Harry Turtledove frequently makes references to historical figures in his works, particularly his alternate history tales. The people referenced have usually been dead for some time before the work's setting, and, in the case of alternate histories, for quite some time before the Point of Divergence. These references are usually fleeting. Some are metaphorical, akin to a literary reference, comparing a well known event in history to some incident in the plot of the work. Others are comparisons of appearance or some famous quote attributed a given figure. In those cases, the reference is not substantial enough to justify giving that person an article or a story-specific subsection of a pre-existing article.
References to historical figures that give some insight into how a timeline works and references to contemporary political figures are usually sufficient to justify articles, and should not necessarily be included here.
- 1 Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha
- 2 Buzz Aldrin
- 3 Alexander I of Russia
- 4 Alexander the Great
- 5 Bryan Allen
- 6 Amr ibn al-As
- 7 Roald Amundsen
- 8 Anna the Isaurian
- 9 Antiochus IV Epiphanes
- 10 Arcadius
- 11 Archimedes
- 12 Ariovistus
- 13 Arminius
- 14 Benedict Arnold
- 15 Attila the Hun
- 16 Augustus
- 17 E.B. Babbitt
- 18 P.T. Barnum
- 19 Thomas Beckett
- 20 Robert Bellarmine
- 21 Billy the Kid
- 22 Bohemund I of Antioch
- 23 Pope Boniface IV
- 24 Daniel Boone
- 25 John Wilkes Booth
- 26 James Bowie
- 27 Braxton Bragg
- 28 Leonid Brezhnev
- 29 Semyon Budyonny
- 30 Abraham Buford II
- 31 George W. Bush
- 32 Jack Cade
- 33 Julius Caesar
- 34 Caligula
- 35 John Calvin
- 36 Canute II of Denmark
- 37 Al Capone
- 38 Carausius
- 39 Barbara Cartland
- 40 Marcus Cornelius Cethegus
- 41 Claudius
- 42 Christopher Columbus
- 43 Confucius
- 44 Calvin Coolidge
- 45 Edwin Coppock
- 46 Juan Cortina
- 47 Charles Coughlin
- 48 Thomas Cranmer
- 49 Marcus Licinius Crassus
- 50 Davy Crockett
- 51 Oliver Cromwell
- 52 Aleister Crowley
- 53 George Washington Parke Custis
- 54 Custis Morgan
- 55 John W. Davis
- 56 Decius (Roman Emperor)
- 57 Martin Delany
- 58 Benjamin Disraeli
- 59 Stephen Douglas
- 60 Alfred Dreyfus
- 61 Edward VII of Britain
- 62 Benjamin Edwards
- 63 Albert Einstein
- 64 Elizabeth I of England
- 65 Friedrich Engels
- 66 George English
- 67 Epicurus
- 68 Gaius Erucius Clarus
- 69 Ethelburga of Lyming
- 70 Quintus Fabius Maximus
- 71 David Farragut
- 72 Guy Fawkes
- 73 Henry Ford
- 74 Lonnie David Franklin Jr.
- 75 Franz Ferdinand of Austria
- 76 Franz Joseph I of Austria
- 77 Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor
- 78 Frederick II of Prussia
- 79 Frederick IV of Denmark
- 80 John C. Frémont
- 81 Sigmund Freud
- 82 Uziel Gal
- 83 Galileo Galilei
- 84 George V of Britain
- 85 Geronimo
- 86 Mikhail Gorbachev
- 87 Hermann Göring
- 88 Anna Gordon
- 89 Ulysses S. Grant
- 90 Pope Gregory XIII
- 91 Grim Sleeper
- 92 Leslie Groves
- 93 Robert Guiscard
- 94 Gustavus Adolphus
- 95 Douglas Haig
- 96 Hammurabi
- 97 Warren G. Harding
- 98 Harold Godwinson
- 99 Nathan Hale
- 100 William Henry Harrison
- 101 Harun al-Rashid
- 102 Fred Harvey
- 103 John Porter Hatch
- 104 Stephen Hawking
- 105 Isaac Hawkins
- 106 Henry II of England
- 107 Henry IV of France
- 108 Patrick Henry
- 109 Hero of Alexandria
- 110 Adolf Hitler
- 111 Alois Hitler, Jr.
