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As I was re-reading "The Vaults of Yoh-Vombis" by Clark Ashton Smith, I noticed some surprising similarities to another fantasy classic, "The Sunken Land," by Fritz Leiber. Obviously, there are many differences between the two tales, but they both feature

  • Exploration of a ancient, apparently lifeless city (hardly an uncommon situation in SF and fantasy)
  • Opening a special door, behind with the monsters still occupying the ruins dwell
  • The explorers being devoured, except for the protagonist, by flat, floppy monsters.

Leiber's story was written about a decade after Smith's, so I wonder whether Leiber ever indicated he was influenced by the earlier tale.

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