Pratchett, Terry Easter Egg - Heaps of Eggs in Each Book!

Terry Pratchett in his Discworld novels makes many subtle references to things of a more Earthly nature, and it has become somewhat of a competition among his fans to see who can find the most, and the obscurest, of these references. For instance, the novel Soul Music has the main character Imp y Celyn, whose name is translated Imp = bud, Celyn = holly ie Bud y Holly!

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Contributed By: Anonymous on 09-07-1999
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Special Requirements: Any of his Discworld novels
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gothmog writes:
All found Easter Eggs so far: http://www.co.uk.lspace.org/books/apf/index.html
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@8*7 writes:
Terry Pratchett makes a reference to his favourite band, They Might Be Giants, in the book Soul Music. The Disc-group is called Yes, We Really Are Dwarves"
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Miriana writes:
Re: Ankh-Morport being London. Comments people have made regarding wheter Ankh-Morpork is London or New York can easily be solved by saying it's both. The whole point of the discworld is that it's an oppurtunity for Terry Pratchett to take the micky out of whatever is taking his fancy at that particular point in time.
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Shelique writes:
Speaking of "Soul Music", I conclude that Mr Pratchett is a Kirsty MacColl fan. In the scene at the very end, when Susan is speaking with her classmates, they tell her that the chip shop in Three Roses Alley has taken on a new help and "you know, I'd SWEAR he's elvish!" This is a reference to Ms MacColl's very first chart hit named, "There's a Guy Works Down Our Chip Shop Swears he's Elvis"
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Azoth writes:
Glod was referenced in an anterior book (the story of King Creosote, I think, who could turn anything he touched into Glod, Glod being a dwarf. Creosote suddenly found himself surrounded by angry little men with axes...). Soul Music's Glod is suppossed to be a descendant from the legendary Glod. BTW, my favourite self-reference is when in 'Maskerade' the Almanack printer references someone spelling 'famine' with seven letters. This alludes to an infamous editorial mistake in 'Good Omens'. For lots of stuff like that, visit http://www.lspace.org
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Michael writes:
Also in Soul Music, the Troll Lias decides to change his name to Cliff (Rock being another name for Troll in Ankh, cliffs being made out of rock) and is told that you wont get far in the music business with a name like Cliff. A reference no doubt to Cliff Richard, the longest solo male artist of all time, probably before records began! Records Ha,Ha,Ha!
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Nishkers writes:
Uhm... I think Wyrd Sisters is more MacBeth than Hamlet...
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Turin writes:
Ehm, did it ever occur to you guys that not even Terry knew of all those eggs you find? =)
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jsl writes:
Folks, Are the 'eggs' in these books really eggs ? Pratchett is a comic novelist, one of the facets of his humour is sideways references to 'real life'. These eggs are just the more complex or extreme examples among the many more straight forward references. More specifically these things are put there to be found by the reader as part of the reading experience, true eggs are put in place for reasons other than the main function of the work. By this token one might as well say that all Pratchett's work (excepting the serious novels) is a series of nested eggs (sic!)
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cellery99 writes:
also, it may be coincidence but one of Gaspode the dog's illnesses is lickey end. There is also a place in the UK (the West Midlands) called Lickey End.
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RE: Ankh-Morpork being like Victorian London. I have it on good authority that it's actually based on Lancaster and Morcombe, with the river Lune in between. As for that mysterious shopkeeper whose shop you can't get into because of all the books, and the shopkeeper appears to always be there... that exists here too :)
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wibbler writes:
a rather odd egg if you can call it that, is the name of the bird keeper in carpe Jugulum, Hodgesargh (probably spelt wrong here). is named after a man called hodges who goes to all the terry pratchet conventions and book signings exceterar dressed up as charictors from his books. it is hodgesargh rather than hodges as the man is quite scary and a bit of a freak so people say its hodges aaarrrgh!
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St_Just writes:
I don't mean to sound rude but Wyrd sisters may have references to Hamlet but the major shakespearian influence is quite clearly from Macbeth. Guy murdering the king and then being troubled by it to the point of a nervous breakdown, egged on by a dominering wife and then badgered by three witches. So... the Scotish play anyone?
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qazwsx writes:
the word "ankh" is the Greek (or summit like that) word for life, and as we all know there is no life in the ankh. ahhhhh the irony of Pratchett..........
