Talk:Bas-Lag

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Known Races Split[edit]

I think it is a good idea to split the Known Races section into its own article, since their definitely is enough information to create one and it will take way from the appearance of the article just being a giant list Deyyaz 16:46, 14 January 2006 (UTC)

I agree. There is enough information about culture, language, religion, etc. for each race that it could easily have it's own article. Moongoblin 21:46, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

I did the split. The new article needs alphabetisation. Also, I can't for the life of me remember the difference between the cray, wyrmen, grindylows etc. I may have the wrong one in the major races section. - Tredanse 02:20, 19 January 2006 (UTC)

Which coast is New Crobuzon ?[edit]

Reading through the artical for Bas Lag, I noted that there was a problem locating where New Crobuzon was located on the Rohagni continent.

Stated in the geography section, it mentions that New Crobuzon (NC) lays about 10 miles inland from it's eastern coast.

In the Politics and society section, it states NC to have the rivers Tar, Canker and Gross Tar, 10 miles EAST of the swollen ocean, which places it on the west coast.

As all other locations and cities/towns are mentioned to be south west of NC, (see Iron Council), the dominating suggestion is that NC is on the east coast of Rohagni.

--217.37.204.61 11:57, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

Flat?[edit]

I just finished reading The Scar, and don't recall any suggestion that the world is flat. If it were, the utility of crow's nests on ships would be http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Talk:Bas-Lag&action=edit&section=3 largely diminished, as the extra height is useful to extend the view distance around the surface of a sphere (eg, to spot land and ships that would be hidden by the horizon for a lower observer), but not on a flat plane. Would someone care to cite a supporting bit? (There's no worries about posting spoilers in discussion threads, right?) 18:29, 24 April 2007 (UTC) Echonull

I also got no hint of that from the book and "strongly hints" sounds like weasel words to me. It needs sourcing as do other statements (even if from primary sources). It also needs cleaning up (too much bold in geography and languages) and "Science, technology and magic" is rather speculative. (Emperor 18:43, 24 April 2007 (UTC))
I'd just assumed the preponderance of bolding was some kind of wiki style standard. *shrug* Will remove the "flat" mention in a day if nothing shiny turns up. If others dispute they can do no worse than I. 19:03, 24 April 2007 (UTC) Echonull
Seems fair. You can always move it in here so nothing is lost if it turns out to be true (it wouldn't be the first time I've missed something obvious but two of us...). Also bold should be used sparingly and there are only a few places where it should be used: see here. (Emperor 19:21, 24 April 2007 (UTC))
Yoinked out: "Miéville's second New Crobuzon novel, The Scar, strongly hints that Bas-Lag, unlike other worlds in the same universe, is flat. [citation needed]" from the article. I assume this stems from the early description of the Scar itself, but that culminates in a mention of the far edge, too, so it doesn't form the edge of the world.
.... Also, what's this "unlike other worlds in the same universe" dealy? Does Iron Council include interstellar travel all of a sudden? 19:26, 26 April 2007 (UTC) (Echonull)
FWIW, coming to this a few weeks later I was surprised that the article didn't mention the flat thing, because it seemed very obvious to me from the end of The Scar that the Ghosthead had flattened Bas-Lag from a previously spherical shape on their arrival. It also seems to fit more thematically with Mieville's general subversion of fantasy tropes as an inversion of Tolkien's thing where Middle-Earth was flat until it was turned into a sphere (AIUI). I'll try and dig out the book and see if I can find something verifiable to put it back in the article (and/or revise my own opinions!). 86.128.139.22 21:54, 13 May 2007 (UTC) (User:Bth when he's not bothering to sign in)
From Chapter 30: "The Ghosthead came here from the universe’s eastern rim. They passed the rock globes that circulate in the sky-another, more evanescent kind of world than ours on the infinite plateau-and came here, to a land so mild it must have seemed like balm: an endless, gentle midmorning. And its rules were not theirs. Its nature was debatable."
From Chapter 14, dawn happens simultaneously: "The seasons were only points of view-matters of perspective. When it was winter in New Crobuzon, it was summer in Bered Kai Nev (so they said), though they shared the days and nights that grew long and short in antiphase. Dawn was dawn all across the world. In the eastern continent, summer days were short."