- 112 Ho Tei
- 113 Herbert Hoover
- 114 Oliver Otis Howard
- 115 Hulagu Khan
- 116 Robert Hunter
- 117 Stephen A. Hurlbut
- 118 Fielding Hurst
- 119 Andrew Jackson
- 120 Thomas Jackson
- 121 James II of England
- 122 Thomas Jefferson
- 123 Thomas Jenkins
- 124 Andrew Johnson
- 125 John Paul Jones
- 126 Justin I
- 127 Justinian I
- 128 Justinian II
- 129 Christine Keeler
- 130 Kublai Khan
- 131 Jean Lafitte
- 132 Robert E. Lee
- 133 Sydney Lee
- 134 Vladimir Lenin
- 135 Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck
- 136 Marcus Annius Libo
- 137 Abraham Lincoln
- 138 Charles Lindbergh
- 139 Huey Long
- 140 Louis XIV of France
- 141 Marinus van der Lubbe
- 142 Martin Luther
- 143 Douglas MacArthur
- 144 James Madison
- 145 Ferdinand Magellan
- 146 Manfred of Sicily
- 147 Marcus Aurelius
- 148 Marie Antoinette
- 149 Mary II of England
- 150 Megacles
- 151 Minamoto no Tomonaga
- 152 Minamoto no Noriyori
- 153 Helmuth von Moltke
- 154 James Monroe
- 155 John Mosby
- 156 Muhammad
- 157 Benito Mussolini
- 158 Napoleon I of France
- 159 Horatio Nelson
- 160 Nero
- 161 Francesco Niccolini
- 162 Quintus Ninnius Hasta
- 163 Robert Nivelle
- 164 Richard Nixon
- 165 Alfred Nobel
- 166 Beatrice Patton
- 167 Friedrich Paulus
- 168 Matthew Perry
- 169 Oliver Hazard Perry
- 170 Clara Petacci
- 171 Peter I of Russia
- 172 James Johnston Pettigrew
- 173 Pauline Pfeiffer
- 174 Phokas
- 175 George Pickett
- 176 Gideon Pillow
- 177 Jozef Pilsudski
- 178 Henri Pirenne
- 179 Sallie Pleasants
- 180 James K. Polk
- 181 Leonidas Polk
- 182 Marco Polo
- 183 Pontiac
- 184 Gavrilo Princip
- 185 Ptolemy III of Egypt
- 186 Casimir Pulaski
- 187 Pyrrhus of Epirus
- 188 Richard I of England
- 189 Richard III of England
- 190 John of Brittany, Earl of Richmond
- 191 Manfred von Richthofen
- 192 Halsted Ritter
- 193 Ernst Röhm
- 194 Theodore Roosevelt
- 195 Konstantin Rokossovsky
- 196 Donald Rumsfeld
- 197 Dean Rusk
- 198 Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna
- 199 José Antonio Saucedo
- 200 Eugene Schieffelin
- 201 Anna von Schlieffen
- 202 Friedrich Werner von der Schulenberg
- 203 Albert Schweitzer
- 204 Robert Falcon Scott
- 205 Septimus Severus
- 206 Francesco I Sforza
- 207 William Sherman
- 208 Henry Hopkins Sibley
- 209 Franz Sigel
- 210 Wallis Simpson
- 211 Otto Skorzeny
- 212 Al Smith
- 213 Howard K. Smith
- 214 James Smith
- 215 Spartacus
- 216 Joseph Stalin
- 217 Achille Starace
- 218 Stilicho
- 219 George Stoneman
- 220 Willie Sutton
- 221 William Howard Taft
- 222 Thiudahad
- 223 Titus
- 224 William Travis
- 225 Leon Trotsky
- 226 Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
- 227 Andrei Tupolev
- 228 Henri de Turenne
- 229 William Tweed
- 230 Wat Tyler
- 231 Pope Urban II
- 232 Marcus Valerius Corvus
- 233 Earl Van Dorn
- 234 Gaius Terentius Varro
- 235 Sextus Quinctilius Varus
- 236 Victoria of Britain
- 237 Vlad the Impaler
- 238 Kliment Voroshilov
- 239 Gouverneur Warren
- 240 George Washington
- 241 Stand Watie
- 242 Alfred Wegener
- 243 Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
- 244 Saint Wenceslas
- 245 Eugene Wigner
- 246 William Wilberforce
- 247 Wilhelm II, German Emperor
- 248 Frances Willard
- 249 William I of England
- 250 William II of England
- 251 William III of England
- 252 Woodrow Wilson
- 253 Xenophon
- 254 Yesugei
- 255 Yochanan bar Nafcha
- 256 References
Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha
In The Two Georges, the American province of Albertus appears to be named for Prince Albert (as opposed to the OTL analog Alberta, named for his daughter), and the British Royal Family continues to use the name Saxe-Coburg-Gotha in the late 20th century.
