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Encyclopedia > The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents
Terry Pratchett
The Discworld series

28th novel – 6th individual story
Outline
Characters: Maurice, Darktan, Dangerous Beans, Peaches, Hamnpork, Sardines, Spider - a Rat King, Death of Rats, the Piper
Locations: Überwald
Motifs: Fantasy, Beatrix Potter, The Pied Piper of Hamelin, The Secret of NIMH, Grimm's Fairy Tales
Publication details
Year of release: 2001
Original publisher: Doubleday
Hardback ISBN: ISBN 0-385-60123-9
Paperback ISBN: ISBN 0-552-54693-3
Other details
Awards: Winner of the 2001 Carnegie Medal.
Notes: The first Discworld book to be aimed at the younger market.

The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents is the 28th novel in Terry Pratchett's Discworld series, published in 2001. It was the first Discworld book to be aimed at the younger market; this was followed by The Wee Free Men in 2003. Terence David John Pratchett, OBE (born 28 April 1948) is a British fantasy and science fiction author, best known for his Discworld series. ... This article is about the novels. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (771x1200, 298 KB) Summary Cover of The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents by Terry Pratchett Author: David Wyatt Source: lspace. ... This article is about the cryptozoological phenomena. ... See also: Discworld magic Some of the Discworld gods at Dunmanifestin. ... In Terry Pratchetts fictional Discworld universe, Überwald is a region located in near the foot of the Ramtops, farther from Ankh-Morpork than Lancre is. ... For other uses, see Fantasy (disambiguation). ... Helen Beatrix Potter (28 July 1866 – 22 December 1943) was an English author and illustrator, botanist, and conservationist, best known for her childrens books, which featured animal characters such as Peter Rabbit. ... The oldest picture of Pied Piper (watercolour) copied from the glass window of Marktkirche in Hamelin by Freiherr Augustin von Moersperg. ... Mrs. ... Frontispiece of first volume of Grimms Kinder- und Hausmärchen (1812). ... It has been suggested that The Crime Club be merged into this article or section. ... The Carnegie Medal in Literature was established in the UK in 1936 in honour of Scottish philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. ... For other uses, see Novel (disambiguation). ... Terence David John Pratchett, OBE (born 28 April 1948) is a British fantasy and science fiction author, best known for his Discworld series. ... This article is about the novels. ... For The Wee Free, see the Free Church of Scotland. ...


The novel won the Carnegie Medal in 2001, providing Pratchett with his first major award. The leader of the judges, Karen Usher, declared that the choice was a unanimous one: "This is an outstanding work of literary excellence - a brilliant twist on the tale of the Pied Piper that is funny and irreverent, but also dark and subversive."[1] The Carnegie Medal in Literature was established in the UK in 1936 in honour of Scottish philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. ...

Contents

Plot summary

The Amazing Maurice is a talking cat, who leads his Educated Rodents, a group of talking rats, as they go from town to town being a plague so that their accomplice, a boy piper, can "lure them all away" from the town, after which they share the money the piper makes. The rats had gained intelligence from eating the waste from the rubbish tip behind Unseen University; Maurice gained it after eating one of the rats, before he was capable of realizing that they were no longer proper rats. Look up Piper in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Unseen University (UU) is a school of wizardry in the fictional Discworld city of Ankh-Morpork, staffed by a faculty composed of mostly indolent and inept old wizards. ...


The group is not completely happy; the leader of the rats, Hamnpork, despises Maurice, while Dangerous Beans, a near-blind rat who guides them like a guru, wants to start a rat civilisation and both he and Peaches, the group's scribe, find their trickery unethical. The rats are seeking an ideal of humans and rats living together, following the example of their sacred book Mr Bunnsy Has an Adventure. They agree to do one last job, in the town of Bad Blintz, in Uberwald. For other uses, see Guru (disambiguation). ... In Terry Pratchetts fictional Discworld universe, Überwald is a country on the other side of the Ramtops from Lancre and Ankh-Morpork. ...