Significant characters[edit]

The list of characters is currently a little pointless. Maybe the list could be broken up in several ways? Into lists of characters from each book, or possibly into lists of different factions/groupings, such as "Citizens of Armada", "Iron Council", "New Crobuzoners", etc... or even divided by race? (this last one could be done on the races of Bas-Lag page, under each heading. For example, the Khepri section could say, "notable Khepri include..") Tredanse 03:18, 30 September 2007 (UTC)

Nova Esperium not a penal colony[edit]

There's nothing in the books to suggest that Nova Esperium is a penal colony - they pay people to travel and settle there, as Coldwine states in The Scar. Certainly Remade are sent along with them to aid the settlement, but NE is never described as a penal colony in any text. Thus I removed the word "penal". 75.183.86.60 (talk)

Tesh = Witchocracy[edit]

I had never heard of the idea that Tesh was something separate from The Witchocracy; to me it had always been obvious from reading that The Witchocracy was to Tesh what Parliament was to New Crobuzon. I had to search a bit to find supporting evidence, since these places are always referred to almost always in passing, but I found this from a mayoral speech which makes it fairly clear:

This was not Tesh, nor Troglodopolis, Vadaunk or High Cromlech. This was not a city ruled by witches; this was not a cthonic burrow; the seasons’ changes did not bring an onslaught of superstitious repression; New Crobuzon did not process its citizenry through zombie factories;

Quite obviously Troglodopolis is an underground city (cthonic burrow) and High Cromlech is the undead city which would put its citizens through "zombie factories". The parallel structure makes it rather obvious that Tesh is the "city ruled by witches" - the Witchocracy. It's also simpler than the idea that somehow there were two powers in control of the Firewater Straits.75.183.86.60 (talk)

On the official map Mieville released it shows the Witchocracy, also referred to as Shud Zar Myrion Zar Koni, as opposite Tesh on the other side of the Firewater straits. http://outtherebooks.wordpress.com/2014/05/14/here-it-is-the-official-map-of-bas-lag-as-drawn-by-china-mieville/ — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.72.41.202 (talk) 04:06, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

Sources in the articles[edit]

I'm trying to update this page and provide some citations for the information provided wherein, but I am unsure as to where to place them (bit of a newbie to Wikipedia.) The majority of the information I am using is an issue of Dragon Magazine. I'm currently working on the continents section. Should a citation go at the end of every paragraph, or should I add a sentence at the top saying something along the lines of "Most of this information is derived from blahblahblah?" Any help would be greatly appreciated! AwesomeInTheory (talk) 07:14, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

List of characters[edit]

Moving this to the talk page for now, because I don't think it's needed in the article, but the character lists could be incorporated into the book articles.Tredanse (talk) 09:27, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Update: removed Perdido Street Station characters from below and incorporated into that article.Tredanse (talk) 12:16, 15 June 2008 (UTC)

The Scar

  • Bellis Coldwine
  • Tanner Sack
  • Uther Doul
  • Silas Fennec
  • Shekel
  • The Lovers
  • Hedrigall
  • The Brucolac
  • Johannes Tearfly
  • Krüach Aum

Iron Council

  • Cutter
  • Judah Low
  • Pomeroy
  • Elsie
  • Ori
  • Weather Wrightby
  • Drogon
  • Ann-Hari
  • Uzman
  • Toro
  • Spiral Jacobs
  • Bertold Sulion
  • Jack Half-a-prayer
  • Thick Shanks
  • Old Shoulder
  • Qurabin
  • Mayor Eliza Stem-Fulcher
  • Oil Bill
  • Place How
  • Baron
  • Magistrate Legas


Edits to article[edit]

Just wanted to say that I just have been swamped with work as of late but intend to make some contributions to this page, most likely over the weekend. I know I've sort of dragged on it, but I will get back 'on the wagon' with this soon. AwesomeInTheory (talk) 21:12, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Tesh is the Witchocracy, or is it?[edit]

