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Encyclopedia > Minor Discworld concepts

This article details minor Discworld concepts: concepts and ideas from the Discworld of novels by Terry Pratchett which only appear in the background, or are not well fleshed out. // This article is about the novels. ... Terence David John Pratchett OBE (born April 28, 1948, in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England[1]) is an English fantasy author, best known for his Discworld series. ...

Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.

Contents

Anorankh

An anorankh is a pseudo-mystical symbol, consisting of an ankh wearing an anorak. It stems from a discussion on alt.fan.pratchett, a newsgroup for fans of British author Terry Pratchett, creator of the highly popular Discworld series of humorous fantasy novels. One user mistakenly used the word "anorak" to refer to the ancient Egyptian symbol of life, the "ankh". A series of puns ensued which was eventually joined by Pratchett himself, who commissioned the first Holy Anorankh from Clarecraft, the company responsible for creating the series of official Discworld figurines. Clarecraft eventually made two designs commercially available, one silver and one pewter. Both designs are generally worn as necklaces or earrings, and they have since become an unofficial symbol of Pratchett-fandom. Ankh The ankh (pronunced // in English, symbol ) was the Egyptian hieroglyphic character that stood for the word , meaning life. ... Inuit parka. ... A newsgroup is a repository usually within the Usenet system, for messages posted from many users at different locations. ... Terence David John Pratchett OBE (born April 28, 1948, in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England[1]) is an English fantasy author, best known for his Discworld series. ... // This article is about the novels. ... The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ...


In Maskerade, Granny Weatherwax remarks that a girl named Colette is wearing "interesting earrings." This is a reference to a fan that Terry met at a convention; being impressed with her Anorankh earrings, he offered her a cameo in his next novel. Maskerade is the eighteenth novel in the Discworld series by Terry Pratchett. ... Esmerelda Esme Weatherwax (usually called Granny Weatherwax) is a character from Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ...


An image of the Holy Anorankh design is available here.


The L-Space Web's A.F.P (alt.fan.pratchett) Timeline Martin Walser's anorak post


Anti-crime

A rare type of crime, or rather, the opposite of crime. An anti-crime, as defined in Reaper Man, must: Reaper Man is a Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett. ...

... be done in such a way that it causes outrage and/or humiliation to the victim. Merely giving someone something is not enough. Examples of this type include breaking-and-decorating, proffering-with-intent, and whitemailing (for example threatening to reveal a mobster's donations to charity).

Even on the Discworld, or more likely, especially on the Discworld, anti-crime has never really caught on. The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ...


Background magic

On the Discworld, where magic has more in common with particle physics than Houdini, high-level background magic is what happens where a very powerful spell hits, creating a myriad of sub-astral particles that severely distort local reality. Building a house in (or even walking into) a region where this has happened is extremely dangerous. Thousands of particles explode from the collision point of two relativistic (100 GeV per nucleon) gold ions in the STAR detector of the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider. ... Harry Houdini (March 24, 1874 – October 31, 1926), born Ehrich Weiss, was a Hungarian/American magician, escapologist, stunt performer, as well as an investigator of spiritualists, and amateur aviator. ...


If you prefer to remain the same species, shape or level of sanity, stay out of these places.


Low-level background magic simply refers to the standing magical field that allows the Discworld to exist at all. Medium levels cause odd effects, such as coins landing on their edges and turning into caterpillers, and high levels can lead to reality weakening, allowing the Things from the Dungeon Dimensions to enter. The Discworld in Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels runs on magic. ... In Terry Pratchetts Discworld series, the Dungeon Dimensions are the endless wastelands outside of space and time. ...


This concept of the ramifications of magic is not unique to the Discworld. In Final Fantasy VII, drawing on Materia and Mako Energy from the planet's Lifestream begins to harm the planet. In the roleplaying game Rifts, the large release of potential psychic energy into the ley lines opens Rifts in reality. In Nightbane, areas where magic is commonly used may have residual energies creating a being out of magic, or attract ghosts or spirits. Final Fantasy VII ) is a console role-playing game (RPG) developed and published by Square Co. ... Materia ) are small spheres of crystalized spiritual energy used in the magic system of Square-Enixs role-playing game Final Fantasy VII. These spheres allow their users to cast various magicks and use special abilities. ... Rifts is a multi-genre role-playing game created by Kevin Siembieda in 1990 and published continuously by Palladium Books since then. ... Nightbane is a horror role-playing game and setting created by C.J. Carella and published by Palladium Books in 1995. ...


In contemporary occult theory the idea that repeated magical or spiritual acts may have such an effect are common.


The concept is most likely a reference to background radiation. Background radiation is the ionizing radiation emitted from a variety of natural and artificial radiation sources: sources in the Earth and from those sources that are incorporated in our food and water, which are incorporated in our body, and in building materials and other products that incorporate those radioactive sources...


Battle of Koom Valley

The inhospitable Koom Valley was home to an ancient battle between dwarfs and trolls that both species came to use as an excuse for their mutual enmity. It was said to be the only known battle in which both sides ambushed the other, and acted as inspiration for the development of the game of Thud. Dwarfs in Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels are similar to the Dwarves of J. R. R. Tolkiens Middle-earth, which they largely started out as a homage to, and dwarfs/dwarves in other fantasy novels. ... Trolls in Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels, unlike the monstrous trolls of folklore and J.R.R. Tolkien, have been subverted into a moderately civilised race. ... Thud is a board game devised by Trevor Truran and first published in 2002, inspired by the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett. ...


