Ossva is for Ossvanian ivory…



“Ossva is for Ossvanian ivory, which comes from the buttons shed every winter by Ossvaniyra. The buttons are gathered by children in early spring after the snow melts, a tradition comparable to an Easter egg hunt. Ossvaniyra are semifossorial, and their burrows are sometimes spoiled by the unchecked enthusiasm of immature humans. A few of the more unruly children may disappear during the button gathering. Ossvaniyra are not over-large but they are omnivorous, and a small brat can make a tasty treat. The buttons are carved by tinsmiths into traditional shapes like cabbages, beetles and rabbits.”

Top image: Decorative captial letter Ossva, shaped as an Ossvaniyr.
Bottom image: My usual lousy photograph of the cheap paperback edition from the seventies. You can see the 1926 first edition cover here.

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