No royalist me, I nevertheless post this discussion of fictional royalty as a counterblast to yesterday’s anachronistic and pompous pageant. Yes, I was personally present on the Mall near Buckingham Palace in 1953, a confused toddler among the cheering crowds as the golden coach past to and fro, but seven-tenths of a century have now passed and the world has changed: did we really need this nonsense, this Clobberation?
It’s been a while since I last posted about the final instalment in Joan Aiken‘s long-running series which began with the modern classic The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (1962). In 2022 it celebrated its 60th anniversary; 2024 will mark the centenary of the author’s birth, on the 4th September 1924.
It’s high time, then – following on from a review here – that I got on with discussion posts on The Witch of Clatteringshaws (2005), including this, the second instalment of my introduction to the characters who appear in this slim volume (just 150 pages in the Red Fox paperback).
What follows is a list designed perhaps for completists, but also for those who delight in the quirky names borne by equally quirky characters. It also helps to know that this all takes place during the timeline of an alternative history, at a date which the author’s daughter Lizza estimates to be 1840 but which I calculate could be as late as 1845 or 1846. The action primarily takes place in Scotland (here called Caledonia) and in London (which, because never referred to as being in England, we may imagine as being the capital of Albion).Continue reading “Clashes in Clatteringshaws”