this point apparently, for his work on the Chronicles became his next writing project.

Lewis’s imaginative packaging of his arguments invites a consideration of his view on the roles of reasoned argumentation and imaginative presentation (or embodiment) of truth, or of the Christian truth in particular.  This will in fact help explain the third part of Ward’s argument: why the Chronicles were so popularly well received.  The unpacking of Lewis’s phrase “the great disadvantage under which the Christian apologist labors” can fully explain Lewis’s views. Ward explains that rational assent as well as imaginative embrace of a truth are necessary and complementary activities to fuel the will to choose the Christian faith.3 While the intellect serves as an organ of truth, the imagination, such as is fueled by stories, mythic structures and appeal to the emotions, serves as an organ of meaning.  The problem the apologist faces in a lecture hall is that he is limited to presenting just the rational argument, as the living embrace of the imaginative aspect of the life of faith is not something present in the audience, or hence, the auditorium.  Hearkening to imaginative presentations of course is helpful, though their power is something hinted at more than lived out in such a setting.

Lewis’s Poems are also found in book version as Poems; Narrative Poems contains Lewis’s 90 page thriller Dymer, published under the pseudonym Clive Hamilton, before Lewis came to the Christian faith (originally a prose story, Medea and Dymer) . Of the Rainbows and Unicorn imagery, an influence no doubt from Chesterton – see Chesterton’s “Ethics of Elfland” essay in his 1908 Orthodoxy: The Romance of Faith

spirits bondage

Yet another collection of Lewis’s poems, pre-Christian years (1919-1921)

At this point, I will “cut to the chase” and give the insights into various books of The Chronicles of Narnia. Rest assured, however, that some dry intellectual kindling material lies in wait on the other side of this, should the embers of curiosity still glow …

The case for the imaginative approach has hereby lapsed, ironically enough, into abstraction, so a few examples of the powerful and planetarily appropriate imagery in The Chronicles of Narnia are in order, though given without effort at citation.

By Jove! – Jupiter the King of Planets

As the key archetype of the series is Aslan, his kingly nature is explicitly described only in The Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe (LWW), and the coronation of  the children into ’Kings and Queens of Narnia’ is also a memorable part the theme of Jupiter, the king of planets.  The ‘jovial’ nature of Jupiter is likewise highlighted by the inclusion of Father Christmas, as well as by the description of the castle of Cair Paravel as a ‘great star resting on the seashore.’

mag neph

Originally #6 in the series, really the prequel, and now listed as book #2 – Venus!

The Magician’s Nephew in which the creation of Narnia is described, exemplifies the fruitful, verdant imagery of Venus.  The creation story in which Aslan breathes out his ‘long, warm breath’ effecting swaying trees and  singing stars, as well as when “every drop of blood tingled in the children’s bodies, and the deepest, wildest voice they had ever heard was saying: ‘Narnia, Narnia, Narnia, awake.  Love.’” all exhibit the creative power of Venusian love.

Mars – Martial – Also a Major Motion picture

The martial imagery of Prince Caspian, such as the celebratory appearance of Bacchus, Aslan’s terrible power and swiftness once engaged in battle, as well as the description of Peter’s armor, including the special attention to his shield (of faith), which Lewis noted could be used as an offensive weapon, all show how the imagery of Mars served to enrich the story itself (first level of interpretation) as well as the more allegorical or symbolic themes (second level).

Sol – Sun – Illuminates Voyage of the Dawn Treader

With the sun as the thematic nature of Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Lewis is able to use its presumed penchant for alchemy to demonstrate God’s redemptive actions.  The thematic nature of the sun is undeniable with the waters of what came to be named Goldwater Island turning items into gold, the description of Aslan as a sort of Louis XIV Sun King figure, and more than that as the “sun of righteousness” (Malachi 4:2), and the sun’s effects helping to slay the dragons, with a nod to Homer’s Hymn to Apollo as the Greek sun god Apollo was known for killing reptiles.  The dawn arises as Eustace becomes undragoned, and Lewis’s mention in the poem The Planets of the sun hurting and healing is played out as Aslan tears off Eustace’s dragon skin. The wisdom-giving nature of the sun is also included as Reepicheep attains a level of practical wisdom in directing the ship to push rather than fight the Great Sea Serpent, ensuring its survival. The most vivid Aslan-sun image comes as the end, as the dawn Treader reaches the sunlit shores of the End of the World, as the children see a blindingly white lamb, which then invites them to breakfast and then turns into a golden Lion of Aslan Himself.

silver chair.jpg

Luna – Lunatics – the Moon provides a secondary, at times false, light

The role played by the moon in The Silver Chair is influenced by the following factors: the seemingly erratic movements of the moon give rise to the notion of lunacy or madness, a claim of the secondary silver light of the moon (with respect to that of the primary golden hues of the sun) being false or, using one of Lewis’s favorite epithets, ‘moonshine,’ the moon’s effect of tides associating it with wetness, and the color green being associated with the envy of the moon for the sun’s direct light. Thus, wetness is included in many of the terrestrial descriptions, and the overall counterfeit nature of the green-clad Queen Jadis’s exemplifies the offer of the inferior light of the moon.

