The Bands of Mourning

Title: The Bands of Mourning
Author(s): Brandon Sanderson
Release year: 2016
Publisher: Tor Books

Why in Database: One of the volumes of the Mistborn series, we found here only one mention of turtles, these reptiles, along with sharks, are used in comparison. This piece is part of one of the articles that can be seen on the front page of the newspaper showed in the book, how it looks we show in the mini-gallery.

More impressive than the harbor are the rows of ships docked there. Most are the usual familiar clippers and cargo ships, but among them float metal beasts like sharks among turtles.

Source: Mossar, Developed: XYuriTT

The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands

Title: The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands
Author(s): Stephen King
Release year: 1991
Publisher: Donald M. Grant

Why in Database: The third volume of the eight-volume Dark Tower series, the first one with turtle elements, and it quite a lot of them!

Below we present all seventeen fragments with turtle mentions, some with a geographical name (Turtle Bay), some with another geographical name, The Street of the Turtle, the rest mostly concerns a turtle character important in the series, named Maturin, this name here, however, it is not used yet, he is referenced only as one of the “guardians”.

The first mention is in the context of the guardian:

He tapped the center of the circle.
”Here is the Dark Tower for which I’ve searched my whole life.”
The gunslinger resumed: ”At each of the twelve lesser portals the Great Old Ones set a Guardian. In my childhood I could have named them all in the rimes my nursemaid—and Hax the cook—taught to me… but my childhood was long ago. There was the Bear, of course, and the Fish… the Lion… the Bat. And the Turtle—he was an important one…”
The gunslinger looked up into the starry sky, his brow creased in deep thought. Then an amazingly sunny smile broke across his features and he recited:
”See the TURTLE of enormous girth!
On his shell he holds the earth.
His thought is slow but always kind;
He holds us all within his mind.
On his back all vows are made;
He sees the truth but mayn’t aid.
He loves the land and loves the sea,
And even loves a child like me.”

The second is about Turtle Wax:

He cocked an eyebrow at her. ”Next carwash we come to, I’ll push you through myself. I’ll even Turtle-wax the goddamn thing. Okay?”

A reference to turtle slowness:

He dropped, and as he did, he saw the gunslinger’s left hand blur down to his side. My God, he thought, still falling, he can’t be that fast, no one can be that fast, I’m not bad but Susannah makes me look slow and he makes Susannah look like a turtle trying to walk uphill on a piece of glass—

The first mention in the context of the name Turtle Bay:

MILLS CONSTRUCTION AND SOMBRA REAL ESTATE
ASSOCIATES ARE CONTINUING TO REMAKE THE FACE OF
MANHATTAN!
COMING SOON TO THIS LOCATION:
TURTLE BAY LUXURY CONDOMINIUMS!
CALL 555-6712 FOR INFORMATION!
YOU WILL BE SO GLAD YOU DID!
Coming soon? Maybe . . . but Jake had his doubts. The letters on the sign were faded and it was sagging a little. At least one graffiti artist, BANCO SKANK by name, had left his mark across the artist’s drawing of the Turtle Bay Luxury Condominiums in bright blue spray-paint.

A poem about a turtle, a bit in the context of Turtle Bay and a bit in the context of a Guardian:

”See the TURTLE of enormous girth!
On his shell he holds the earth
If you want to run and play,
Come along the BEAM today.”
Jake supposed the source of this strange little poem (if not its meaning) was clear enough. This part of Manhattan’s East Side was known, after all, as Turtle Bay. But that didn’t explain the gooseflesh which was now running up the center of his back in a rough stripe, or his clear sense that he had found another road-sign along some fabulous hidden highway.

Again, a piece of poem:

”See the TURTLE of enormous girth” Jake muttered. ”On his shell he holds the earth.” He shivered. ”What a day! Boy!”

And again, a piece of poem:

As he told this part of his story for the second time, speaking very slowly now, Jake found that what the gunslinger had said was true: he could remember everything. His recall improved until he almost seemed to be reliving the experience. He told them of the sign which said that a building called Turtle Bay Condominiums was slated to stand on the spot where Tom and Gerry’s had once stood. He even remembered the little poem which had been spray-painted on the fence, and recited it for them:
”See the TURTLE of enormous girth!
On his shell he holds the earth.
If you want to run and play,
Come along the BEAM today.”
Susannah murmured, ”His thought is slow but always kind; He holds us all within his mind . . . isn’t that how it went, Roland?”
”What?” Jake asked. ”How what went?”
”A poem I learned as a child,” Roland said. ”It’s another connection, one that really tells us something, although I’m not sure it’s anything we need to know . . . still, one never knows when a little understanding may come in handy.”
”Twelve portals connected by six Beams,” Eddie said. ”We started at the Bear. We’re only going as far as the middle—to the Tower—but if we went all the way to the other end, we’d come to the Portal of the Turtle, wouldn’t we?”
Roland nodded. ”I’m sure we would.”
”Portal of the Turtle,” Jake said thoughtfully, rolling the words in his mouth, seeming to taste them. Then he finished by telling them again about the gorgeous voice of the choir, his realization that there were faces and stories and histories everywhere, and his growing belief that he had stumbled on something very like the core of all existence. Last of all, he told them again about finding the key and seeing the rose. In the totality of his recall, Jake began to weep, although he seemed unaware of it.”

Again the poem, this time maliciously reworked:

”Yeah, and probably is,” Eddie said. His face was pale and solemn… and then he grinned like a lad. ”
‘See the TURTLE, ain’t he keen? All things serve the fuckin Beam.’

Turtle street and turtle statue, reference to the guardian:

Eddie glanced up at the darkening sky and easily picked out the path of the Beam in the rushing clouds. He looked back down and wasn’t much surprised to see that the entrance to the street corresponding most closely to the path of the Beam was guarded by a large stone turtle. Its reptilian head peered out from beneath the granite lip of its shell; its deepset eyes seemed to stare curiously at them. Eddie nodded toward it and managed a small dry smile. ”See the turtle of enormous girth?”
Susannah took a brief look of her own and nodded. He pushed her across the city square and into The Street of the Turtle. The corpses which lined it gave off a dry, cinnamony smell that made Eddie’s stomach clench . . . not because it was bad but because it was actually rather pleasant—the sugar-spicy aroma of something a kid would enjoy shaking onto his morning toast.
The Street of the Turtle was mercifully broad, and most of the corpses hanging from the speaker-poles were little more than mummies, but Susannah saw a few which were relatively fresh, with flies still crawling busily across the blackening skin of their swollen faces and maggots still squirming out of their decaying eyes.