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Laydee writes:
Ah yes, Mr Pratchett is extremely witty, especially in real life... I went to a book signing of his once and because my name is Zoe with an umlaut over the "e" he spent about 10 minutes telling me about another girl with the dots over the "o". It turned out that somebody had accidentally stapled a piece of paper with the name on it, and her father had thought that the holes left were dots! So next to his signiture, he gave me plenty of spare dots, bless him... But I still don't get the "famine with seven letters"
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Lyn writes:
There are actually references for Ankh-Morpork being New York too. 1. The Big Wahooney (The Big Apple kinda way) 2. The song Ankh-Morpork, Ankh-Morpork (New York, New York).
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relic writes:
I think you'll actually find that Wyrd Sisters is an amalgamation of both Hamlet AND MacBe....the Scottish play (three witches, 'is this a dagger...', evil Lady and henpecked Lord, etc etc)
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Wrathchild writes:
King Creosote MAY have some reference to the Mr. Creosote of Python fame, but is primarily a corruption of the name Croesus, from the original saying "As rich as Croesus". Don't ask me about the origin of that, saying. My classics only go so far. As for the Imp Y Celyn\Buddy Holly, that is rammed down your throat a little much for an Easter Egg, isn't it?
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The whole of Lords and Ladies, more or less, is a send-up of Midsummer Night's Dream, right down to the incompetent Lancre actors..
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I met Terry when he went to Woking for a book signing when "Mort" came out - he was not that well-known then and only a few people came, which was nice as I had the chance to have a good chat with him - as I was a regular and friendly with the staff. Anyhow - I worked for a firm which had "Mort" in the name and gave him my card. He amused himself by doing doodles in the copies of his books that I brought/bought. He personalised a copy of Mort for the guy with that name, but the ungrateful sod (Mort himself) was unimpressed when I gave it to him. We discussed his naming of places and characters in his books and he told me that almost everybody is named in homeage or with reference to people he meets or places he visits. I had assumed that Ankh-Morpork was a combination of Buda-Pesht, Londarn and New Yoirk - Lancaster L-Ankh-aster and Mor-ecombe/Pork makes a lot of sense though. He is far too up-front for his references to be anything other than homage - they are not EEs because he wants you to understand the references: that is why it is comic-satire. "We're on a mission from Glod" - is one of the funniest to me, but I like the references to art, film and music. Some are a bit pot-boiler, but many are refreshingly funny.
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Chill writes:
not to mention the many people that asks him questions like "You're not elvish by any chance?" referring ofcourse to Elvis.. Still dont know who Glod Glodsson is s'posed to be...Glod = gold rearranged (but all of ya'll already knew that)..
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tom writes:
just a thought....all that glitters is not gold...therefore glod gloddson = gary glitter?
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TTHAL writes:
Obvious egg here, references to Ankh Morpork being London; 1: the song 'The streets of Ankh-Morpork' is a ploy on 'The streets of london' by Ralph McTell. 2: before london's victorian sewers were installed they used the Thames for a sewer, could this be the basis for the legendary Ankh 3: Pseudopolis yard is an obvious ploy on Scotland yard, the head office of the UK's police force in (you guessed it) London!
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Wellzy4eva writes:
The name of the Patrician of Ankh-Morpork Lord Havelok Vetinari, is from the vetinary, Havelok Vetinary (He must haev seem it driving past, like I did).
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Below, Kaikoura said that Peach Nelly was based on a real-life Australian desert named after a Russian ballet dancer called Pavlova. The Australian desert is called a Peach Melba, and it was named after an Australian opera singer, Dame Nelly Melba. (True story: She ate so many of them that she put on weight and had to go on a diet. Her chef then invented a special low-calorie toast for her -- Melba Toast.)
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Laydee, the 'famine spelled with seven letters' joke is a reference to an editor's error in 'Good Omens', in which a miscommunication turned 'Famine' into a seven-letter word.
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mew writes:
In "Jingo," Carrot goes around Ankh-Morpork in a disguise for potatoes. He wears a pale pink nose, a fake black mustache, and a bowler hat. It's a cute reference to Mr. Potato Head.