The rats set about planning their offensive, led by Darktan, their general, while Maurice and Keith, the piper, look around. They are surprised to find that while the buildings are expensively built, the people have little food, and rats are hunted far more viciously than anywhere else. Maurice and Keith meet Malicia, the mayor's daughter, who is a story teller (her grandmother and great aunt were the Sisters Grim). She soon discovers that Maurice can talk, and meets Sardines, a tap-dancing rat who is the most daring of the group. While talking to her, Maurice reveals that the rat-catchers have been passing off boot-laces as rat tails (for which they are paid 50 pence each). For other uses, see Brothers Grimm (disambiguation). ...


As they set off to look in the rat-catchers' house, the rats discover many rat tunnels, which are empty, save for traps and poison. The two groups meet in the rat catchers' den, where they have been storing the food the rats are thought to have eaten, and find cages where the rats are being bred, for coursing. Coursing is the pursuit of game by dogs—chiefly Greyhounds—running by sight, not by scent. ...


The rat-catchers return, and lock Keith and Malicia away, and take Hamnpork to be coursed. Maurice hides, and feels a voice trying to enter his mind. The rats feel it, and it returns many of them to being simple rats, to the dismay of Dangerous Beans. Darktan leads a group to rescue Hamnpork, while Peaches and Dangerous Beans free Keith and Malicia. Malicia lets slip that Mr Bunnsy Has an Adventure is a fictional children's book, and Dangerous Beans and Peaches leave in despair.


Darktan's group is successful in rescuing an injured Hamnpork, though Darktan himself, the head of the Trap Disposal Unit, finds himself in a trap. After a near-death experience, and the death of Hamnpork, he assumes leadership, and sets out after Dangerous Beans. Maurice, in the meanwhile, has given in to his conscience and is also seeking them, but the voice gains power over him. Malicia and Keith, after gaining freedom, trick the rat catchers into revealing their secret by tricking them into thinking they have been poisoned. The rat catchers have created a powerful rat king – several rats, tied together at the tail, who make a single mind with power over others – who is named Spider, being made of eight rats (eight being a magical number on the Discworld). NDE redirects here. ... This article is about the cryptozoological phenomena. ... The Discworld is the fictional setting for all of Terry Pratchetts Discworld fantasy novels. ...


Spider is interested in Dangerous Beans; other rats he can control, but Dangerous Beans has a mind similar to his: one that thinks for others. Dangerous Beans refuses Spider's offer of jointly ruling, as Spider wants to wage war on humans. As this happens, Malicia and Keith, under Spider's control, are about to set free the trapped rats. Spider tries to destroy Dangerous Beans' mind; this is felt by his army of rats, and Maurice. Dangerous Beans is able to resist, but Maurice reverts to being a cat, and the cat instinct tells him to pounce on Spider, though enough of his mind remains to tell him to sever the knot in Spider's tails.


Darktan's army, who have been fighting Spider's rats, find Peaches in Spider's lair, which is burning after Peaches dropped a match. Maurice emerges carrying Dangerous Beans. When he is safely out, he falls over and dies. In ghostly form, he sees the "Bone Rat" coming for Dangerous Beans. He attacks him, but is picked up by Death, with whom he strikes a deal: one of his remaining lives for Dangerous Beans'. Death is a fictional character in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ... Death is a fictional character in Terry Pratchetts Discworld series. ...


Though Spider is defeated, there is still a problem remaining: the rat piper is due to arrive the next day. The rats set about rounding up the other, non-intelligent, rats ('keekees'). When the piper arrives, Keith challenges him. His pipe had been broken by the rat-catchers, so he uses a borrowed trombone, to the sounds of which Sardines comes out dancing. When the piper starts to play his magical pipe, the rats plug their ears to avoid being charmed. One rat does come out: Mr. Clicky, a clockwork rat the rats use to test traps.