The Voice of the Turtle, probably in a guardian context:

Then the war had ended and silence had fallen… for a while. But at some point, the speakers had begun broadcasting again. How long ago? A hundred years? Fifty? Did it matter? Susannah thought not. What mattered was that when the speakers were reactivated, the only thing they broadcast was a single tape-loop… the loop with the drum-track on it. And the descendents of the city’s original residents had taken it for… what? The Voice of the Turtle? The Will of the Beam?

The next three mentions are about the street:

Eddie continued to push her along The Street of the Turtle and the Path of the Beam, trying to look in all directions at once and trying not to smell the odor of putrefaction. Thank God for the wind, he thought.

For Eddie it was, as some wise man had once said, deja vu all over again: he was running with the wheelchair, racing time. The beach had been replaced by The Street of the Turtle, but somehow everything else was the same. Oh, there was one other relevant difference: now it was a railway station (or a cradle) he was looking for, not a free-standing door.

Up ahead, the arched entrance to a marble building stood at the intersection of The Street of the Turtle and another avenue.

Street and bas-relief:

Maud set a rapid pace along The Street of the Turtle. Jeeves trotted beside her. Eddie, who was pushing Susannah in the wheelchair, was soon panting and struggling to keep up. The palatial buildings which lined their way spread out until they resembled ivy-covered country houses on huge, run-to-riot lawns, and Eddie realized they had entered what had once been a very ritzy neighborhood indeed. Ahead of them, one building loomed above all others. It was a deceptively simple square construction of white stone blocks, its overhanging roof supported by many pillars. Eddie thought again of the gladiator movies he’d so enjoyed as a kid. Susannah, educated in more formal schools, was reminded of the Parthenon.
Both saw and marvelled at the gorgeously sculpted bestiary— Bear and Turtle, Fish and Rat, Horse and Dog—which ringed the top of the building in two-by-two parade, and understood it was the place they had come to find.
That uneasy sensation that they were being watched by many eyes— eyes filled equally with hate and wonder—never left them. Thunder boomed as they came in sight of the monorail track; like the storm, the track came sweeping in from the south, joined The Street of the Turtle, and ran straight on toward the Cradle of Lud. And as they neared it, ancient bodies began to twist and dance in the strengthening wind on either side of them.

The next two fragments are again about turtle street:

A wide red strip had been painted across the pavement at the point where The Street of the Turtle emptied into The Plaza of the Cradle. Maud and the fellow Eddie called Jeeves the Butler stopped a prudent distance from the red mark.

When they were out of the downpour, Eddie paused and they looked back. The Plaza of the Cradle, The Street of the Turtle, and all the city beyond was rapidly disappearing into a shifting gray curtain. Eddie wasn’t a bit sorry.

Turtles as a comparison:

The mono was now flying through the mountain-range they had seen on the horizon: iron-gray peaks rushed toward them at suicidal speed, then fell away to disclose sterile valleys where gigantic beetles crawled about like landlocked turtles.

Author: XYuriTT

Terry Pratchett: A Life With Footnotes

Title: Terry Pratchett: A Life With Footnotes
Author(s): Rob Wilkins
Release year: 2022
Publisher: Transworld

Why in Database: Terry Pratchett’s biography, written by his longtime assistant, Rob Wilkins. He was the author of the series about Discworld, so of course, there are some mentions of turtles – although much more about real tortoises raised by Pratchett than the big space turtle, A’Tuin.

During an average working week in the Chapel, a vast amount of writing would get done, yet somehow, while the work was percolating in Terry’s mind, there also seemed to be plenty of time for activities that could only be filed under A for ‘Arsing Around’. There were, for example, the days spent devising ever more intricate and unnecessary ways to automate the office. There were the hours passed feeding the tortoises, or up at the local garden centre.

Terry shared the family home with, at various times, an almost entirely brainless spaniel, a tortoise named Pheidippides, after the original marathon runner, and a budgerigar called Chhota, but no further small Pratchetts joined them.

I go out to my car, extremely puzzled, and also quite worried. Have I done something wrong? Have I messed up somewhere? Have I misfiled something, or accidentally thrown something away? What’s my offence here? Have I been less than suitably subordinate to Patch, the office cat, also known as ‘the HR Department’? Have I run over one of the tortoises without realizing, driving in that morning? What the hell is it?

But that degree of separation didn’t seem to make either Lyn or him particularly happy, so in due course they found a flat to rent cheaply on the ground floor of an Edwardian house on Amersham Hill in High Wycombe, moving in along with a growing collection of tortoises, who also commuted.
The tortoises were Terry’s fault: he had discovered that he could not see a tortoise without forming the urge to ‘rescue’ it. This first happened in a pet shop in the Frogmore district of High Wycombe, and would happen in several other pet shops thereafter until the collection of rescued tortoises stood at around ten – some of the Mediterranean breed, some spur-thighed. Years later, Terry would still be prone to this rescuing urge. On tour in Glasgow in the 1990s, he released a tortoise soon to be known as Big Spotty from its captivity in a city centre pet shop – and was then appalled when someone at the airport told him he couldn’t board his plane with it*. ‘You can’t stop me,’ Terry said, rather grandly. ‘This is Great Britain.’ Big Spotty flew with Terry to Southampton.
Under this new commuting arrangement, Lyn found clerical work in High Wycombe. The pair of them would do their jobs all week and then on Friday, which was the slow day, post-publication, at the Bucks Free Press, Terry would try to get away early, and they would box up the tortoises, load them into the Morris van and head for the west country, mostly by the back roads and with a stop for fish and chips in Marlborough where, according to Terry, ‘the chippy was particularly good.’ They would split their life in this way for eighteen months.

One of the footnotes:

These were the days, clearly, before the invention of the ‘emotional support tortoise’. Carrying land-dwelling reptiles onto aircraft is presumably a far simpler project now.

