From Discworld & Terry Pratchett Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Does that refer to the illustration of Nuggan (p156)? I can't find Flatulus in there. --Old Dickens 18:23, 16 July 2011 (CEST)

Hi again!

The picture of Nuggan you refer to, where he's holding what seems to be a puppet's control frame in his right hand - it's on page 140 in my edition, with a portrait of the Lady wreathed in golden light and rolling the dice on the opposite side.

My reference is the double-page spread of the Gods at play on pp 78-79 of the large-format Gollancz (2001) edition. This is such a big picture that not all of it fits on the two pages - it apparently "begins" on the far left with Offler the Crocodile-Headed God who is standing in front of an un-named god only whose eyes and forehead are visible - no real chance of an ident here. The left-to-right lineup is given on the next page, along with an additional portrait of the Goddess standing imediately to Offler's left on the original artwork - as it is too big to fit the page, this bit is carried over to page 80 and - confusingly - is reversed on page 81, possibly for symmetry.

Until you realise this, the left-to-right identification of the Gods gets bit confusing - it begins with Sessifret, the Djelibeybian Goddess of the Afternoon, and then Offler. Leading you to think at first glance "what are they on about, that's Offler, you can't mistake him for a Goddess even in the dimmest light!"

Then you realise from the context of the isolated picture of a blue-skinned and very definitively female deity on the next page that it's been cut off from the extreme left of the main picture - you see a continuation of the Game table and the left-hand side of Offler to act as visual cues.

as I say, the God standing behind Offler is a generic Deity who remains unidentified. Next to him is Fate of the deadly eyes. On his left is Urika, Goddess of Saunas, snow, and theatrical performances for fewer than 120 people (Nordic blonde with Maccalariat-style braided hair). Then it's Blind Io sitting on his throne. To the left of Io is Libertina, Goddess of the sea, apple pie, certain types of ice-cream and short lengths of string. To her left, The L**y (do not explore this idea further), and to her left (front) Topaxi, God of certain mushrooms and of great cosmic ideas people have while tripping that they always forget to write down afterwards and never remember again. Above him is Bibulous, God of wine and things on sticks; behind Bibulous is Patina, Goddess of wisdom, with attendant small penguin perched on her shoulder. To the left of Bibulous are (front) Nuggan, God of paperclips, un-necessary paperwork, stationery and Abominations to the people of Borogravia. And behind him is Bast, the Cat-Headed Deity of Cats and of half-digested things left to rot in inacessible places.

That's a summary of the roll-up of Gods transferred more or less verbatim from Page 80 of The Last Hero.

But it's not the whole story.

As an aside, look very closely at the orb hovering above the Game table in front of Fate, which at first might be taken for one of Blind Io's constellation of eyes. Look closely. It's actually a small sun, propelled by a dung-beetle. And then look to its left, into the space directly between Fate and Offler, just below Offler's gold-and-lapis-lazuli headress.

There is a small fat God in there, who is not identified in the official caption. A grey-haired elderly cherub, with a face that looks as if he's holding something in that he really, desperately, needs to get rid of. Elsewhere on the Net, he has been identified as Flatulus, and this does circumstantially) look as if it fits!

There are other hidden gems in this artwork. Libertina's trident looks dangeously close to doing the stufffed-olive-on-a-kebab thing to one of Io's eyeballs, and an empty jug is poised over the head of Nuggan with no apparent means of support. You wonder what might have been trimmed off the right-hand side of the original artwork to make it fit.

Hoping this helps the debate along!--AgProv 21:50, 16 July 2011 (CEST)

Ah. The soft-cover does identify Flatulus, between Offler and Fate. Apparently they corrected the omission. (His general description sounds a lot like Nuggan, a different blowhard.) --Old Dickens 22:28, 16 July 2011 (CEST)