The Mercurial Horse and His Boy

Mercury helps speed along the story and symbolic theme and messages of The Horse and His Boy, as its relative speed of rotation about the sun compared to the rest of the planets endowed its imagery with the imagery of being youthful, lively and energetic. The metallic element, Hg or mercury, also known as quicksilver, exhibits elusive, shimmering movement, hence the adjective ‘mercurial.’ As the planet is deemed quick, and due to its proximity to the sun, Mercury has gained the connotation of being the messenger of the sun or gods, as well as thusly conducting business on its many travels.  Like separated drops of mercury, various pairs are reunited in The Horse and His Boy, including the twin brothers Cor and Corin who are separated at birth, and as well as riders with their  horses twin horses Shasta and Bree as well as Aravin and Hwin.  The brothers Cor and Corin in fact represent the twins Castor and Pollux of Homer’s Iliad,  Cor or Shasta is based on Castor, who breaks horses in Homer, while his twin Corin is based on Pollux, the Homeric boxer (and in Homer, these brothers died and were turned into the constellation Gemini (‘the twins’), ruled by Mercury).

As the messenger of the gods, Mercury was thus associated with speech, or loquacity and language. Aside from the talking horses Bree and Hwin, the (basically) evil Calormenes are slow and witless in their speech. Aslan, on the other hand, upon meeting Shasta in the mountains, is so fleet of foot as to suggest to Shasta that he had encountered many lions, though in fact is was just Aslan, who performed many roles, as does the figure of Christ King, redeemer, sanctifier and the list goes on).  The mercurial imagery is also used when Aslan answers to Shasta about His identity, answering ‘Myself’ three times, with cadences suggesting the separate members of the Trinity: very deep and low, so as to shake the earth (God the Father), ‘loud and clear and gay’ (Christ the Jovial, logocentric King) and ‘whispered so softly you could hardly hear it, and yet it seemed to come from all round you as if the leaves were rustling with it” (the Holy Spirit). Curiously, the Greek god Hermes Trismegistus (three times great Hermes) – god of Mercury and inspiration for hermeneutics, the study of interpretation (of language) ) – was thought by medieval Christians to have been an ironic glimpse of the Trinity given to the Greeks.  Perhaps just as significant a message from the consideration of language in the mercurial Horse and His Boy is given in when Shasta first encounters Aslan, and is dumbfounded, realizing that he couldn’t, wouldn’t and needn’t say anything in Aslan’s presence, however similar to the lyrical utterances of Eliza Doolittle’s father Alfred Doolittle in My Fair Lady.

The Catastrophic, Saturnine Last Battle will make an appearance later

The author of the Narniad’s planetary decodifying is hereby spared the Saturnine discussion, though he may thematically experience this Infortunata Major in the future.  The apologetic value of Planet Narnia is largely an imaginative (though not imaginary) one, supplementing the conceptual, rational or propositional case of the gospel, though allowing a pre-rational experience of the same message, with the intended effect of more effectively effecting the action of the will.  The moral for the apologist is to use, create if necessary, such compelling imaginative retellings of the gospel for whichever mythos may be most appropriate for one’s audience.  Use of the Narniad itself in this program is certainly not unimaginable.