Later engagements have led to a total of sixteen battles of Koom Valley (seventeen counting a "fracas" in Vilinus Pass), only three of which took place in the valley itself. This is in part due to the battle being a convenient patch for rips in time often used by the History Monks, although the History of Thud suggests that something about the valley itself encourages violence (this might be related to the Summoning Dark). The Order of Wen the Eternally Surprised, better known as the History Monks, and also sometimes referred to as the Men In Saffron (see Men in Black) and No Such Monastery (see NSA), is a highly secretive religious organisation in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett, based in the Monastery...


Koom Valley's story is eventually revealed in the novel Thud!: The intention was to sign a treaty, but some took the sudden sighting of their mortal enemies for an ambush and tried to attack. Both sides fell on their own to keep this from happening, and fought until a flash flood destroyed them. The only word to come from the valley was exactly the wrong one. Thud! is Terry Pratchetts 34th Discworld novel, released in the United States of America and the United Kingdom on September 13, and it may have been released already in other countries, such as Norway [1] and Denmark. ... Lower Antelope Canyon was carved out of sandstone by flash floods A Flash Flood is a rapid flooding of geomorphic low-lying areas (washes), rivers and streams, caused by the intense rainfall associated with a thunderstorm, or multiple training thunderstorms. ...


This led to the continuation of the enmity until the efforts of Commander Vimes of the Ankh Morpork City Watch revealed the truth thousands of years later, in the process uncovering the last resting place of B'hrian Bloodaxe, the first Low King. He was playing an early form of Thud with Diamond, king of Trolls. This article details minor Discworld characters; characters from the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett who only appear in the background, or who have only had a brief starring role. ...


The name "Koom" is a reference to the Welsh word cwm, which is pronounced "koom" and means "valley". Thus "Koom Valley" means "Valley Valley." Pratchett has an admitted fondness for tautalogical place-names, such as "Cheetwood", which literally means "Woodwood," and Torpenhow Hill, which means "Hillhillhill Hill." Welsh redirects here, and this article describes the Welsh language. ... Torpenhow Hill is a hill about 200 metres above sea level in Cumbria in north west England on the side of which the village of Torpenhow is situated, close to the A595 between Cockermouth and Carlisle. ...


Boffo

Boffo is described by Pratchett as "the power of expectations"; the strength one gains from behaving exactly as someone expects you to. Boffo is introduced by the witch Eumenides Treason in Wintersmith as a means by which she ensures people take her seriously. It gets its name from the Boffo Novelty and Joke Shop, no. 4, Tenth Egg Street, Ankh-Morpork, from which Miss Treason purchases most of her interior decorating supplies. It is possible that the shop is run by a clown called Boffo, a minor character in Men At Arms. Frequently purchased items include fake skulls, fake spiders' webs and her hat (Wicked Witch #3- "A must for scary parties"). No witch actually has spiders' webs in her cottage or keeps skulls for any reason, but people expect witches to do so and Miss Treason obliges them, the better to ensure that when people come calling they don't see what is really there (a tired, blind 111-year-old woman), but what they expect (a venerable, terrifying 113-year-old witch). She also ensures that many of the rumours about her (that she has a demon in her cellar, that she eats spiders, that she has a clockwork heart) are kept current and circulating, to ensure the presence of "Boffo thinking" among her clients. As a concept, Boffo is hardly unique to the Discworld; Rolex watches, Armani suits and the crowns of kings are all, in their own ways, Boffo, only more expensive. See also: Discworld magic A major subset of the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett involves the witches of Lancre. ... Wintersmith is the title of the third Tiffany Aching novel in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series, due to be published 28th September 2006. ... Ankh-Morpork is a fictional city-state which prominently features in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of fantasy novels. ... Rolex SA is a Swiss manufacturer of wristwatches and accessories renowned for their quality and exclusivity, as well as their cost (from a few thousand to more than one hundred thousand U.S. dollars). ... Giorgio Armani is an Italian fashion designer (born 11 July 1934 in Piacenza, Italy), particularly noted for his menswear. ...


Devices

Devices have so far only appeared in Thud!. Spelt with a capital D, and with enough reverence that it can be heard in speech, 'Device' is the collective term for a variety of artifacts of unknown origin, but with many purposes, all of them of great power and value, such that they are "worth mining through a mountain of granite for". Thud! is Terry Pratchetts 34th Discworld novel, released in the United States of America and the United Kingdom on September 13, and it may have been released already in other countries, such as Norway [1] and Denmark. ...


Devices are apparently indestructible, but apparently it is possible to cause them to deactivate permanently. The types described are Cubes and Axles, though an 'Average bar' is mentioned in passing. Most cubes so far discovered are owned by dwarfs, but all were created long before dwarf civilisation. The description of Devices in Thud! is similar in concept to the "Joker artefacts" described in Pratchett's 1976 novel The Dark Side of the Sun The Dark Side of the Sun is a comic science fiction novel by Terry Pratchett, first published in 1976. ...


Cubes

Cubes are just that in appearance, six inches across, like ancient bronze, and glow green and blue when active. Cubes store approximately 10 years of constant sound, and when first activated by dwarfs are filled with natural sounds (such as running water and birdsong).


Cubes are activated and deactivated by set sensual stimuli, which is most commonly a spoken word, but can be "a breath, a sound, a temperature, a point in the world, the smell of rain." Many cubes have never been prompted to work.


