In Harry Turtledove’s book The Case of the Toxic Spell Dump, how precisely does the toxic spell dump actually work?

  • I recommend you make this question more specific by adding details about which parts of the story you understood and which parts you did not. Otherwise, you're much less likely to get a useful answer, and the question might get closed.
    – Kevin
    Aug 10, 2018 at 2:42

1 Answer 1


Assuming you're asking about the mechanics of it, it basically works much like a traditional toxic waste dump in that it's placed underground, hopefully sealed off from the rest of the world. As best I can tell, there is no process to break it down, or to transform it, much like a good bit of the toxic waste we have in our world today.

The mechanics of sealing are via religious artifacts:

So, no alkahest under the Devonshire dump. Instead, the designers had put in the usual makeshifts: blessings and relics and holy texts from every faith known to mankind, and elaborate spells renewed twice a year to use the law of contagion to extend their effect to the places where they weren't actually buried.

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