<Dry, academic or intellectual, timber follows / fair warning >

The overwhelming popular reception of the Chronicles then owes to its imaginative appeal. This imaginative appeal is informed by the distinction Lewis makes between contemplation and enjoyment in Meditations from a Toolshed: while reason serves as a beam of light to illuminate truths or features of the cosmos, it is the experience of those objects more directly that engages.  With reason one sees and contemplates the truths, with experience one feels the meaning of and enjoys the truths.  The experience that the Chronicles offer is one of an Aslan inhabited world, filled with wonder and a sense of the heavens and the heavenly.  Ward notes that the Chronicles go beyond Milton’s Paradise Lost which merely sketches the outlines of spiritual life, and is more like Dante’s Divine Comedy in which “we Enjoy”4  what Lewis described as “a poetical expression of religious experience.”5 The appeal is further enhanced by the more mythical or symbolic handling of the attractive elements of the Christian cosmos, compared to the alternative of an allegorical approach.  Pure allegories, a status approached by works such as Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress and Lewis’s own Pilgrim’s Regress, Lewis cites as prone to falling back into conceptual discourse, and thus stepping out of the imaginative engagement rather than more deeply into it.6 Ward cites the tendency of allegory to resemble Lewis’s ‘magistral metaphors’ in which the lesson’s details are already fully worked out. 7 Lewis further cited the risk (evident at some point in Bunyan) of allegories relying on strict equivalences and degenerating into  statements that could just as well constitute pure prose or sermons, and instead should be employed “only so long as it doing what could not be done at all, or done so well, in any other way.”8 Instead, a symbolic approach arises more naturally from the presentation of a truth or weltanschaaung from a mythical perspective, with the reader attempting to place meaning while imaginatively engaging the mythical retelling; even so, allegorical or symbolical references are best made not in a pure fashion, but with some looseness between the deeper meaning and the literal story being told.  Hence, instead of contemplating a how a green valley represents humility, one enjoys the greenness of the valley and enriches his appreciation of humility as he is exploring it, again, “moving always into the book, not out of it, from the concept to the image, (which) enriches the concept;” otherwise the pure concept is something the reader likely already had without opening the book in the first place, Lewis further noted. 9

Aslan – archetype for Christ – a central figure in both the book and motion picture

One further way in which the symbolical approach was utilized by Lewis in the Chronicles was the role played by the archetype of Christ, the series leading role in fact, that of the reigning and original lion-king, Aslan (though Aslan was in fact, like Christ, the emissary of his father, the Emperor over the Seas). The theory of the archetype, as pioneered in early 20th century psychology by Carl Jung, helped to feed Jung’s ‘collective unconscious’ as Lewis states in the essay ‘On 3 Ways of Writing for Children:’ “For Jung, fairy tale liberates Archetypes which dwell in the collective unconscious.” 10 Ward cites Lewis’s friend Charles Williams’ unfinished poem The Figure of Arthur as replete with archetypal references, chiefly centered on Venus in fact, 11, with Williams’ 1931 The Place of the Lion being a possible archetypal inspiration for Lewis’ Aslan, though apparently a host full of Platonic archetypes populate the novel.

The planets themselves, of course, served as further archetypes for Lewis, in the Chronicles as elsewhere, as Lewis cited the imagery associated with Venus (a rich,  verdant garden of delights) and Saturn (a pessimism associated with Infortunata Major) as particularly relevant to modern times.  Thus, the imagery communicated more than just what Ward suggests as information, but instead offered the prospect that “the planetary characters need to be seized in an intuition… we need to know them, not just know about them.” 12 And beyond the planets themselves, the communication of the entire God-suffused cosmos (or ‘atmosphere’ as Lewis often described such a feature of stories, in On Stories in particular) was a primary objective of Narnia, or alternatively, as Ward states of Lewis’s depiction of the non-cognizant Pevensie children: “Through their ignorance, Lewis symbolizes what he believed to be our common human condition: unawareness of the supernatural.” 13

The Magician’s Nephew – Venus/origins of Narnia moved from 6th spot in the Septiad / Septet / Heptalogy to #2 (though it is a prequel); martial/Mars-themed Prince Caspian thus bumped down to #3, sol(ar) Voyage of the Dawn Treader thus #4

Archetype theory in fact experienced a revival with literary critic and Christian minister Northrop Frye’s 1957 Anatomy of Criticism, citing the multiple levels in which scripture had been held to operate by church Fathers and Scholastics, including Lewis’s favorite, Dante.  A four-fold level of meaning to, or action by, scripture, as used by Dante in his Divine Comedy, includes literal (historical), allegorical, tropological (or moral) and anagogical (a pointing forward, especially to Christian eschatology).   These levels of signification or meaning operate simultaneously, giving a polysemous (multiple meaning or signs) nature. For literature, this archetypal theory serves to connect literature and poems to each other in their spheres of semantic operations, though in a more general sense and particularly with reference to Scriptural semantics (which can serve as a useful proxy for the Narniad here), the incidents of the story or of history are pointers to a greater, transcendent level of meaning.  While Frye’s book came out just after the Chronicles were finished (1954), it is an interesting occasion of the prominent role of archetypes in literature circles in the 1950s.  I.A. Richards is cited as the one British member of the New Critics (the rest being from the American South), as Richards’ 1926 Science and Poetry and 1929 Practical Criticism inspired the critical defense of the imaginative, of poetry, in the face of the logical positivism of the 1920s; in this, he was similar to Kant in philosophy in seeking to protect the claims of religion from those of Enlightenment science, or to Lewis’s essay The Language of Religion.  Otherwise, Lewis explicitly addressed the use of archetypes, perhaps influencing Frye, with statements such as