Następny fragment znów dotyczy kręcących się po włościach żółwi:

Wine bottles stood fermenting around the gas fire in the sitting room, just behind the tortoises in the priority queue for warmth and with Terry and Lyn forming a third, outer ring beyond that.

If only there was a job Terry could find in which he felt as comfortable as he did at the Bucks Free Press, but which was within reach of Rowberrow and which didn’t force him, Lyn and the tortoises to take their chances each weekend with the Friday night traffic on Marlow Hill. If he could find the right job in the west country, then surely everything would be perfect.

There were cats and there were tortoises, of course – and sometimes, when slippers were left to warm by the open fire, the tortoises would spot an opportunity and crawl into them. More dangerously, the tortoises might even creep at night into the fire’s still-warm embers, so you had to be careful, when you re-lit the fire in the morning, that you weren’t accidentally using a tortoise for kindling. According to Lyn, there was at least one occasion when a tortoise had to be urgently run under the cold tap in the kitchen.

One of the footnotes:

Ringworld, a torus, a million miles wide, surrounding a star rather than orbiting it, clearly feeds into Discworld, albeit without the supporting elephants and turtle. Terry and Larry Niven met some years later and got along well. Niven seemed to regard Strata as a homage to his work, and Terry afterwards described Niven to Dave Busby as resembling ‘a small, stuffed owl’, which was by no means necessarily a pejorative description in Terry’s hands.

It’s safe to say that, during Lyn and Terry’s first decade in Rowberrow, activities such as wool-spinning, cheese-making, beekeeping and tortoiseraising took precedence over watching the television.

Colin Smythe Limited brought out the hardback of The Colour of Magic in November 1983. ‘In a distant and second-hand set of dimensions, in an astral plane that was never meant to fly, the curling star-mists waver and part …’ And here in public for the first time was Terry Pratchett’s Discworld, a flat planet borne through space on the backs of four elephants – Berilia, Tubul, Great T’Phon and Jerakeen – who are themselves positioned on the back of the giant star turtle Great A’Tuin, an arrangement quietly borrowed by Terry from Indian mythology* and which was somehow fundamental to what went on in the book and, at the same time, almost completely beside the point. The Colour of Magic introduced the inept wizard Rincewind, and Twoflower the tourist, and the Luggage, and the concept of Octarine, the eighth colour of the Discworld spectrum, visible only to wizards and cats. It also introduced the concept of being spectacularly funny in a Fantasy novel. And it was spectacularly funny because its real subject, in the end, wasn’t elephants or astronomically huge turtles or wizards, nor even cats, but human foibles, which its author clearly, even though he was still honing his craft, had found a unique way to expose and articulate.

Ponownie kawałek z przypisu, o obecności żółwi w mitologii:

‘I filched it,’ as Terry wrote, ‘and ran away before the alarms went off.’ Indian mythology may merely have been the place where the world-on-a-turtle image was most prominent. Terry’s further explorations indicated that practically every mythology you could find had a soft spot at some time in its life for turtles flying through space. And why not?

There would be plenty of scope for chickens and vegetables and fruit and tortoises and owl boxes, and also sheep.

At the same time, Great A’Tuin, the elephants, the Disc, the oceans flowing off the rim… you could see how it might work.

After about 20 minutes, the back door crashed open in a blast of cold, damp air. In came Terry in a full-length brown leather duster coat and a battered hat, entirely soaked and very bedraggled. He had been feeding the tortoises.

Terry had this idea for a Discworld novel with the working title ‘The Turtle Stops’. Great A’Tuin, the star turtle bearing the Disc, was going to become unwell. This would lead to an exploratory journey into the turtle, in preparation for which Terry had, needless to say, consulted a zoologist that he knew, John Chitty BVetMed Cert ZooMed CBiol MSB MRCVS, no less, in order to determine what, exactly, you would find if you ever ventured inside a turtle. But the pressing issue now was, how would the wizards of Unseen University come to know that Great A’Tuin was sick? We batted it back and forth between us in the office and then, that lunchtime, in the pub. Would there maybe be magical vibrations of some kind, which the wizards would be able to pick up? No. Too easy. Too close to Dr Who’s sonic screwdriver: not a proper solution.
So, what if, Terry suggested, it was possible to observe the slowing of the turtle’s interstellar paddling motion, from somewhere very high on the Disc?
This seemed problematic to me.
‘Terry, there would be nowhere on the Disc from which this phenomenon was visible.’
Terry was insistent. ‘Why not? They could sit on top of the Tower of Art, with a telescope.’
‘No, even then, they wouldn’t be in a position to see Great A’Tuin.’
‘Yes, they would,’ said Terry. ‘It’s the tallest building on the Disc!’
‘But it still wouldn’t be tall enough,’ I said. ‘It simply doesn’t work.’
In order to make my point, I grabbed a plate with the remainder of my lunch on it, balanced it on my fingertips and held it up between us.
‘OK, so my hand is the turtle, the plate is the Disc, the pea on the plate is the tower. There is no way that anyone standing on that pea is going to be in a position to see my hand under the plate.’

On the way back, Terry makes an unannounced detour to the greenhouse and attends to the tortoises for a while.

At some point after midnight, following a day of gaming and dealing with tortoises and fiddling about in the greenhouse and stomping around at the garden centre, Terry has laid down this concluding passage, perfectly answering the brief.

It was the same when we were writing a passage towards what would have become The Turtle Stops and needed to take the reader inside Great A’Tuin.
‘Terry, we’re inside the star turtle. What do we see?’
‘It’s as big as a cathedral.’
‘Bigger, surely …’
‘It’s as big as a city.’
‘Bigger than that, too, surely …’

Which is deeply saddening, of course. All those books he never got to write! All those books we never got to read! How many of them might there have been? Several were already underway: ‘Raising Taxes’; ‘Running Water’; ‘The Turtle Stops’; a second volume of adventures for the Amazing Maurice; ‘What Dodger Did Next’;

Author: XYuriTT

The Unseen University Challenge

Title: The Unseen University Challenge
Author(s): Terry Pratchett, David Langford
Release year: 1996
Publisher: Victor Gollancz

Why in Database: A book to test your knowledge about the Discworld.
Below we present all the fragments in which we found some turtle elements. For clarity, we present them as: “name of the category of questions”, question/riddle (sometimes resulting from the description of a given category of questions, e.g. “indicate the earthly equivalent of a given character”, we do not quote these descriptions), answer.
In addition to the text layer, the English edition also includes three graphics with a turtle, one at the very beginning, on the title page and two inside.