It was a Cube, perpetually replaying sounds from the Battle of Koom Valley, that drove the painter Methodia Rascal insane during the painting of his life's work: The Battle of Koom Valley. This article details minor Discworld concepts: concepts and ideas from the Discworld of novels by Terry Pratchett which only appear in the background, or are not well fleshed out. ...


The Cubes mentioned thus far bear a striking resemblance to the Thing in The Bromeliad (A trilogy, also by Terry Pratchett, which includes the books Truckers, Diggers and Wings), although the Thing possessed its own intelligence rather than being a recording device. The Bromeliad Trilogy (also known as in the UK as The Nome Trilogy) is a trilogy of childrens books by Terry Pratchett consisting of Truckers, 1990 Diggers, 1991 Wings, 1991 The trilogy tells the story of the Nomes, a race of tiny people from another world who now live...


Axles

Axles are two six-inch-edge cubes joined perfectly on one face. They are presumably in activation and physical nature otherwise similar to Cubes, but this is not explained. When activated, Axles become a perpetual motion machine: One side rotates relative to the other, very slowly, at a 6.9 second revolution, but have apparently infinite torque. This, combined with their complete autonomy without fuel and the use of a series of gear speed/torque gears allows them to power the mechanics and industries of entire dwarf cities, including tow-powered traffic. This article or section should include material from Parallel Path See also Perpetuum mobile as a musical term Perpetual motion machines (the Latin term perpetuum mobile is not uncommon) are a class of hypothetical machines which would produce useful energy in a way science cannot explain (yet). ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Moment (physics). ...


The Patrician Lord Vetinari was gifted an Axle by the dwarf Low King under Überwald Rhys Rhysson for Ankh-Morpork's part in the resolution of the Koom Valley dispute. Its uses in the city are still being researched by the Artificers' Guildmaster Mr. Pony, but in theory it could revolutionize the heavy industrial and municipal workings of Ankh-Morpork. Lord Vetinari appears, speculatively, to link the use of the Axle with the extensive dwarf tunnels under the city. According to Captain Carrot, only three other Axles are known to exist. This is an article about the privileged class in ancient Rome. ... Lord Havelock Vetinari is the Patrician of Ankh-Morpork, the head of the fictional city state of Ankh-Morpork in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ...


Average Bar

Average Bars are mentioned, but not described in Thud! Currently nothing is known but one can assume they are indestructible and rare like all other Devices. In passing it is mentioned that they are "invaluable for food preparation". The fate of the Average Bar in Thud! is unknown but since the Axle from the same mine is now owned by Ankh-Morpork its reasonable to assume the same of the Average Bar.


Dimwell Arrhythmic Rhyming Slang

The Mulitverse has seen the evolution of Rhyming slang in many times and places. What most examples of the genre have in common is the element of rhyme. There is, however, one exception. Cockney rhyming slang is a form of English slang which originated in the East End of London. ...


Dimwell arrhythmic rhyming slang (DARS) has so far (2007) appeared only in Going Postal, where it is spoken by Tolliver Groat, the elderly Junior Postman. On first introduction to him, the new Postmaster, Moist von Lipwig is disconcerted by Tolliver's denial of his toupée, when he asserts, "It's all mine, you know, not a prunes." Explanation reveals that in DARS, "syrup of prunes" means wig. 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD (or CE) era. ... Memorial of the 1986 post office incident in Edmond, Oklahoma. ... The Ankh-Morpork Post Office is featured in the book Going Postal, the most recent addition to British fantasy author Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of books. ... Moist von Lipwig is a character in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ...


There are only a few examples of DARS in Going Postal, and we are not vouchsafed the specific meaning and derivation in each case. Some are:

  • cup-and-plate - no definition but "He's a bit cup-and-plate in the head" implies it means "not quite right"
  • syrup of prunes - wig

Figgin

A small short-crust pasty containing raisins, according to the Dictionary of Eye-Watering Words. (Guards! Guards!) Noted, in addition to the amusing confusion derived from sounding like some sort of euphemism, for its role in the end of Mad Lord Snapcase (Havelock Vetinari's predecessor as Patrician of Ankh-Morpork) who was hung up by his figgin following a revolt. (Interesting Times). It is possible the meaning has changed over the years, but then, there may really be a horrifying aspect to being hung next to a piece of pastry. Guards! Guards! is the 8th Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett, first published in 1989. ... Lord Havelock Vetinari is the Patrician of Ankh-Morpork, the head of the fictional city state of Ankh-Morpork in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ... Interesting Times is a novel in the Discworld series by Terry Pratchett. ...


The Jerk Syndrome

Described in Thud!. This is a condition that may be experienced by a woman who is so beautiful, so alluring, that, as Angua describes it, any man with half a brain isn't even going to think about asking her out, because it's obvious she's too grand for the likes of him. This leads her to believe that the problem is at her end, and that there must be something wrong with her. This persists until she meets a man who does not have half a brain (i.e. is too stupid to realize she'll likely reject him, or is so used to rejection that it doesn't bother him, or has some other flaw that stems from an even more major flaw), and he does in fact ask her out, and she is so grateful that she says yes; it is implied that problems ensue because she is, as it were, going to a fancy, lavish restaurant and only ordering a bread roll and maybe a small salad. The concept is used in reference to Tawneee, who is the quintessential example of this with Nobby, although the strange part is that she actually likes him. Thud! is Terry Pratchetts 34th Discworld novel, released in the United States of America and the United Kingdom on September 13, and it may have been released already in other countries, such as Norway [1] and Denmark. ... Delphine Angua von Ãœberwald is a character from the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett. ... This article details minor Discworld characters; characters from the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett who only appear in the background, or who have only had a brief starring role. ... Cecil Wormsborough St. ...


