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In the first part of "End of Eternity" it seems like Eternity is off in a separate plane of reality, disconnected from time. But then later it explains how each section was duplicated for each century and implies that each section is actually in it's century. This is reinforced by the narrative of Harlan traveling up and down via kettle to the far future where he has Noys staying, and contemplating vast empty centuries on either side. But on the other hand, it seems that they can travel via kettle to different places within a century, so what's the value of having the section actually in the century it works on?

So I am a bit confused as to the nature of Eternity. Is it series of real places, one per century, and the thing that makes it "Eternity" is simply access to Kettle and knowledge of how to manipulate time? Or is it some place off outside the normal universe and time? Or possibly did Asimov make it confusing on purpose?

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    How can one not be confused by Eternity? – Dima Nov 25 '14 at 20:54
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But then later it explains how each section was duplicated for each century and implies that each section is actually in it's century.

That's not quite correct. The sections are in two parts with half contiguous with the kettle shaft and half present in the target time period. The two parts are separated by a portal. Asimov doesn't describe the portal in detail. He just refers to it as the curtain, and I can only find one mention of this in the whole book, in chapter 1:

He paused again at the infinitely thin curtain of non-Space and non-Time which separated him from Eternity in one way and from ordinary Time in another.

So Eternity is in some form of separate universe, though Asimov doesn't provide any details of how this works.

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