Faculty of Adhesive ultimates
7 High velocity tortoise impact.
7 Exquisitor Vorbis in Small Gods.

Faculty of Ley Lines
1 Galileo?
1 ‘Nevertheless it does move,’ Galileo supposedly said after being forced by the Inquisition to recant his belief that the Earth orbited the Sun… but he cautiously said it under his breath and in Italian (Eppur si muove). Elsewhere, the Quisition of the Church of the Great God Om takes a hard line with those asserting the heresy that Discworld is flat and propped up by four elephants standing on a space-traversing turtle (which it is). And freethinkers like the philosopher Didactylos say, ‘The Turtle moves.’ (Small Gods)”

Here, unusually, we quote the description of the category and the answer, which is somewhat additional, there is no “question” related to it.

Faculty of Numerology
It is completely unknown that Discworld has its own version of the celebrated counting song ‘Green Grow the Rushes-o’. Naturally, the most extended verse begins ‘I’ll sing you twelve-o, Brown flows the Ankh-o… What are your twelve-o? Twelve for the something-or-other’ – and goes rapidly downhill to ‘One is one is Great A’Tuin and evermore shall be so’. From the list below you should be able to reconstruct the lines (which don’t all scan very well, or at all*) and put them in order.
One is one is Great A’Tuin and evermore shall be so – but you don’t get a mark for that one, cully.

Faculty of Parazoology
3 A Witch’s familiar that was interestingly named Lightfoot
3 A tortoise, or tortoyse – incredibly old and knowing many secrets, or so the salesman told its purchaser Magrat. (Wyrd Sisters)

Faculty of Ley Lines II
4 Aeschylus
4 According to legend, Aeschylus – of Greek tragedy fame – died when an eagle inconsiderately dropped a tortoise on his head. Now see the finale of Small Gods…

Faculty of Continuum Ontology II
8 Three legges of an mermade, the hair of an tortoise, the teeth of an fowel, and ______.
8 The winges of a snake – Broomfog’s definition of a chimera. (Sourcery)

Faculty of Morphic Resonance II
10 Moules (as defined in the Dictionary of Eye-Watering Words) and Zeno of Elea.
10 Yes, of course it was on the tip of your tongue. Zeno of Elea (495-435 BC) boggled Greek philosophers with mischievous paradoxes ‘proving’ that, for example, an arrow in flight cannot move and that the notorious sprinter Achilles would never be able to overtake a tortoise. Discworld’s Xeno of Ephebe, being more practical, set up his Axiom Testing Station (CAUTION – UNRESOLVED POSTULATES) to demonstrate that it is impossible for an arrow in flight to overtake a tortoise. Result: a lot of tortoises on sticks. Clearly the whole experimental procedure is a game of skill and dexterity involving tortoises – which is the Dictionary of Eye-Watering Words’s definition of ‘moules’. (Pyramids, Guards! Guards!)

Faculty of Spellaeology
10 The proper hatching of turtle eggs.
10 All eight nameless spells from the primal grimoire the Octavo. (The Light Fantastic)

Faculty of Probabiity analysis
5 It was a million-to-onr chance, with any luck.
5 Om, in his tortoise incarnation, getting to the Citadel in time via eagle-lift. (Small gods)

Faculty of Fregology
8 Turtles
8 Eight new turtes are hatched when Great A’Tuin approaches the red star. (The Light Fantastic)

Faculty of Clairaudience IV
9 I old oo, ugger ogg!
9 The great god Om in tortoise form, instructing a scalbie bird to bugger off while busy biting its foot. (Small Gods)

This excerpt and “Faculty” contains hints for all questions, it include the name of the department, the page it is on, the question number and the hint.

Faculty of Musicology
Ley Lines II (pg 85) 4. Tortoise.
Morphic Resonance II (pg 116) 10 tortoises

This fragment comes from the final part, after the quiz part:

Nor indeed has a golden turtle been buried somewhere in the Sto Plains for followers of the hidden clues to trace and dig up.

Author: XYuriTT

Planet Earth II: A New World Revealed

Title: Planet Earth II: A New World Revealed
Author(s): Stephen Moss
Release year: 2016
Publisher: BBC Books

Why in Database: A supplementary book for the nature series Planet Earth II. There are several turtle fragments and two full-page photos.

The first turtle reference is in a foreword by David Attenborough:

It was a blissful time for those of us making natural history programmes. Even in Africa, where many of the animals were so familiar, we could easily find creatures that were quite new to most viewers – porcupines, chameleons and turtles. And if we went to other continents there were all kinds of astonishments – wombats and narwhals, hummingbirds and armadillos, manatees and sloths.

The jaguar is an excellent swimmer and, like most big cats, an opportunist, hunting a wide range of prey, from freshwater turtles and armadilos, to capybaras and deer.

In the absence of of their old predators or competitors, many animals (and plants) have developed unusual characteristics. Some are bigger than their mainland cousins – the Galapagos tortoises, for example.

The biggest tortoise

Small may not always be the best route to survival on an island, and many creatures display the opposite trait: they become giants. Nowhere is this more apparent than on the Galápagos Islands. Off the Pacific coast of South America, straddling the equator, the Galápagos gained their worldwide fame as the cradle of evolutionary theory when Charles Darwin visited in the 1830s. Observing the strange life forms he encountered, adapted to different situations, led him to develop his theory of evolution through natural selection.