Klatchian Coffee

A strong, nearly magical coffee, brewed in Klatch and drunk only by the initiated in very small cups. Klatchian coffee has a strong sobering effect, bringing the drinker "to the other side of sobriety". This state of sobriety is referred to as knurd ("drunk" spelled backwards), which dispels the soft pink cushions of sobriety and allows the world to be seen as it really is. To counteract the effects of Klatchian coffee, in Klatch it is drunk with Orakh (a very violent alcoholic bevarage made by mixing scorpion venom and cactus sap and fermenting it in the sun for several weeks). After a few screams, a lie down and a stiff drink, the occasional drinker will try never to be "knurd" again. A cup of coffee Coffee is a widely consumed beverage prepared from the roasted seeds—commonly referred to as beans—of the coffee plant. ... This article is about the country of Klatch. ... In Terry Pratchetts fictional universe of Discworld, knurd is the opposite of drunk, as opposed to the median state of sobriety. ... Wikipedia:Translation/Cactus Genera See Taxonomy of the Cactaceae The name cactus, plural cacti or cactuses, has been traditionally given to any member of the flowering plant family Cactaceae. ...


Klatchian coffee is (presumably) intended as an exaggerated version of Turkish coffee. A cup of Turkish coffee served at an Ä°stanbul terrace. ...


Klatch's Coffee was a name of a store in King of the Hill. (To be fair, the reference is more likely to the term "Coffee Klatsch" than the Discworld books.) King of the Hill is a satirical American animated television series created by Mike Judge (creator of Beavis and Butt-head) and Greg Daniels for the FOX Network. ...


Knurd

Knurdness is the opposite of being drunk; not sober, but as far from sober as drunkenness, except in the opposite direction. It strips away all the illusion, all the comforting pink fog in which people normally spend their lives, and lets them see and think clearly for the first time ever. This, needless to say, is a very traumatic experience though it sometimes leads to important discoveries. Those seeking to treat drunkenness by having the sufferer drink Klatchian coffee should take care, lest they send him too far the other way - through sobriety and out the other side.


Also, Samuel Vimes, one of the Discworld's most notable characters, is sometimes referred to as being constantly knurd and two drinks short of actual sobriety, which at least partially accounts for his depressive nature and tendency towards alcoholism—he started out looking for a cure to knurdness. It is also noted in the instance where Vimes gets knurd, that most people who ever get knurd make sure never to get knurd again. Sam Vimes is a fictional policeman from Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ... The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ... Alcoholism is the consumption of, or preoccupation with, alcoholic beverages to the extent that this behavior interferes with the drinkers normal personal, family, social, or work life, and may lead to physical or mental harm. ...


Knurd written in reverse also spells "drunk".


Latatian

A variation of Dog Latin. Based on the name, it presumably originates from the Sto Plains town of Sto Lat, although it is often referred to as the "Old Language of Ankh-Morpork". The phrase Dog Latin refers to the creation of a phrase or jargon in imitation of Latin, often by directly translating English words (or those of other European languages) into Latin without conjugation or declension. ... In Terry Pratchetts Discworld, Sto Plains is a rich country, full of silt and cabbage fields. ... Ankh-Morpork is a fictional city-state which prominently features in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of fantasy novels. ...


Pratchett describes it as "very bad doggy Latin." It is most often seen in the mottoes of the noble families, civic organisations and Guilds of Ankh-Morpork. In Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of fantasy novels, there are almost 300 Guilds in the city of Ankh-Morpork. ...


The classic example is the motto of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch; "Fabricati Diem, Pvnc". This is complete nonsense in Latin, but looks like it means "Make my Day, Punk" (see Dirty Harry), although Sergeant Colon insists it means "To Protect and Serve". Coat of arms of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch. ... Dirty Harry is a 1971 film directed by Don Siegel, the first of the series. ... Fred Colon is a fictional character in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett. ...


Latatian is also sometimes used by wizards when casting spells. It is also used by wizards and (as in the real world) doctors and lawyers to prevent laymen from knowing what they're saying, as in Albert's response to mysterious writing, "Sodomy non sapiens" ("I'm buggered if I know"), Rincewind's Stercus stercus stercus Moriturus Sum ("Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, I'm going to die") and the Morporkian legal principle "Acquiris Quodcumque Rapis" ("You Get What You Grab"). The wizards are major characters in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ... The Discworld in Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels runs on magic. ... Albert is a character from Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of novels, first appearing in Mort. ... Rincewind the Wizzard is a fictional character appearing in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett, several of which feature him as the central character. ...


As well, Latatian occurs in the religion of Omnianism, and an old mantra is "Cuius testiculos habes, habeas cardia et cerebellum." Pratchett loosely translates this to "When you have their full attention, their hearts and minds will follow," although this is not the exact translation. A more exact translation is "The one who holds the testicles holds both the heart and the mind."


Necrotelecomnicon

A powerful grimoire. Its name is a portmanteau of "Necronomicon" and "telecom". This design for an amulet comes from the Black Pullet grimoire. ... The Necronomicon is a fictional book from the stories of horror writer H.P. Lovecraft. ... Telecommunication involves the transmission of signals over a distance for the purpose of communication. ...


