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Where is Downtown?

In Night Watch, when talking about the Watch Houses, Knock says ...I hate to think what's happening downtown. I was wondering what is considered 'downtown'.

It is cetainly not the Dimwell Street (that is mentioned in the same conversation) or Treacle Mine Road and I would guess that it isn't Long Wall, Leastgate or Nap Hill either. So this leaves, the HQ (Isle of Gods), Chittling Street (The Shades) or Dolly Sisters areas.

The UU area, Esoteric Street down to the river (Street of Alchemist) would be my choice, though I haven't seen any mention of a Watch House in this area. Maybe it would be the whole of the Dolly Sisters and UU area.

Any ideas as to which area of Ankh-Morpork is considered 'Downtown'? --mikecook 20:00, 27 July 2006 (CEST)

"Downtown" usually means "down to the water", sometimes just the old, built-up area. In either case, this would likely be the Shades, which is also where Knock could expect the most trouble. ..Old Dickens 13:25 EST 5 Sep 2006

My initial thoughts were also that it meant the Shades. The problem seems that Knock would then be talking about something that is happening only a couple of streets away. In the conversation of Knock he was talking about people throwing stones at the Dimwell Street House when he mentions downtown. This would mean there should be a Watch House there. As they themselves are in the only watch house I know of in the area (Treacle Mine), why would he talk in that way about the Shades? This is why I think it is another part of the city.
Possibly it could be the located around The Drum, Short Street, Cheapside, Baker Street, etc. There seems to be a lot of commercial activity in this area. --mikecook 00:45, 6 September 2006 (CEST)

Dimwell seems to be across the river, so also "downtown" toward the sea. However, he doesn't have to be restricted to Watch houses. Treacle Mine Road is "uptown" (just) from the whole Shades. ..Old Dickens 20:20 EST 6 Sep 2006

...More haggling over the Shades, etc. - A quote from Men At Arms: "(Gaspode) was somewhere beyond the Shades, in the network of dock basins and cattle yards..." This sounds sensible; how could commerce go on if the Shades cut off all that dockland? Even the crazier Patricians wouldn't allow it. Does the Streets of A-M show the borders you give?

Haggle away my good man ;-) It is difficult to decide on what is and what isn't, possibly The Shades and the adjoining areas, all the way up to Short Street, would count as downtown.

The layout on the neighbourhoods image is exactly as shown on the Streets of A-M mapp. The Shades area is also labelled very similar but NO, it does not show the boundaries I give. Going off where the text is, the shape of the streets and the shape of the buildings (especially for the Shades) this is how I've created those boundaries.
I agree on the elevations - I have considered this as well as with working out the real size of the city. A few months back I spent a lot of time working out various possible sizes. I tried overlaying real world maps, satellite images and the such onto the A-M mapp. Once of my first attempts produced a diameter of around 5km. I can't now remember where but I'd heard the given size was 1.6km. To the bottom of it I created a 3D version of the mapp 3d-am.jpg :o) I also have scale models of some late medieval buildings and also one of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre. All these fitted on the map very nicely, the Globe theatre and Dysk fit together almost exact! This all worked to give a diameter of (approx) 1mile (1.6km).
Isn't the 1 million population for the whole of the city, which includes the areas outside of the city walls?
Alas, all this experimentation and research takes time. Once I've finished reading the last two DW books I will go on a research gathering re-read of all the Ankh-Morpork books. Some of which I haven't read since they were originally released! --mikecook 19:37, 19 September 2006 (CEST)

I've studied The Streets for a while now, and I see the borders you show are much the same, Therefore, I'm more convinced that The Shades, where even the Watch dare not go, is only a ghetto within the greater left-bank dock area named after it. Within the area of the map shaded dull pink, marked "The Shades" are :

Hubward Central area : Mrs Palm's, a major tourist attraction, and The Whore Pits; The Troll's Head, an unsavory pub, probably on the edge of no-man's land.

Widdershins side  : Industrial; Chalky and Igneous The Trolls.

Central River  : Harga's House of Ribs

Rimward  : Cattle Market, Pork Futures Warehouse, Grabpot Thundergust

Most of the perimeter of the ward is occupied by various commercial activities, which must attract business from the rest of the city, leaving the probability that the no - go area The Shades is perhaps Rimward from The Troll's Head almost centered in the pink area around Shamlegger Street? ..Old Dickens 15:40 7 Oct 2006

Coat of arms

I added the coat of arm but how do I get rid of that code that's popped up?--Teletran 16:59, 20 February 2007 (CET)

Ok fixed that now there's a box. D'oh!--Teletran 17:29, 20 February 2007 (CET)

The rehabilitation of Cecil Nobbs

(Re: edit of 26 Feb.2009.) Since we first encountered him at the age of ten, trying to pick Lady Roberta's pocket, Nobby has a long and well documented history of stealing anything not closely guarded, from the quartermaster's stores of Pseudopolis to his co-workers' tea money. Well-known fact, that is. --Old Dickens 18:10, 26 February 2009 (UTC)


More quibbles: Topsy Lavish considered $150/yr as too poor to use the bank. That's 37.5 decimal pence per day; these people are too poor to breathe. These might be domestic servants getting room and board as well. Many other references suggest a typical working-class wage around $1/day or $350/yr.
`Where is Vetinari's "extremely wealthy and powerful" family? We've only ever heard of one aunt, no land, no money, no power. Presumably they had some money once, and Havelock may be wealthy, but he would consider supporting the city with his own money an admission of failure: he's a politician and SimCity Ankh-Morpork is all he does. --Old Dickens 19:08, 1 March 2009 (UTC)

Another nitpick on the taxation issue: as I recall, the passage in Reaper Man was describing what the arrangement was with the Unseen University. Other citizens may have different taxation arrangements. Draxynnic 14:10, 18 August 2009 (UTC)


Where is the size given in the stats mentioned? 1,6km seems a bit small for a city...especially a major city. (To compare, that's about the size of Londinium)--LilMaibe 20:12, 1 October 2011 (CEST)

The nearly circular walled city shown in The Streets of Ankh-Morpork is one mile across. It's been assumed that there's a considerable suburban area outside the walls because a one-mile circle provides twenty-eight square feet (2.6 m2) per person including all commercial and industrial space, Hide Park, The Tump and all. We know it's crowded, but that's silly. The most densely populated cities on Earth barely exceed 100,000 per square mile. I think Fred Colon once referred to the city as eight miles wide, which seems more likely. On the other hand, locations outside the wall are almost never mentioned. --Old Dickens 21:26, 1 October 2011 (CEST)
Also remember that Ankh-Morpork is the largest dwarf city on the disc and some dwarves prefer to live underground which means that the city also has a lot of residential space below it as well as on the surface. --Zdm 22:20, 1 October 2011 (CEST)
Well, if it is from the map I think we can easily ignore that bit of info, as even though the map WAS used to write NW (afetr the map had been created) the scale might be utterly flawed.--LilMaibe 23:06, 1 October 2011 (CEST)

Odd historical sidebar

A visitor to Prague in the early 1600s, a city then on the edges of Europe looking out into a debateable area with rampant Ottomans out there looking to expand their Empire, commented that the smell of the streets was strong enough to stop the Turkish invasion by itself. AgProv (talk) 17:42, 15 February 2018 (UTC)