Of all the creatures he came across, few were as impressive as the giant tortoises. They weigh on average roughly the same as three grown men. Once, these huge reptiles roamed across many of the world’s continents, but today they are only found on two island groups, separated by thousands of miles of sea: Aldabra in the Indian Ocean, and the Galápagos, where they live on 7 of the 21 islands. These reptiles are not only huge but also among the longest lived of any animal surviving more than a century in the wild (up to 170 years in captivity). Of the 13 known races, 11 survive today.
Like many of the other creatures on the Galápagos, the giant tortoises were castaways, drifting across the ocean from mainland South America. They managed to travel such a distance – some 1000km (620 miles) – because they float and can survive for several months without food or water. Helped by ocean currents, though some would have drifted westwards, enough made landfall for a viable population to become established.
Darwin was stunned by the size of these reptiles, noting in his journal that it took up to eight men to lift a tortoise. So why are they so big? One theory suggests that only the largest tortoises could have survived such a difficult sea crossing, as their large volume to surface area ratio would have allowed them to retain fluids, while their longer necks meant they could breathe more easily.
The other notable feature is how the shape of their shells differs. The shapes seem to correlate with the habitat of the island on which they live: those on lush, well-vegetated islands have domed shells and shorter necks; those on dry, desert-like islands have ‘saddleback’ shells and long necks. Presumably, where there is plenty of low-growing vegetation, the animals can easily reach their food, while on drier islands, they may need to reach up to get to taller vegetation such as the abundant prickly pear cactus. However, other scientists have suggested that this may be a coincidence and that the saddleback shell shape is actually a product of sexual selection, a result of generations of females preferring males with a higher front to their shell and longer necks. But then two races that have a similar shape may not necessarily be very closely related, which tends to suggest that they have evolved in response to the type of habitat in which they live.
Famously, at the time of his visit, Darwin falled to appreciate the differences in shell-shape between each island tortoises. Only when he returned to England did he develop his theory; and then, to his eternal regret, he found that he had not always labelled the tortoise shells he had collected with the name of the island where it had been found – thus making the specimens far less useful for determining whether his assumptions were correct.
When the islands were discovered in the sixteenth century there were as many as a quarter of a million giant tortoises; today there are just a few thousand. But with better habitat conservation, and the removal of introduced animals, their future now looks more assured.

The text below is a description of the picture of the Aldabra tortoise, which is shown next to the long text quoted above:

The biggest survivor. Aldabra giant tortoise, on the remote Indian Ocean atoll of Aldabra – part of the Seychelles group. It is more than a metre long (more than 3 feet), and is the only species of giant tortoise to have survived in this part of the world, the others having been hunted to extinction by visiting seafarers or settlers or their habitat destroyed by introduced animals accompanying humans. These giants can live for more than 100 years, probably more than 150.

So long as the niche you fill is unocuppied, it makes sound evolutionary sense to be either tiny or, if you are a tortoise on the Galapagos or Aldabra, very large indeed.

Turtles have been coming to Barbados to lay their eggs for thousands of years, but now light from the holiday resorts is throwing the hatchlings off track. On emerging, they need to head to the water as fast as they can to avoid being picked off by predators such as gulls. They have evolved to head to the brightest horizon – the water reflecting the light of the moon. But today the brightest glow comes from the hotels and restaurants, which takes the hatchlings in exactly the wrong direction. Red crabs then gather under the streetlights, picking them off before they ever reach the sea. For these turtles, which have seen urbanization take over their once-pristine natural nurseries, the future would be bleak were it not for the conservationists who are helping the hatchlings make it to the sea.

The caption for the second turtle photo in the book, with a leatherback turtle, placed next to the text above:

Lure of the nightlight. On Juno Beach, Florida, a leatherback sea turtle hauls up to lay her eggs. When the baby turtles hatch, they head for the brightest horizon, which should be the natural glow of moon on the sea. But light from beachfront development can lead them off course, and wandering hatchlings can be hit by cars or caught by predators.

On the Caribbean island of Barbados (as on the beaches elsewhere), hatchling turtles are so confused by the lights of beach developments that they head away from the sea rather than towards it, and the shoots at night mostly recorded baby turtles dying in street gutters.

Author: XYuriTT

House of Chains

Title: House of Chains
Author(s): Steven Erikson
Release year: 2002
Publisher: Tor Books

Why in Database: The fourth volume of the Malazan Book of the Fallen contains only one turtle fragment, with a real, large walking animal:

The huge tortoise was the only object to break the flat plain, lumbering with the infinite patience of the truly mindless across the ancient seabed. Twin shadows grew to flank it.
‘Too bad there’s not two of them,’ Trull Sengar said, ‘then we could ride in style.’
‘I would think,’ Onrack replied, as they slowed their pace to match that of the tortoise, ‘that it feels the same.’
‘Hence this grand journey … indeed, a noble quest, in which I find a certain sympathy.’
‘You miss your kin, then, do you, Trull Sengar?’
‘Too general a statement.’
‘Ah, the needs of procreation.’

Source: Mossar, Developed: XYuriTT

Memories of Ice

Title: Memories of Ice
Author(s): Steven Erikson
Release year: 2001
Publisher: Tor Books

Why in Database: The third volume of the Malazan Book of the Fallen, as with most volumes, here we found some turtle fragments, six to be specific, we quote them all below.

The first fragment is about armors made from turtle shells:

Perhaps the strangest group of warriors Paran had seen was the Gilk. Their hair was cut in stiff, narrow wedges and they wore armour assembled from the plates of some kind of tortoise. Distinctively short and stout for Barghast, they looked to the captain to be a match for any heavy infantry they might face.

Druga w takim samym kontekście:

As the Beklites and Betaklites rushed the walls, the ladder-bearing Desandi among them, Itkovian gave the command for counterfire from the walls and block towers. The ensuing slaughter was horrific. The attackers had not bothered with turtles or other forms of cover, and so died in appalling droves.

The third is probably in the context of combat formation.

Eyes snapping open, Itkovian heard that whisper. He saw, with a vision filling his awareness, to the exclusion of all else, as the barbed heads plunged into the shielded turtle that was the Grey Swords. Shafts slipped through here and there. Soldiers reeled, fell, folded in on themselves.

Fourth is about armors:

The Barahn were the first to break. Witnessing the ensuing slaughter of their kin had solidified the resolve of the Ahkrata, and they held until midday, when Taur detached the Gilk from the drive into the city and sent the turtle-shell-armoured warriors to their aid.

Fifth is about combat formation:

‘The main ramp,’ Quick Ben said, rising to join the captain. He tapped a finger on the map. ‘The one they’d planned on using for the downward march to launch the ambush. No cover for them, but if they can lock shields out front and turtle … well, there’s only forty of us …’

Sixth probably also is about combat formation:

Down among the trees Paran could now see movement, ragged lines of Pannions climbing towards them. No shield-lines, no turtles – the toll among the Beklites, once they closed to attack, would be fearful.