Since the "Necronomicon" is sometimes referred to as "The Book of Dead Names" or "The Book of The Dead", "Necrotelecomnicon" could be translated as "The Book of Dead Telephone Numbers" or simply "Phonebook of the Dead". The book is also known as the Liber Paginarum Fulvarum, Latin for "The Book of Yellow Pages". It lists all the old, dark gods of the Discworld (i.e. the Things from the Dungeon Dimensions). The First Edition, kept in the basement of the Library of Unseen University, has been known to eat readers. It is said that any man who reads more than a few pages will die insane, which works out fine for the Librarian who is an orangutan (and thus not a "man"). Latin is an ancient Indo-European language originally spoken in Latium, the region immediately surrounding Rome. ... For the use in computing, see Yellow Pages (computing). ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... In Terry Pratchetts Discworld series, the Dungeon Dimensions are the endless wastelands outside of space and time. ... Unseen University (UU) is a school of wizardry in the fictional Discworld city of Ankh-Morpork, staffed by a faculty composed of mostly insane and inane old wizards. ... The Librarian of Unseen University is one of the most popular characters in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of fantasy novels. ... Type species Simia pygmaeus Linnaeus, 1760 Orangutan distribution Species Pongo pygmaeus Pongo abelii The orangutans are two species of great apes with long arms and reddish, sometimes brown, hair native to Indonesia and Malaysia . ...


It was written by the Klatchian mystic Achmed the Mad, who apparently preferred to be called Achmed the I Just Get These Headaches, (a parody of H.P. Lovecraft's mad Arab Abdul Alhazred) after drinking too much Klatchian Coffee. Achmed is also the author of Achmed The I Just Get These Headache's Book of Humorous Cat Stories, the writing of which was said to have driven him mad in the first place. This article is about the country of Klatch. ... Howard Phillips Lovecraft (August 20, 1890 – March 15, 1937) was an American author of fantasy, horror and science fiction, noted for combining these three genres within single narratives. ... Abdul Alhazred is a fictional character created by the horror writer H. P. Lovecraft. ... This article details minor Discworld concepts: concepts and ideas from the Discworld of novels by Terry Pratchett which only appear in the background, or are not well fleshed out. ...


Grimoires called Paginarum Fulvarum (Yellow Pages) also appear in Good Omens (co-written by Pratchett and Neil Gaiman) and Gaiman's Sandman comic book. Pratchett calls it a "shared joke", and in the dedication to Equal Rites thanks Gaiman for lending him the last surviving copy of the book. For the use in computing, see Yellow Pages (computing). ... Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch (1990) is a fantasy novel written in collaboration between Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. ... Neil Richard Gaiman () (born November 10, 1960, Portchester, Hampshire) is an English author of numerous science fiction and fantasy works, including many graphic novels. ... The Sandman is a comic book series written by Neil Gaiman and published in the United States by DC Comics for 75 issues from 1988 until 1996. ... Equal Rites is a comic fantasy novel by Terry Pratchett. ...


Octarine

The colour of magic, also often called the eighth colour. Octarine is strongly indicative of magic and can only be seen by wizards, who sometimes describe it as resembling a fluorescent greenish-yellow purple (note that in conventional human colour vision, colour opponency prevents the perception of reddish-greenish or yellowish-bluish colours, and a perception describable as "greenish-yellow purple" would in fact combine all four green, yellow, red and blue perceptual hues into a single colour, for which it would be necessary to override both the red/green and yellow/blue colour opponency channels, something not possible under normal viewing conditions). On the other hand, if a greenish-yellow light is mixed with a purple light (as in RGB), or a greenish-yellow pigment is mixed with a purple pigment (as in CYMK), a shade of grey or a desaturated color is obtained. The colour octarine appears as black or invisible to ordinary people. Color is an important part of the visual arts. ... The Discworld in Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels runs on magic. ... Fluorescence induced by exposure to ultraviolet light in vials containing various sized Cadmium selenide (CdSe) quantum dots. ... It has been suggested that Red-violet be merged into this article or section. ... Color vision is a psychophysical phenomenon that exists only in our minds. ... Opponent colours based on experiment. ... Mossy, green fountain in Wattens, Austria. ... Rubber duckies. ... Red may be any of a number of similar colours at the lowest frequencies of light discernible by the human eye. ... The term blue may refer any of a number of similar colours. ... An image with the hues cyclically shifted The hues in the image of this Painted Bunting are cyclically rotated with time. ... The RGB color model utilizes the additive model in which red, green, and blue light are combined in various ways to create other colors. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Grey or gray (see spelling differences) is a colour between white and black. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Chromaticity. ... Unlucky black cat. ... An example of how an object could appear to be invisible through the use of mirrors Invisibility is the state of an object which cannot be seen. ...


The normal human visual system works by the presence of cones and rods in the eye. The ability of wizards to see octarine is explained by the additional presence of octagons. Normalised absorption spectra of human cone (S,M,L) and rod (R) cells Cone cells, or cones, are cells in the retina of the eye which only function in relatively bright light. ... Normalised absoption spectra of human rod (R) and cone (S,M,L) cells. ... The wizards are major characters in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ... For other uses, see Octagon (disambiguation). ...


A common conception of the colour is the colour of an incandescent filament when viewed through black-light film, a fluorescent white or ultrablue. Molten glassy material glows orange with incandescence in a vitrification experiment. ... HEROW!!! A filament of a 60-watt light bulb at 75X magnification An electrical filament is a thread of metal, usually tungsten, which is used to convert electricity into heat and light for the incandescent light bulb as made in 1878 by Joseph Wilson Swan, among others. ... Spectrum of a fluorescent black light source. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... White rose. ...


