Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, The Easter Egg - Arthur Dent - Fictional and Real

The main character in Douglas Adams' book _The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy_ is named Arthur Dent. There was a real Arthur Dent, a religious writer who about 1600 published a book called _The Plain Man's Pathway to Heaven_. If you're a poor person who wants to get off the planet I guess it helps to know one Arthur Dent or the other.

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Contributed By: Larry Kuenning on 09-02-1999
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Comments

misfire writes:
As wacky as this whole series was, anything is possible! I am still trying to get off of this planet! My towel is ready!
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Jonathan Tu writes:
It's also an example of the fact that the universe is run by a loony in a shack. :) Plus, the fact that the Heart of Gold is now in operation.
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Ginny writes:
I think that you could be right about there being a connection. Interestingly, I know a real Arthur Dent, who lives in Ilford, London. My friend's cousin actually lives close by, and guess what her name is? ... Patricia MacMillan! [Yes, I KNOW that the name was Tricia MacMillan, but it's pretty close] I'm doubtful as to there being any connection at all, though!
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Reader writes:
Douglas Adams says this is only a coincidence. Read "Don't Panic", the story of how Hitchhiker came to be.
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Gail writes:
Yeah, but it IS a coincidence. In the original pilot script Arthur was called Aleric B., but Adams changed it al the last minute - he scribbled on the type copy in pencil! (See appendices to "Don't Panic")
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penael writes:
Let me also add that the character in Little Shop of Horrors whom Bill Murray played (the dentist patient who loved oral pain) was named "Arthur Denton".
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Chris Dent writes:
Maybe, but it's still an amazing coincidence. I mean, check out the book titles they wrote. They are structured the same way. The [person]'s [thing] to [place].
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OMNIpotus writes:
I'm with wordsmith - Douglas Adams (DA) = Arthur Dent (AD)
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I actually happen to think that the mice, from that funny dimension of theirs, did it all. Lab mice have always had the upper hand.
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Ray writes:
rule number one of flying: Don't wave at anybody.
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emily writes:
I don't think it is a coincidence, even if he did change it at the last minute it still may not have been.
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Adam Murray writes:
I think it's even more impressive for being a coincidence than if Adams' had intended it. To me, it's an amazing example of synchronicity.
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I reckon the dolphins did it.
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wordsmith writes:
AD=DA: Entropy Reversed
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Tibby writes:
It's kind of like the whole ginnandtonix phenomena that's in Hitchiker's - except in real life! (oooh)
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mfsl_junkie writes:
It wasn't the dolphins who did it, nor the Heart of Gold, nor the pandimensional beings that looked like mice in our dimension (they look like us in their higher dimensions), but instead it was that black bird that was capable of "reverse engineering" who was the new version of the Guide (from "Mostly Harmless", in case you haven't read that one of the novels). It was the second version of the Guide that created the coincidence.
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