The consideration of issues of occasion and receptivity lay a fairly capable framework for undertaking the major claim of the book, the thesis of the medieval and planetary symbolism apparently adopted throughout the entirety of the seven book series.  Without summarizing the insights and details of the seven chapters and nearly 170 pages of planet by planet analysis of Lewis’s work (including his poems, essays and the Space Trilogy in addition to the Chronicles of Narnia), wherein the case is plainly, forcefully and thoroughly made, of perhaps more telling relevance is Ward’s discussion on the depths of literary and theological aspects of this cosmological reinforcement of the theme of the Narnian tales.  As discussed previously, the presentation of a theme, even simply an enchanted type of place, was for the Chronicles as well as for Tolkien’s Middle Earth, nearly as much the accomplishment of the series as was the actual plotline pursued (which of course helped to further define and enchant said worlds). 

Fellow Inkling / Writer Charles Williams (1886-1958) made serious use of archetypes in his novels. Neither TS Eliot nor the Incredible Mr. Limpet were to be found among them, however.

From a literary and historical perspective, Lewis can be seen to both use and redeem pagan mythology, in the traditions of Dante, Spenser and Milton, allowing gods to perform tasks of God, and using the partial truths of mythology to serve the greater purpose of the ‘myth become fact.’ As Lewis once quipped:”If paganism could be shown to have something in common with Christianity, ‘so much the better for paganism,’ not ‘so much the worse for Christianity.” 14  By the use of classical and pagan figures such Bacchus among others in Prince Caspian, Lewis thus carried out the  use  of  medieval and classical imagery in modern garb, following in the traditions of Dante and Spenser among many others.

From a theological perspective, the imaginative representations of the immanence of God and grace in nature are key accomplishments of the series, though Lewis held as equally important regarding God as “unspeakable transcendent” as well as “unspeakably immanent” 15 The work of the divine nature on the children is thus evident, as they for instance become Kings and Queens in The Lion Witch and Wardrobe, gain the fruit of life under Venus in The Magician’s Nephew and come to love poetry under the influence of Mercury in The Horse and His Boy.  The archetypal figure of Aslan is of course part of the theological symbolism, as previously discussed; the absence of the Holy Spirit in the symbology of the Chronicles is an interesting point taken up by Ward, though its absence is accounted for by Lewis’s suspicions of the ability to introspect one’s spiritual experience, where the Holy Spirit is most evidently in operation.  Such introspection is cast as similar to the unfruitfulness of contemplating the Lewisian beam of light when compared to enjoying the objects with which one can interact and enjoy while operating in its illumination.  Just as the Holy Spirit is somewhat speechless in the Chronicles (though Lewis is said to have used such evocative symbols as breath, fire and dove when appropriate), so is the effect of the planets, the various instantiations of divine nature, similarly immanent yet silent throughout the Chronicles (and one would suspect in the Space Trilogy, quite notably Out of the Silent Planet).  The transcendence and immanence of God are portrayed with planets that are effective in their influence yet quite quiet and behind the scenes.  Even Aslan himself is shown to embody the divine aspects of the various planets in each book of the series, providing the richness, depth and Enjoyment for which the Chronicles are so ‘beloved’ (sorry, Dr. Ward).


Arguments against Ward’s proposed code mostly serve to clarify some of the finer points in favor of the Planet Narnia argument.  For instance, that Lewis never explicitly divulged the code can be explained by his enjoyment of a secret and ideas about implicit ‘kappa elements’ (typically ‘atmosphere’) in stories.  The notion that Lewis was actually being fairly strongly allegorical with the planetary themes, as well as the criticism that he was not more strictly allegorical, come from a misunderstanding of Lewis’s preference for (imperfect) symbolism over direct, calculating allegory, as discussed previously. Finally, that Lewis never divulged the secret is countered by the effectiveness of the imagery used already accomplishing its (esp. literary-historical and theological) purposes, as just discussed.  The reward of the secret planetary Narnia Code can be construed in (the) light of Lewis’s appreciation for patient hard work, allowing the treasure of the secret to be afforded to those diligent and perceptive enough to swashbuckle their way through the billowing semantic and allusive tides, and those wise enough to follow the Sparrowesque discoveries by quietly intelligent book purchases and/or program and course enrollments.