Source: Mossar, Developed: XYuriTT

The Crippled God

Title: The Crippled God
Author(s): Steven Erikson
Release year: 2011 (
Publisher: Tor Books

Why in Database: The last, tenth volume of the Malazan Book of the Fallen. We found turtle elements in the three fragments quoted below. In addition, the word “shell” is also mentioned a few times, it means turtle shells, but without explicit clarification, we did not count these as turtle-fragments.

Abrastal and Warchief Spax were waiting outside the queen’s tent, and Aranict studied them as she and Brys approached. Both were arrayed in their full regalia, the queen looking imperial though the hair on one side of her head was shorn away, and the Gilk Warchief festooned in weapons and wearing an ankle-length cloak made of turtle shells.

‘They betrayed us,’ Diligence said, studying Tanakalian. ‘Many Pures died at their hand. Tell me, these Gilk – are they in the habit of wearing armour?’
‘Turtle shell, yes – most strange.’
‘Gillankai! Their hands are drenched in the blood of Pures!’

‘We more or less worked that one out,’ Spax said. The Gilk Warchief was in full turtleshell armour, his face painted white, the eyes rimmed in deep red ochre.

Source: Mossar, Developed: XYuriTT

Discworld Companions – Comparison

So far, five different Discworld companions have been released (the fifth also got an exclusive edition released in 2022, “Dunmanifestin Edition” which, due to the differences, can be counted as a separate entity and the sixth guide, it contains some additional entries (from the Science of the Discworld series) and specially made illustrations, but we do not have access to this edition at the moment), these are:

The Discworld Companion released in 1994
The Discworld Companion Updated released in 1997
The New Discworld Companion released in 2002
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Farreleased in 2012
The Ultimate Discworld Companion released in 2021

Each title above is a link to a note focusing on a specific edition, while in this text we look at the differences between them, based on the topic we are interested in, i.e. elements related to turtles.

Shortcuts to individual parts of the text:
Encyclopedic part:
Summary of the encyclopedic part
Additional texts
Illustrations


Encyclopedic part:
Entry: Astrolabe

Astrolabe. One of the Disc’s finest astrolabes is kept in a large, star-filled room in KRULL. It includes the entire Great A’Tuin-Elephant-Disc system wrought in brass and picked out with tiny jewels.
Around it the stars and planets wheel on fine silver wires. On the walls the constellations have been made of tiny phosphorescent seed pearls set out on vast tapestries of jet-black velvet. These were, of course, the constellations current at the time of the room’s decoration – several would be unrecognisable now owing to the Turtle’s movement through space. The planets are minor bodies of rock picked up and sometimes discarded by the system as it moves through space, and seem to have no other role in Discworld astronomy or astrology than to be considered a bloody nuisance.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – Without that entry
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions except for the third, in which it was not present.


Entry: Astrozoologists

Astrozoologists. Krullian scientists interested in studying the nature of the Great A’TUIN. Specifically, its sex.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – Without that entry
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions except for the third, in which it was not present.


Entry: A’Tuin, the Great

A’Tuin, the Great. The star turtle who carries the Discworld on its back. Ten-thousand-mile-long member of the species Chelys galactica, and the only turtle ever to feature on the Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram. Almost as big as the Disc it carries. Sex unknown.
Shell-frosted with frozen methane, pitted with meteor craters and scoured with asteroidal dust, its eyes are like ancient seas, crusted with rheum. Its brain is the size of a continent, through which thoughts move like glittering glaciers.
It is as large as worlds. As patient as a brick. Great A’Tuin is the only creature in the entire universe that knows exactly where it is going.
Upon its back stand Berilia, Tubul, Great T’Phon and Jerakeen, the four giant elephants upon whose shoulders the disc of the world rests. A tiny sun and moon spin around them on a complicated orbit to induce seasons, although probably nowhere else in the multiverse is it sometimes necessary for an elephant to cock its leg to allow the sun to go past.
After the events of The Light Fantastic, the Great A’Tuin was orbited by eight baby turtles, each with four small world-elephant calves and tiny discworlds, covered in smoke and volcanoes. They have subsequently begun their own cosmic journeys.
Wizards have tried to tune into Great A’Tuin’s mind. They trained up on tortoises and giant sea turtles to get the hang of the Chelonian mind. But although they knew that the Great A’Tuin’s mind would be big, they rather foolishly hadn’t realised it would be slow. After thirty years all they found out was that the Great A’Tuin was looking forward to something.
People have asked: How does the Disc move on the shoulders of the elephants? What does the Turtle eat? One may as well ask: What kind of smell has yellow got? It is how things are.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text and unique picture.
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions, in the last one there is also an additional graphic.


Entry: Brutha

(…) When the Great God OM was trapped in the form of a tortoise, Brutha – whose quiet and unquestioning belief meant he was the only person left in the entire country who could hear the god speak – carried him round in a wickerwork box slung over his shoulder. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text

(…) When the Great God OM was trapped in the form of a tortoise, Brutha – whose quiet and unquestioning belief meant he was the only person left in the entire country who could hear the god speak – carried him round in a wickerwork box slung over his shoulder. After many adventures, both prospered in their chosen spheres. (…)

The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: The entry is almost identical, starting from the second edition, it have one additional sentence.


Entry: Calendars

Calendars (The discworld year). The calendar on a planet which is flat and revolves on the back of four giants elephants is always
difficult to establish.
It can be derived, though, by starting with the fact that the spin year – defined by the time taken for a
point on the Rim to turn one full circle – is about 800 days long. The tiny sun orbits in a fairly flat
ellipse, being rather closer to the surface of the disc at the rim than at the Hub (thus making the Hub
rather cooler than the rim). This ellipse is stable and stationary with respect to the Turtle – the sun
passes between two of the elephants. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – Without that entry
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: The entry is identical in content in all editions except for the third, in which it was absent. In the other ones, there is a slight difference in the way the word “THE DISCWORLD YEAR” is printed, in the first two it is written in lowercase letters and in parentheses, in the fourth it is in capital letters, with a colon and with some additional space, in the final edition also in capital letters and with a additional space, but without a colon.