Quantum

Both quantum mechanics and the uncertainty principle have appeared in the Discworld in some form or another; however, neither concept even remotely resembles their counterparts from Earth. Fig. ... In quantum physics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle is a mathematical limit on the accuracy with which it is possible to measure everything there is to know about a physical system. ...


The Uncertainty Principle seems to be simply a "scientific" or "professional" way of saying "I don't know"; Death uses it in The Fifth Elephant as an excuse to appear when people are possibly going to die, apparently in addition to their actual deaths, even though he himself isn't clear what it is. All attempts to explain it outright, such as in The Last Hero, appear to be misunderstood versions of Schrödinger's cat. A slightly more accurate version has been used to explain the peculiar habits of the puzuma, and the unreliability of teleportation magic without assistance from Hex. A related concept is the Theory of Thaumic Imponderability, which says it is impossible to tell exactly what a given spell will do, until it's too late. Death is a fictional character in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ... The Fifth Elephant is the 24th Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett. ... This article is about the fantasy novel. ... Schrödingers Cat: If the nucleus in the bottom left decays, the geiger counter on its right will sense it and trigger the release of the gas. ... Terry Pratchetts fictional Discworld has a large number of creatures unique to it or its parasite universes (such as Fairyland or Deaths Domain). ... In the fictional Star Trek universe, the Heisenberg compensators are part of the Transporter system. ...


Quantum, on the other hand, isn't explained at all; in fact, it serves much the same function as "magic" does on Earth, as described in The Discworld Companion, "a sort of get-out-of-half-understood-explanation-free card" — essentially, an explanation that does not, in fact, explain anything. It should be noted that just "magic" by itself would not be appropriate as such a non-explanation on the Discworld, since magic is a more or less fully-understood phenomenon (as in The Last Hero, when Leonard of Quirm attempts to explain weightlessness in a spaceship as "er ... magic" and Rincewind asks, "What kind of magic?"). Another explanation of Quantum is given in Pyramids as "add another nought" (in regards to accounting). The Discworld Companion is an encyclopedia to all things Discworldian, created by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Briggs. ... Possible spoiler warning Leonard of Quirm is a fictional character in the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett. ... Astronauts on the International Space Station display an example of weightlessness Weightlessness is the experience (by people and objects) during freefall, of having no weight. ... Rincewind the Wizzard is a fictional character appearing in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett, several of which feature him as the central character. ... This is about the polyhedron. ...


It is implied in the books that Ponder Stibbons may have a better understanding of both concepts, but has given up trying to explain them to anyone. In the fictional universe of Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of books, Ponder Stibbons is a wizard in Unseen University. ...


Re-annual plant

In addition to the more common annual plants, biennial plants and perennial plants, Discworld harbors a small number of re-annual plants. These are plants which, due to a rare 4-dimensional twist in their genetic structure, flower and grow before their seed germinates. This is usually only possible in areas with considerable amounts of background magic. Farmers who grow re-annual plants are usually very careful about dates of sowing, lest they cause devastating temporal paradoxes (such as dying of starvation because the food one lived off months ago was never grown). The Discworld Almanak also mentions how a garden implement carelessly strewn among re-annuals months later can cause serious damage today, indicating that they can move items they are in contact with through time, as well. Peas are an annual plant. ... A Biennial plant is a plant that takes between twelve and twenty-four months to complete its lifecycle. ... Red Valerian, a perennial plant. ... The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ... This article details minor Discworld concepts: concepts and ideas from the Discworld of novels by Terry Pratchett which only appear in the background, or are not well fleshed out. ... The Discworld Almanak is a spin-off book from Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels, in a similar format to the Diaries and Nanny Oggs Cookbook. ...


When re-annual plant products undergo fermentation, the product is time-reversed alcohol, a rare substance much sought by fortune-tellers and the like, as ingesting it allows some ability to foretell the future, which from the point of view of the plant is the past. Time-reversed alcohol produces inebriation in the normal way, but the hangover is thrust backwards in time to several hours before the actual ingestion of the alcohol. This is known as a hangunder, and is usually very strong since one feels so dreadful one imbibes large amounts of alcohol to get over it. Yeast fermenting the wort at Makers Mark distillery, a step in the production of a distilled beverage. ... A hangover (veisalgia) describes the sum of unpleasant physical effects following heavy consumption of alcohol. ...


The only revealed re-annual plants are the vul nut vine, which is remarkable in that it can begin to flower as much as eight years before being sown and reannual grapes, which are harvested a year in advance of being sown.


Retrophrenology

A small industry springing up on the area around Ankh-Morpork based on the concepts of phrenology and physiognomy. However, retrophrenologists, rather than measuring a person's head and predicting their personality traits, seek to give customers whatever traits they desire to have by moulding their heads directly. What actually happens is that the customer is hit with a selection of different sized mallets, a treatment that can be said in complete honesty not to hurt a 'bit'. The efficacy of such treatments is unknown, but at least it keeps the money in circulation. A 19th century Phrenology chart Phrenology (from Greek: φρήν, phrēn, mind; and λόγος, logos, knowledge) is a theory which claims to be able to determine character, personality traits, and criminality on the basis of the shape of the head (reading bumps). Developed by German physician Franz Joseph Gall around 1800, and... Physiognomy (Gk. ...