The apologetic relevance of the argument has in fact been largely fleshed out already: the provision of the kappa element of a God-inhabited ‘atmosphere’ thoroughly embedded in the Narnian cosmos, as well as an awakening of the characters as well as readers from Lewis’s diagnosis of ‘the common human condition: unawareness of the supernatural,’ are effectively accomplished at various levels of the Chronicles.  The literal level of  the stories themselves as well as the symbolic (and somewhat allegorical – one is reminded of the popular conception of the comparatively non-allegorical, mythic structure of Tolkien’s Middle Earth being puzzlingly different from that of the more allegorical Chronicles) levels portray the truths of the Christian faith in an imaginatively engaging manner. It is at the third level, the provision of the secret element of ‘atmosphere’ constructed via inclusion of the various planetary themes, that the argument and apologetic significance of Planet Narnia are most effective and telling.  As Ward noted of Lewis’s conversion:

at the decisive moment, it was his imagination that first had to be addressed; it was through imagination that his reason and, ultimately, his will were transformed.  The organ of meaning had to be enrolled before his ‘natural organ of truth’ could get to work; and both imagination and reason had to be satisfied before the core part of him, his ‘command center,’ the will, could turn about and receive truth.”16

Elsewhere in that essay, Ward summarizes Lewis’s definitions:

reason is ‘the natural organ of truth’; imagination is ‘the organ of meaning’ and meaning itself is ‘the antecedent condition of both truth and falsehood’.  Imagination is therefore, for Lewis, ‘the prius of truth’: before something can be either true or false, it must mean.17

Truths that cannot be conceptually entertained and accepted often can slip through the rational defenses, like the slow blade of Gurney Hallick in Dune,18 though the Venetian sense of the arrows of cupid also suggests itself.

The apologetic effectiveness of the Planet Narnia argument thus relies on the imaginative accompaniment of the conceptual or propositional account of the gospel.  Rational presentation of the gospel is ultimately a necessary component, pointing to the transcendent grounds to which one seeks to nudge or wholly transport the audience, though attaining this state of rapture will necessarily require a semantic realization of one’s situation, and hence the employment (or perhaps ‘deployment’ would be more appropriate) of the imaginative approach.



Davidson, Andrew. Imaginative Apologetics: Theology, Philosophy and the Catholic Tradition.  London, UK: SCM Press, 2011.

Lewis, C.S. Of Other Worlds: Essays and Stories, ed. Walter Hooper. New York, NY: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1975.

Lewis, C.S. Selected Literary Essays. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

Lewis, C.S. The Discarded Image. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1995.

Markos, Louis. From Plato to Postmodernism: Understanding the Essence of Literature and the Role of the Author.  Chantilly, VA: The Teaching Company, 1999.

Ward, Michael. Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2008.

Ward, Michael. The Narnia Code: C.S. Lewis and the Secret of the Seven Heavens. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2010.


  1. S. Lewis, The Discarded Image (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1995), 119.
  2. Lewis, “The Alliterative Meter,” in Selected Literary Essays (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 2013), 23.
  3. Michael Ward, “C.S. Lewis on Imagination and Reason in Apologetics,” in Imaginative Apologetics: Theology, Philosophy and the Catholic Tradition, Andrew Davison (London, UK: SCM Press, 2011), 6.*
  4. Ward, Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2008), 41.
  5. , p.133.
  6. Lewis, “The Vision of John Bunyan,” in C.S. Lewis Selected Literary Essays (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 2013), 149.
  7. Ward, Planet Narnia, 31-32.
  8. Lewis, “The Vision of John Bunyan,” 146.
  9. , 149.
  10. Lewis, “On Three Ways of Writing for Children,” in Of Other Worlds: Essays and Stories, ed. Walter Hooper (New York, NY: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1975), 27.
  11. Ward, Planet Narnia, 175-176.
  12. Lewis, Discarded Image, 109.
  13. Ward, Planet Narnia, 228.
  14. Lewis, Letters, only reference available: https://gratefultothedead.wordpress.com/2013/10/23/c-s-lewis-on-pagan-philosophy-as-a-road-to-christian-faith/ where Ward’s “C.S. Lewis on Imagination and Reason in Apologetics” is cited!
  15. Lewis, English Literature in the 16th Century, Excluding Drama (Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press, 1954), 460.
  16. Ward, “C.S. Lewis on Imagination and Reason in Apologetics,” 8.*
  17. Ward, “C.S. Lewis on Imagination and Reason in Apologetics,” 5.*
  18. Frank Herbert, Dune, (Online Available: http://slowblade.com).


*denotes page number of standalone document as made available by Dr. Ward; ostensibly not the page number in the Davidson text.


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