Entry: Caroc cards

Caroc cards. Distilled wisdom of the Ancients. Deck of cards used on the Discworld for fortune telling and for card games (see CRIPPLE MR ONION). Cards named in the Discworld canon include The Star, The Importance of Washing the Hands (Temperance), The Moon, The Dome of the Sky, The Pool of Night (the Moon), Death, the Eight of Octograms, the Four of Elephants, the Ace of Turtles.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: The entry is identical in all editions. In addition, in the first four, the image of these cards can be seen as a background picture for the letter C, which of course is showed at the beginning of the section with entries starting with that letter.


Entry: Chimera

Chimera. A desert creature, with the legs of a mermaid, the hair of a tortoise, the teeth of a fowl, the wings of a snake, the breath of a furnace and the temperament of a rubber balloon in a hurricane. Clearly a magical remnant. It is not known whether chimera breed and, if so, with what.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Chelonauts

Chelonauts. Men who journey – or at least intend to journey – below the Rim to explore the mysteries of the Great A’TUIN. Their suits are of fine white leather, hung about with straps and brass nozzles and other unfamiliar and suspicious contrivances. The leggings end in high, thick-soled boots, and the arms are shoved into big supple gauntlets. Topping it all is a big copper helmet designed to fit on the heavy collars around the neck of the suits. The helmet has a crest of white feathers on top and a little glass window in front.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Death, House of

(…) In one corner and dominating the room, however, is a large disc of the world. This magnificent feature is complete down to solid silver elephants standing on the back of a Great A’TUIN cast in bronze and more than a metre long. The rivers are picked out in veins of jade, the deserts are powdered diamonds and the most notable cities are picked out in precious stones.(…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text, but with the “yard” in place of “metre”
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: The entry is almost identical in all editions, the only slight difference is that in the third edition, instead of “more than a meter long” we have “more than a yard long“.


Entry: Discworld, the

(…) And there, below the mines and sea-ooze and fake fossil bones put there (most people believe) by a
Creator with nothing better to do than upset archaeologists and give them silly ideas, is Great A’TUIN.
(…)
The Discworld should not exist. Flatness is not a natural state for a planet. Turtles should grow only
so big. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This fragments of this extended entry that we quote, which contain the turtle references, are identical in all editions. The fifth edition also includes picture.


Entry: Gamblers’ Guild

Gamblers’ Guild. Motto: EXCRETVS EX FORTVNA. (Loosely speaking: ‘Really Out of Luck’.) Coat of arms: A shield, gyronny. On its panels, turnwise from upper sinister: a sabre or on a field sable; an octagon gules et argent on a field azure; a tortue vert on a field sable; an ‘A’ couronnée on a field argent; a sceptre d’or on a field sable, a calice or on a field azure; a piece argent on a field gules; an elephant gris on a field argent. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.In the first four editions there is a picture with a coat of arms.


Entry: Granny’s Cottage

(…) On the bed itself is a patchwork quilt which looks like a flat tortoise. It was made by Gordo SMITH and was given to Miss Weatherwax by ESK’S mother one HOGSWATCHNIGHT. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Krull

(…) The Krullians once had plans to lower a vessel over the Edge to ascertain the sex of the Great A’TUIN.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Morecombe

Morecombe. A vampire. The solicitor of the RAMKIN family. Scrawny, like a tortoise; very pale, with pearly, dead eyes.

The Discworld Companion – The above text

Morecombe. A vampire, although obviously housetrained. He is the solicitor of the RAMKIN family, and senior member of the firm Morecombe, Slant and Honeyplace. Scrawny around the neck, like a tortoise; very pale, with pearly, dead eyes.

The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text, bit more extensive than in the first edition.

Morecombe, Schwarzlache von. A vampire, although obviously housetrained. He has been the RAMKIN family’s solicitor for more than 400 years, and is senior member of the firm Morecombe, Slant and Honeyplace. Scrawny around the neck, like a tortoise; very pale, with pearly, dead eyes.

The New Discworld Companion – The above text, even more elaborate and with the added last name!
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The same text as in The Discworld Companion, which is, you can say a regression in relation to the third edition.
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The same text as in The Discworld Companion
Summary: The most diverse entry within the Companions, appearing in as many as three versions, the second, fourth and fifth editions have identical text, the first edition has a different one and the third also different. The fact that the information from the third issue was later ignored may be quite puzzling.


Entry: Oats, Quite Reverend
The Discworld Companion – Without that entry
The Discworld Companion Updated – Without that entry

(…) He also wore a holy turtle pendant and carried a finely printed graduation copy of the Book of Om, which he unfortunately mislaid during the events of Carpe Jugulum. (…)

The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: The entry is identical in the three editions of the Companion, in the first two it is absent, because it refers to a character from the book Carpe Jugulum, not yet published at the time of their publication, so this absence is not the result of cutting out, as in some cases.


Entry: Om

Om. The Great God Om. He has a vast church in Kom, OMNIA. When he is first encountered, he is a small tortoise with one beady eye and a badly chipped shell. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text

Om. The Great God Om. When he is first encountered, he is a small tortoise with one beady eye and a badly chipped shell. (…)

The New Discworld Companion – The above text, slightly shortened when compared to the version from the first Companions
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: In the first two editions, the entry is a bit longer, in the next three it is the same text, but shortened by one sentence. There is a graphic in the fifth edition.


Entry: Potent Voyager

Potent Voyager. Vessel constructed by DACTYLOS to take two chelonauts out over the Rim to determine the sex of the Great A’TUIN. A huge bronze space ship, without any motive power other than the ability to drop.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Rimbow

(…) The Rimbow hangs in the mists just beyond the edge of the world, appearing only at morning and evening when the light of the Disc’s little orbiting sun shines past the massive bulk of the Great A’TUIN and strikes the Disc’s magical field at exactly the right angle.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Simony, Sergeant

Simony, Sergeant. Sergeant in the Divine Legion in OMNIA and a follower of the Turtle Movement.(…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Turtle, the Great

Turtle, the Great. (See A’TUIN, GREAT.)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Turtle Movement

Turtle Movement. A secret society in OMNIA which believes that the Disc is flat and is carried
through space on the backs of four elephants and a giant turtle. Their secret recognition saying is ‘The
Turtle Moves’. Their secret sign is a left-hand fist with the right hand, palm extended, brought down
on it. Most of the senior officials of the Omnian church are members of the ‘movement’, but since they
all wear hoods and are sworn to absolute secrecy each thinks he is the only one.