Roundworld

Roundworld is the Discworld term for both planet Earth and the "real" universe itself. From a Discworld point of view it exists in a glass sphere at Unseen University, where it is taken care of by Rincewind. It was created by Hex to use up a huge excess of magic, created after the wizards split the thaum. The key point of Roundworld, however, is that it doesn't contain any magic. The wizards are fascinated, however, by the fact it does seem to have rules of its own. Adjectives: Terrestrial, Terran, Telluric, Tellurian, Earthly Atmosphere Surface pressure: 101. ... Unseen University (UU) is a school of wizardry in the fictional Discworld city of Ankh-Morpork, staffed by a faculty composed of mostly insane and inane old wizards. ... Rincewind the Wizzard is a fictional character appearing in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett, several of which feature him as the central character. ... Hex is an elaborate, Heath Robinson/Rube Goldberg-esque, magic-powered computer housed at the Unseen University in the Discworld series by author Terry Pratchett. ... The Thaum is a fictional scientific measuring unit from Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels, and is a way of quantifying magic. ...


Roundworld is the focus of all three Science of Discworld novels. The Science of Discworld (ISBN 0091886570) is a 1999 book written by novelist Terry Pratchett and popular science writers Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen. ...


Scumble

An alcoholic beverage drunk in very small cups some months apart (or served to strangers in pint mugs, as a sort of initiation test).


It was first introduced in Mort which tells us: Mort is a Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett and also the name of its main character. ...

"A lot of stories are told about scumble, and how it is made out on the damp marshes, according to ancient recipes passed down rather unsteadily from father to son. It's not true about the rats, or the snakes' heads, or the lead shot. The one about the dead sheep is a complete fabrication. We can lay to rest all the variants of the one about the trouser button. But the one about not letting it come into contact with metal is absolutely true..."

It is a parody of scrumpy and is made with apples. Well, mainly apples. Good scumble apples include the Lancre Blackheart, the Golden Disagreeable and the Green Billet. In Mort it was drunk on the Sto Plains, but in later books it is associated with Lancre, where it is distilled by Nanny Ogg (whose particular variant is known as "Suicider"). This is a list of kinds of apple ciders, broken down by country. ... This article details minor Discworld characters; characters from the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett who only appear in the background, or who have only had a brief starring role. ... In Terry Pratchetts Discworld, Sto Plains is a rich country, full of silt and cabbage fields. ... Lancre (pronounced Lanker) is a fictional country from Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels. ... Gytha Ogg (usually called Nanny Ogg) is a character from Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ...


When scumble is mixed with dwarfish beer, it creates a highly intoxicating cocktail known as "Fluff". Snakebite is a beer cocktail made from cider (the alcoholic drink known as hard cider in the United States) and lager beer. ...


Slood

Slood is something that could be discovered by intelligent civilizations, such as fire or water, but that humans on Earth have been too unintelligent to find. It is first described in The Last Continent. One of Rincewind's many accumulated positions is Reader in Slood Dynamics. Adjectives: Terrestrial, Terran, Telluric, Tellurian, Earthly Atmosphere Surface pressure: 101. ... The Last Continent is the twenty-second Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett, first published in 1998, that parodies Australian people and culture, as well as the famous Crocodile Dundee and Mad Max movies, as well as the popular Australian song Waltzing Matilda Synopsis Spoiler warning: After being dumped onto the...


Thaum

see also: Discworld magic, Fictional particles, and Thaumaturgy. The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ... A fictional chemical element is a chemical element, isotope or (sub)atomic particles that exist only in works of fiction (usually fantasy or science fiction). ... Thaumaturgy (from the Greek words thaumos meaning miracle and ergos meaning work) is the branch of magic (or magick, the term as employed by Crowley) that is concerned with the production of real-world, objective effects, e. ...


The Thaum is a measuring unit used in quantifying magic. It equals the amount of mystical energy required to conjure up one small white pigeon, or three normal-sized billiard balls. It can, of course, be measured with a thaumometer, and regular SI-modifiers apply (e.g. millithaum, kilothaum). The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ... Pigeon redirects here. ... A close-up picture of American-style pool balls Billiard balls are used in cue sports, such as carom billiards, pool, and snooker. ... Cover of brochure The International System of Units. ...


A thaumometer looks like a black cube with a dial on one side. A standard one is good for up to a million thaums - if there is more magic than that around, measuring it is not going to do any good.


An alternate measurement is the "Prime." It measures the amount of mystical energy required to move one pound of lead one foot. An attempt to put magic measurement into a logical framework, it never really caught on, as wizards are natural traditionalists.


Confusingly, the thaum also appears to be a particle; the magical equivalent of the atom. "Splitting the thaum" revealed that it was in fact composed of numerous sub-particles, called resons ("thingies") which came in five "flavours", up, down, sideways, sex appeal, and peppermint (see quarks). Note that since even before this discovery magical fields of less than one thaum were reported (The Light Fantastic), the particle known as the thaum must represent less magic than one thaum on the measuring scale. Atomic redirects here. ... For other uses of this term, see: Quark (disambiguation) 1974 discovery photograph of a possible charmed baryon, now identified as the Σc++ In particle physics, the quarks are subatomic particles thought to be elemental and indivisible. ...


The term thaum is based on the Greek term thauma (marvel), which is often used as a prefix meaning "magical" on the Discworld. It also suggests the non-SI unit of energy therm. The Discworld is the setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ... The therm (symbol thm) is a non-SI unit of heat energy. ...