The piper calls Keith aside, and tells him the tricks of the trade: the pipe contains a hidden slide position for a trick note that drives rats away, the stories are made up so people will be scared into paying. Keith and the piper then lead the keekees out of town – Keith wants to maintain the story of the piper, and the rats want a convenient way to set the keekees free.


Once that has been done, the rats emerge, offering to tell the humans where to find the stolen food and money, in return for living peacefully with them. Maurice negotiates, selling the humans a promise of a brighter future, with the rats as a tourist attraction. Keith stays on as the town's piper, and the town becomes a tourist attraction, as Maurice predicted, and everybody remarks on how clean the place is.


Later, Maurice finds a child to whom he asks "Hey, stupid looking kid. You wanna be lord mayor? No, down here kid."


Ideas and themes

The novel presents a new take on the classic fairy tale The Pied Piper of Hamelin.[2] The oldest picture of Pied Piper (watercolour) copied from the glass window of Marktkirche in Hamelin by Freiherr Augustin von Moersperg. ...


All the rats' names derive from the words they have seen written on tins before they knew what the words meant, and they have called themselves whatever they thought sounded good. Pratchett puns on this, such as the doubting rat, who was called 'Tomato' (as in Doubting Thomas). The Incredulity of Saint Thomas by Caravaggio. ...


Adaptations

old Radio 4 logo BBC Radio 4 is a UK domestic radio station which broadcasts a wide variety of spoken-word programmes including news, drama, comedy, science and history. ... Year 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... BBC Radio 7 is a digital radio station broadcasting comedy, drama, and childrens programming 24 hours a day. ... is the 153rd day of the year (154th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 117th day of the year (118th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2008 (MMVIII) is the current year, a leap year that started on Tuesday of the Anno Domini (or common era), in accordance to the Gregorian calendar. ... BBC Radio 7 is a digital radio station broadcasting comedy, drama, and childrens programming 24 hours a day. ...

Translations

  • Изумителният Морис и неговите образовани гризачи (Bulgarian)
  • Čudesni Maurice i njegovi učeni glodavci (Croatian)
  • Úžasný Mauric a jeho vzdělaní hlodavci (Czech)
  • Mirakelse Maurits en zijn Gestudeerde Knaagdieren (Dutch)
  • Hämmastav Maurice ja tema õpetatud närilised (Estonian)
  • Mahtava Morris ja sivistyneet siimahännät (Finnish)
  • Le Fabuleux Maurice et ses rongeurs savants (French)
  • Maurice, der Kater (German)
  • Il prodigioso Maurice e i suoi geniali roditori (Italian)
  • Brīnumainā Morisa dēkas (Latvian)
  • Magiske Maurits og hans Gløgge Gnagere (Norwegian)
  • Zadziwiający Maurycy i jego uczone szczury (Polish)
  • O Fabuloso Maurício e seus ratos letrados (Portuguese)
  • O Fabuloso Maurício e seus roedores letrados (Portuguese - Brazil)
  • Uluitorul Maurice şi rozătoarele lui educate (Romanian)
  • Den Makalöse Maurice och hans Kultiverade Gnagare (Swedish)

See also

The oldest picture of Pied Piper (watercolour) copied from the glass window of Marktkirche in Hamelin by Freiherr Augustin von Moersperg. ... Mrs. ...

External links

References

  1. ^ Guardian - 'Pied Piper' brings belated literary reward.
  2. ^ Guardian - 'Pied Piper' brings belated literary reward.
Reading order guide
Preceded by
The Last Hero
28th Discworld Novel Succeeded by
Night Watch
Preceded by
The Truth
6th Individual Story
Published in 2001
Succeeded by
Monstrous Regiment
Awards
Preceded by
The Other Side of Truth
by Beverley Naidoo
Carnegie Medal Winner
2001
Succeeded by
Ruby Holler
by Sharon Creech

 
 

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