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text
The New Discworld Companion – The above text
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: This entry is identical in all editions.


Entry: Zodiac

(…) It would be more correct to say that there are always sixty-four signs in the Discworld zodiac but also that these are subject to change. Stars immediately ahead of the Turtle’s line of flight change their position only very gradually, as do the ones aft. The ones at right angles, however, may easily alter their relative positions in the lifetime of the average person, so there is a constant need for an updating of the Zodiac. This is done for the STO PLAINS by Unseen University, but communications with distant continents (who in any case have their own interpretations of the apparent shapes in the sky) are so slow that by the time any constellation is known Discwide it has already gone past. (…)

The Discworld Companion – The above text
The Discworld Companion Updated – The above text

(…) It would be more correct to say that there are always sixty-four signs in the Discworld zodiac but also that these are subject to change without notice. Stars immediately ahead of the Turtle’s line of flight change their position only very gradually, as do the ones aft. The ones at right angles, however, may easily alter their relative positions in the lifetime of the average person, so there is a constant need for an updating of the Zodiac. This is done for the STO PLAINS by Unseen University, but communications with distant continents (who in any case have their own interpretations of the apparent shapes in the sky) are so slow that by the time any constellation is known Discwide it has already gone past. (…)

The New Discworld Companion – The above text, but differs by adding two words, “without notice”
Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far – The above text
The Ultimate Discworld Companion – The above text
Summary: The text is almost identical in all editions, the only difference is that the third and subsequent editions have an additional two words, in these are subject to change without notice a bold fragment has been added.


Summary of the encyclopedic part
Entries identical in all editions:
– Chimera
– Chelonauts
– Death, House of (identical, except for the 3rd edition where there is “yard” instead of “metre”)
– Discworld, the (At least turtle parts of this entrie are identical)
– Granny’s Cottage
– Krull
– Potent Voyager
– Rimbow
– Simony, Sergeant
– Turtle, the Great
– Turtle Movement

Entries identical in editions 1-2 and 4-5 but absent in 3:
– Astrolabe
– Astrozoologists
– Calendars (there are only minimal differences in using of capital letters or not)

Entries are identical in all editions, but in the fifth edition pictures were added or subtracted:
– A’Tuin, the Great (picture added)
– Caroc cards (the graphic was at the beginning of section, as a background for the letter C, replaced in the fifth)
– Gamblers’ Guild (picture added)

Entry that has differences between editions, where the picture was also added in the fifth edition:
– Om

Entries with differences between editions:
– Brutha (editions 2-5 have one extra sentence)
– Morecombe (probably the most diverse entry)
– Zodiac

Entry appearing from the 3rd edition upward
– Oats, Quite Reverend


Additional texts
Each of the editions, apart from the encyclopedic part, had some additional texts, sometimes an interview, always an introduction. Details below:

The Discworld Companion
Before the encyclopedic part:
“Turtles all the Way” – Almost identical text to one in “The Discworld Companion Updated” but with some minimal differences.
“About the companion” – This text serves the same purpose as the text with the same title from the second edition and text titled “”Where am I?” from the third and next editions. They are all a bit different, each is a introduction they get also expanded with new book titles, etc.
After the encyclopedic part:
“A brief history of Discworld” – Text unique to this edition.
“Terry Pratchett: The Definitive Interview” – In theory, this text was reprinted in “Turtle Recall” so it should be identical, but reprinted one has some extra questions etc., so there are some differences.
“Fans and Fanmail” – As above, In theory this text was reprinted in “Turtle Recall” (as “Readers and Fan Mail”) so it should be identical, but there are some differences, the reprint have more text.

The Discworld Companion Updated
Before the encyclopedic part:
“Turtles all the Way” – Almost identical text to that in “The Discworld Companion” but there are some minimal differences.
“About the companion” – This text serves the same purpose as the text with the same title from the first edition and text titled “”Where am I?” from the third and next editions. They are all a bit different, each is a introduction they get also expanded with new book titles, etc.
After the encyclopedic part:
„The Definitive Interview II: The Author Strikes Back” – Text unique to this edition.

The New Discworld Companion
Before the encyclopedic part:
“Where am I?” – This text serves the same purpose as the “About the companion” text with the same title from the first two editions, under this new title it appears in the third and subsequent editions. They are all a bit different, each is a introduction they get also expanded with new book titles, etc.
After the encyclopedic part:
“The Terry Pratchett Interview: Discworld Quo Vadis?” – Text unique to this edition.

Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion…So Far
Before the encyclopedic part:
“Where am I?” – This text serves the same purpose as the “About the companion” text with the same title from the first two editions, under this new title it appears in the third and subsequent editions. They are all a bit different, each is a introduction they get also expanded with new book titles, etc.
After the encyclopedic part:
“Terry Pratchett: The Definitive Interview” – In theory, it’s a reprint of the interview from “The Discworld Companion”, in practice there are some differences, additional questions, etc.
“Readers and Fan Mail” – In theory it’s a reprint of “The Discworld Companion” (it was titled “Fans and Fanmail” there), in practice there are some differences, extra content etc.
“The Language Barrier” – Text unique to this edition.
“Cripple Mr onion” – Text unique to this edition.

The Ultimate Discworld Companion
Before the encyclopedic part:
“Where am I?” – This text serves the same purpose as the “About the companion” text with the same title from the first two editions, under this new title it appears in the third and subsequent editions. They are all a bit different, each is a introduction they get also expanded with new book titles, etc.
“Illustrating Discworld” – Text unique to this edition.


Illustrations
The following three images appear in the first four Companions, but not in the fifth.

The graphics below (the letter A written in the turtle’s outline is used as an example, each of the letters of the alphabet at the beginning of the encyclopedic section for a given letter has such picture, with the appropriate letter of course) appear only in the fifth Companion.

Author: XYuriTT