Wahoonie

A fruit that grows in Howondaland. It is highly prized by some; the colour (earwax) and smell (like a sick anteater) make most people feel ill. It is also covered in spikes. Howondaland is a place on the fictional Discworld from Terry Pratchetts book series. ...


Its name may be based on the poisonous wahoo fruit, although the description is similar to the durian. Species Euonymus alatus - Winged Spindle Euonymus americanus - Strawberry-bush Spindle Euonymus atropurpureus - Eastern Burning-bush Euonymus europaeus - European Spindle Euonymus fortunei - Fortunes Spindle Euonymus japonicus - Japanese Spindle Euonymus obovatus - Euonymus occidentalis - Western Burning-bush The spindles, genus Euonymus, comprise about 170-180 species of deciduous and evergreen shrubs and... Species There are currently 30 recognised species (see text) This article is about the fruit. ...


Ankh-Morpork is known as the Big Wahoonie, although the fruit does not smell that bad. Ankh-Morpork is a fictional city-state which prominently features in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series of fantasy novels. ...


Wandering Shops

Also known as Tabernae Vagrantes. These are the mysterious shops from which people buy magical items, only to return when there turns out to be a problem (as there always does), and find the shop is vanished (as seen in H.G. Wells' "The Magic Shop", and various other fantasy stories). H. G. Wells at the door of his house at Sandgate Herbert George Wells (September 21, 1866 - August 13, 1946) was an English writer best known for his science fiction novels such as The War of the Worlds and The Time Machine. ...


One of these shops appears in The Light Fantastic, under the name "Wang, Yrxle!yt, Bunglestiff, Cwmlad and Patel. Estblshd Various. PURVEYORS". The proprietor explains that he operates under a curse, having failed to supply an item requested by a sourcerer, and being irritating about it. Twoflower apparently gained the Luggage from a similar shop. The Light Fantastic is a comic fantasy novel by Terry Pratchett, the second of the Discworld series. ... See also Magician and Wizard. ... Twoflower is a fictional character featuring in some of Terry Pratchetts Discworld novels. ... The Luggage appears in some of the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett. ...


Another, specialising in enchanted musical instruments, was encountered by some members of the Band With Rocks In during the events described in Soul Music, while they were trying to replace a ruined musical instrument. They were there able to buy the guitar which brought the Band fame (or which caused all the trouble, depending on your point of view). When two members of the Band came back to try to get more information about the guitar they were wholly unsuccessful, but after leaving, the presence of a faded '1' on the guitar caused one Band member to wonder who could have pawned the guitar: For other uses, see Soul music (disambiguation). ...

"... but, I mean, number one. Even the conch shell was number fifty-two. Who used to own the guitar?"

to which his companion responds:

"Don't know, but I hope they never come back for it."

An equally interesting conundrum is - who did they pawn it to?

Wow-Wow sauce

A parody of the real world sauce of the same name. The Discworld version was invented by an uncle of Mustrum Ridcully, and its ingredients include grated wahoonie, asafoetida, scumble, sulphur and saltpetre. It is a highly unstable substance and believed to be responsible (when combined with a charcoal biscuit) for the elder Ridcully's explosive death. (See Black powder for why the combination might be problematic.) A presumably different uncle of Ridcully's used to swear by (or rather, swear at) Wow-Wow Sauce as a hangover cure; according to Ridcully, "He seemed very peaceful when they came to lay him out". Ridcully also advised that Wow-Wow Sauce must never be consumed when sweat is condensing on the bottle. Parody of Back to the Future In contemporary usage, a parody is a work that imitates another work in order to ridicule, ironically comment on, or poke some affectionate fun at the work itself, the subject of the work, the author or fictional voice of the parody, or another subject. ... Wow-Wow Sauce is a sauce, apparently created by Dr William Kitchiner in the early 19th century. ... Mustrum Ridcully is a fictional character in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett. ... Binomial name Ferula assafoetida L. Asafoetida (Ferula assafoetida, family Apiaceae) is a species of Ferula native to Iran. ... General Name, Symbol, Number sulfur, S, 16 Chemical series nonmetals Group, Period, Block 16, 3, p Appearance lemon yellow Atomic mass 32. ... Saltpeter is variously: potassium nitrate (niter); or sodium nitrate (soda niter) ... Black powder was the original gunpowder and practically the only known propellant and explosive until the middle of the 19th century. ... A hangover (veisalgia) describes the sum of unpleasant physical effects following heavy consumption of alcohol. ...


Reference

    See also

    This is a list of fictional books within the Discworld series. ... Terry Pratchetts fictional Discworld has a large number of creatures unique to it or its parasite universes (such as Fairyland or Deaths Domain). ... This is a list of laws that are fictitious, and the fictions they exist in. ...

    External links

    • Discworld & Pratchett Wiki

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    Discworld (world) - Encyclopedia, History, Geography and Biography (5151 words)
    The Discworld is a fantasy land in the Tolkien and Brothers Grimm mold, complete with witches, wizards, dragons, trolls, and dwarfs; however, over time it has largely evolved into its own distinct culture, as its denizens find more sophisticated ways to outgrow their narrative conventions.
    Discworld civilization, which can broadly be defined as those countries that have invented the fork as well as the knife, is found around the Circle Sea's historic coasts.
    The majority of the Discworld novels are set in the 20th century AM, the Century of the Fruitbat, with the later ones entering the 21st, the Century of the Anchovy.
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