User:Miwasatoshi/Differences between fact and fiction in Red River (manga)

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While Chie Shinohara's Red River is a very well-researched work, one must remember that this work is historical fiction, and not an exact chronicle of the events of 3340 years ago (magic notwithstanding).



  • King Suppiluliuma I -- real; very few changes made; the plague that claims him is said in the histories to have been passed from Egyptian soldiers captured as a result of the Zannanza Affair
  • Tawananna Nakia -- fictional name, but based almost directly on Tawananna Malnigal of Babylon; just like Malnigal, she is the third wife of King Suppiluliuma, and attempts to keep her position as Tawananna into the reign of Mursili II but is deposed in favor of his wife
  • Prince Zannanza -- real; the reasons behind his death are evidently not as clear-cut in real-life as in the manga; Zannanza is actual only a conjectured name based on documents from the period (though very strongly supported)
  • Prince Sari Arnuwanda (King Arnuwanda II) -- real; in the manga, he is assassinated by Urhi Shalma, whereas in real life, he died of the same plague that claimed his father.
  • Prince Kail Mursili (King Mursili II) -- real; in the manga, it is claimed that he is the son of the second wife of King Suppiluliuma (real-life Tawananna Henti), but it is implied in the histories that he is Malnigal's son; in the manga he is staunchly monogamous, but has two wives RL, Tawananna Gaschschulawija and Tawananna Danuhepa I.
  • Prince Telipinu -- real?; this is a fairly standard name for this dynastic line (also Telipinus), either way the role is suitably minor
  • Prince Juda Haspasrupi -- fictional; can not verify his name, and Juda is not standard for either Hittite or Kizzuwadna; there's plenty of room for error here, though, as King Suppiluliuma is documented to have had at least thirteen sons
  • Princess Guzel -- fictional; Guzel is a modern Turkish name, but the Turks would not occupy Anatolia until the 11th century AD; it's safe to bet that any non-Tawananna female character will be fictional, as non-noble women were generally not recorded in the annals
  • Hadi -- fictional; Hadi is actually modern Arabic and Turkish *boy's* name.
  • Ilbani -- probably fictional; Ilban is a modern Turkish name.
  • Kash -- probably fictional; however, this is a reasonably common name; oddly enough, means "beer" in Sumerian!
  • Kikkuri -- real; as Kikkuli, he is credited as being the horsekeeper for King Suppiluliuma, and a training manual of the time is credited to his name
  • Mettannamuwa -- fictional; the name sounds Hittite enough, but it's essentially a placeholder
  • Rusafa -- fictional; there are place names similar to this in modern Iraq and Syria; often mistaken in translation for "Lucifer" but that is Latin and therefore even *more* incorrect.
  • Ryui -- fictional; I'm not quite sure where Shinohara got this name!
  • Shala -- fictional; al-Shara is an Arabic surname, but see Ryui
  • Talos -- fictional; Talos was originally the name of the man of bronze who was the protector of Crete;
  • Urhi Shalma -- probably fictional; however, Urhi is a valid Hittite name (cf. Urhi-Teshub -- King Mursili III). Sharma is Sanskrit -- however there is some evidence that Mesopotamia was exposed to Vedic texts (see Mattiwaza for more details).


  • King Tushratta -- real; his murder after a disastrous Hittite invasion is real, but the perpetrator is not: his real-life murder was one of his sons, quite likely Mattiwaza himself; also, the kingdom does not dissolve, but is placed by Suppiluliuma as a Hittite vassal state under the rule of Tushratta's younger brother (and Suppiluliuma's son-in-law!) Shattiwaza
  • Prince Mattiwaza -- real; a treaty between him and King Suppiluliuma invokes Mithra, Varuna, Indra, and the Nasatya gods of the Vedic pantheon; an alternate transliteration of his name could be Mattiraja, which makes the Hindu connection far clearer
  • Princess Tadukhipa -- real; was sent to marry Pharaoh Amenhotep III, then subsequently Pharaoh Akhenaten; the connection between her and Nefertiti, however is conjecture, though often proposed; they may or may not have been the same person


  • Princess Alexandra -- probably fictional; Alexandra is a Greek name -- the Arzawans most likely spoke Luwian, not Greek; however, one of the Arzawan successor states, Wilusa, has an attested ruler named Alaksandu (Alexander), about 1280BC


  • NOTE: Babylon was sacked in 1595 BC; for the next 576 years, it was ruled by Kassites and known as Kar-Duniash.


  • Queen Dowager Nefertiti -- real, of course; see Tadukhipa for more details
  • Ankhesenamun -- real; the Zannanza affair is very likely her doing, but her intentions may not have been totally altruistic in real life; see also Ramses
  • Pharaoh Ay -- real; the dirty, old, lecherous ex-vizier who ultimately marries Ankhesenamun was very much real, and so hated, that his successors Horemheb and Ramses tried to expunge him from the records completely
  • Horemheb (Pharaoh Horemhebn) -- real; his role in both history and fiction are virtually identical, except that he took Ay's position by force, rather than being a relative
  • Ramses (Pharaoh Ramses I) -- real; prior to his ascent to pharaoh, he was actually known as Paramesse. He was actually a former High Priest of Amun and yet paradoxically some histories claim he is the son of Seti and ... Ankhesenpaaten Tasherit (the daughter of Ankhesenamun) which would make him Ankhesenamun's grandson!