I'd always thought that Tesh and the Witchocracy were one and the same, and there are many passages in the books that suggest that, but this one contradicts it:

Thousands of sea miles from Iron Bay to the remote coast, to the foothold that New Crobuzon had established north of Tesh. The militia had to go past Shankell, past seas thick with piasa and pirates, through the Firewater Straits where the Witchocracy backed their Tesh neighbours.
(Iron Council, Ch. 11, pg. 126 in the UK paperback edition)

Through the miracle of ebooks I can look up anything in each of the books. The word "Tesh" is mentioned 6 times in PSS, "Witchocracy" none. In The Scar, "Tesh" occurs twice, while "Witchocracy" occurs a handful of times in just one passage:

“The Witchocracy, more ponderously known as Shud zar Myrion zar Koni.” She waved her hands mock-mysteriously. “City of Ratjinn, Hive of the Jet Sorrow—and suchlike. I know what you New Crobuzoners say about it. Very little of which is true.”

Notice Tesh isn't named here.

In Iron Council "Tesh" comes up hundreds of times, while "Witchocracy" only appears thrice: once as quoted previously, where the two are differentiated as "neighbours", but the other two times the Witchocracy and Tesh seem to be analogous.

It's all too confusing and not that important, I just thought since I have the ebooks and I can search text, I would look into this question :) Tredanse (talk) 12:32, 24 September 2008 (UTC)


Wow. Looks like it's pretty contradictory. But maybe Tesh is a vassal of the The Witchocracy? It could explain how they're separate yet functionally similar. And both happen to be ruled by witches?207.181.213.51 (talk) 03:38, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Know Races remerge[edit]

I notice that the Races of Bas-Lag article is still out there on its own a good ten months after (limited) consensus at AfD established that it should be remerged. The earlier consensus to split has presumably then been overturned. Any objections if I have a crack at re-inserting it here? Yunshui (talk) 12:42, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

A draft version of the section to be reinserted is here. Yunshui (talk) 13:18, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

No objections? Here we go, then... Yunshui (talk) 09:26, 13 July 2011 (UTC)

Anophelii brilliance[edit]

FFS. Maybe "superintelligent" was a stretch, but "brilliant" is exactly the word used to describe the male anophelii, and their being kept as captive scholars is the entire point of both the visit by Armada and of the very existence of the colony. I went back and re-read the relevant section to be precise; citation, The Scar, just like everything in the paragraph. This is no more "controversial" than anything else in the entire article. -- Mindstalk (talk) 03:04, 7 September 2011 (UTC)

Another (Barely) Known Race: The Llogris[edit]

I first came to this article looking for info on the llogris, who are more than once mentioned but never described in Iron Council. I failed to find it.

Googling discovers the French-language Wikipedia article, in which they are described as "Une course indécrite. Tout ce qui est connu d'eux est qu'ils ont trois jambes." Machine translated, that's "Undescribed race. All that is known of them is that they have three legs", which may well be accurate but (more surprisingly) is actually grammatical English. However, the reference in Perdido Street Station (as found online in the Polish version at http://fb2.booksgid.com/content/84/china-mieville-dworzec-perdido/114.html as, again, machine translated), ch. 42, is to a homeless llogris who finds the streets unsafe for his 3 legs--which proves only that llogris have at least three legs when whole. (I don't suppose a Remade llogris w/ an added leg is worth contemplating.)

All of which is way too much but w/ too little actual content to put into the article. So I'm dumping it here fWIW. GeorgeTSLC (talk) 19:59, 11 December 2011 (UTC)

As I recall, the llorgis did get a mention in the old Races of Bas-Lag article, before it was merged here (by me, per consensus). It said pretty much exactly the same as the French version. I'm pretty sure Mieville's never gone into detail about them beyond their tripodality, which is why I cut them from the current article: there just isn't enough information, even in the primary text, to warrant inclusion here. Yunshui  21:13, 11 December 2011 (UTC)

Correction to Map[edit]

One small correction I would note to the otherwise excellent map: the term used by Mieville is "Cacotopic Stain", not "Cacatopic Strain". Daen (talk) 22:04, 16 August 2012 (UTC)