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St_Just writes:
Hodgesaaargh is so named because of the frequent attacks that his birds of prey make on him. everytime he introduces himself he gets attacked and people have a way of misunderstanding
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If you've ever read the stories of Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser by Fritz Leiber, you know a good deal of Ankh-Morpork's idiosyncrasies are based on Lankhmar, from those stories.
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Laydee writes:
Actually, I think you'll find that Cohen the Barbarian is actually named after Genghis Kahn, as his name is Genghiz Cohen.
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Puntino writes:
Surely the Buddy Holly reference was actually in the book?
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Miffy writes:
My favourite book is either Jingo, The Fifth Elephant or Maskerade. Maskerade is an obvious reference to the Phantom of The Opera, and I thought it was very funny, especially with all the five exlamation marks stuff. Bucket = Bucquet dippy silly Christine = cool singing Christine. and so on. (The Phantom of the Opera RULES )
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Rincewind writes:
Well, I don't know, if it is in the english original, too. But in the german version of Soul Music - which has the title "Rollende Steine" (Rolling Stones) btw - there's a part which would translate to: "We're on a mission from Glod, " which is obviously a reference to the Blues Brothers "We're on a mission from God."
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eriol writes:
Laydee wrote: Actually, I think you'll find that Cohen the Barbarian is actually named after Genghis Kahn, as his name is Genghiz Cohen. Additionally, Geghis Cohen is the name of a character (a slightly deranged Philatelist) in Thomas Pynchon's "The Crying of Lot 49".
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Esqulax writes:
Psudopolis Yard - Obvious reference to Scotland yard.. although.. Psuedo means "Not" Or "Pretending to be", and as carrot says, Polis means City (Policeman meaning Man of the City) So Its actually "Fake City Yard".. same with the regular reference to Pseudopolis in many of the books.. its talking about a Fake City :)
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Miracleman writes:
Oh, yes, there were tons of them. "Sto Helit Lace" = "Chantilly Lace", "Good Gracious Ms. Molly" = "Good Golly Ms. Polly", etc.
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Kaikoura writes:
Just give me a second to gush. I'm a big fan of Terry Pratchett's Discworld, but I've always been terrible at spotting the references, except in 'The Last Continent'. These might be stating the obvious, but- 'Terra Incognita'- A pun on the latin name for Australia 'Terra Australis', or possibly 'Terra Nullius' Peach Nelly- The scene in the opera house kitchen is based on the history of the Australian dessert pavlova, which was named after a Russian ballerina. Beer Soup- Rincewind tries to make soup using beer, and the result is a sticky mess that the locals like on toast. Its a reference to vegemite, which has the same base ingredient (yeast) as beer. Mad Max Two and Priscilla Queen of the Desert- Both these movies were filmed in Australia, and there's references to them- the busload of female impersonators, the armoured carriage, etc Theres also other references I can't remember the specifics of to Ned Kelly, The Man From Snowy River, Waltzing Matilda (the song everyone is humming at the end, I think), Bush Tucker, Drop Bears, the penal colony and the Dreamtime.
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pepperpot writes:
I wonder if King Creosote is a reference to Mr. Creosote (from "Monty Python's The Meaning of Life"), who ordered everything on the menu, then exploded upon finishing off with an after-dinner mint.
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i dont know why im bothering with this but the dysc theatre in wyrd sisters most probably has something to do wiv shakespeares globe theatre.......useless information but hey.. who cares
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Casquivana writes:
In Soul Music, there were lots of song eggs. The only one I can remember at the moment is that there was a song called "Pathway to Paradise", a play on the oldie "Stairway to Heaven" ... but I know there was lots more.
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Punch writes:
No one else seems to have mentioned this, so I will. The whole Discworld setting (a flat world supported on the back of elephants who stand on the shell of a giant turtle that is swimming through space) is a reference to an ancient belief that the world was indeed flat and on elephants who are floating through space. The book I have that has this information says that the myth only had 3 elephants, not 4.
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Pow@ writes:
I'm sure Ankh-morpork is modeled on London - I live near the Thames... Ankh - Thames...British people will understand
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Plum writes:
right lets clear the i swear he was elvish up now. a colloqiaul english phrase is elvis isnt dead i saw him in the chippy last week. which is where that came from. gold= it says in the book his paretns couldnt speel kinda like magrat. ankh morpork=london.
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