alternate englands: when?

Paul Andinach pandinac at
Mon Feb 14 19:41:54 EST 2005

On Mon, 14 Feb 2005 minnow at wrote:

> I wrote:
> > I have a feeling that Chrestomanci's world is 12A, but whether
> > that's the-author-told-me information or whether it's in one of
> > the texts I cannot recall.
> and have now run it to earth:
> It's in the Author's Preface to the HarperCollins edition of
> *Conrad's Fate*, (the action of which takes place in Series Seven).
> That preface also says that "there are in fact thousands of
> different worlds", which puts the kybosh on the Chrestomanci set-up
> being limited in size, because twelve serieses times nine isn't
> thousands.  The ones called "Related Series" (the twelve times nine
> worlds) are so-called because the same languages are spoken in all
> of them, apparently.

This is all in 'The Lives of Christopher Chant' as well (except for
the bit about 'Conrad's Fate' being in Series Seven, of course).

> So a *real* split, one that took a world out of the related series
> altogether, would have to be 'way before the European occupation of
> America, when a world never developed English as a result of
> whatever might cause that in the way of invasions-or-not, or had no
> Romans to cause Latin and influence the European languages, or had a
> different language in China for some reason, or something as far
> back as that historically.

I don't know if it's that simple, because many of the worlds in the
Related Series *do* have changes as far back as that, and further -
most of the worlds outside Series Twelve don't even have landmasses
we'd recognise as England, or America, or China, let alone countries
with those names - and still somehow ended up with familiar languages.
(The linguistic version of the force-that-guarantees-analogues,

I'm not sure how it might work in reverse, but we shouldn't rule it

"Hold fast to the one noble thing."

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