Edwin Eugene "Buzz" Aldrin Jr. (born January 20, 1930) is an American engineer, former astronaut, and Command Pilot in the United States Air Force, best known as the second man on the Moon. As Lunar Module Pilot on the Apollo 11 mission, Aldrin set foot on the Moon at 03:15:16 on July 21, 1969 (UTC), nine minutes after mission commander Neil Armstrong first touched the surface. One of his first missions was on Gemini 12 (1966) where he successfully proved that extravehicular activity (EVA) could be performed by astronauts, spending over five hours outside the craft, thus achieving the goals of the Gemini program and paving the way for the Apollo program.
Alexander I of Russia
Alexander I of Russia (Russian: Александр I Павлович, Aleksandr I Pavlovich) (23 December 1777 – 1 December 1825), also known as Alexander the Blessed, served as Emperor of Russia from 23 March 1801 to 1 December 1825 and as the first Russian King of Poland from 1815 to 1825. He was also the first Russian Grand Duke of Finland and Lithuania. His rule coincided with the chaotic period of the Napoleonic Wars, during which, in 1812, a French army led by Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte occupied much of Russia before being driven out at great cost to both sides.
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, after the Hess Agreement in 1940 turns the Soviet Union's former allies into enemies, Joseph Stalin gives a radio speech that hearkens back to Alexander's victory over Napoleon to help inspire the Soviet people to keep fighting until victory.
In The Two Georges, guards outside the Russian embassy in the North American Union wear ceremonial uniforms based on the Life-Guard Dragoons of Alexander I, but with bayoneted Nagants rather than sabers.
Alexander the Great
All of Alexander the Great's references in Turtledove's work are posthumous, but some are more important than others. In a trivial moment of lightheartedness, he is the subject of Squirt Frog and the Evolving Tadpoles' song "Came Along Too Late" in the Supervolcano series. In the Agent of Byzantium story "Pillar of Cloud, Pillar of Fire," Basil Argyros walks past Alexander the Great's Tomb.
Bryan Lewis Allen (born October 13, 1952) is an American self-taught hang glider pilot and bicyclist. He achieved fame when he piloted (and provided the human power for) the two aircraft that won the first two Kremer prizes for human-powered flight, the Gossamer Condor (1977; the first human-powered aircraft to fly and meet specified criteria) and Gossamer Albatross (1979; the first human-powered aircraft to cross the English Channel). He later set world distance and duration records in a small pedal-powered blimp named White Dwarf.
In A World of Difference, Sarah Levitt compares herself to Allen's 1979 flight across the English Channel in the Gossamer Albatross as she prepares to take the Damselfly to rescue two Russians in distress in the Minervan wilderness, realizing that her journey is more dangerous.
Amr ibn al-As
Amr ibn al-As (Arabic: عمرو بن العاص; c. 585 – 6 January 664) was an Arab military commander who led the Muslim conquest of Egypt in 640. He was a contemporary of Muhammad and one of the Sahaba ("Companions") who rose quickly through the Muslim hierarchy following his conversion to Islam in AH 8/AD 629. He founded the Egyptian capital of Fustat and built the Mosque of Amr ibn al-As at its center.
Roald Engelbregt Gravning Amundsen (16 July 1872 – c. 18 June 1928) was a Norwegian explorer of polar regions. He led the Antarctican expedition of 1910–12 which was the first to reach the South Pole, on 14 December 1911. In 1926, he was the first expedition leader for the air expedition to the North Pole.
Amundsen is recognized as the first person, without dispute, as having reached both poles. He is also known as having the first expedition to traverse the Northwest Passage (1903–6) in the Arctic.
In The War That Came Early: West and East, an unnamed English captain trudging through a blizzard in Norway concludes that the last person who was in anything like that predicament was Robert Falcon Scott. He then amends this, remembering that Roald Amundsen was exploring Antarctica at the same time as Scott, and surmises that Amundsen, being Norwegian, survived because he was used to such weather.
Anna the Isaurian
Anna (b. 700s, d. after 743) was the daughter of Byzantine Emperor Leo III the Isaurian and the wife of Artabasdos, one of two rival Emperors in a civil war which lasted from June 741 to November 743. The other Emperor was her brother, Constantine V. She was the mother of Artabasdos' proclaimed heir Nikephoros, and had numerous other children whose names are unknown. Her relation to Artabasdos' son Niketas is a matter of dispute, with some historians believing her to be his mother, and others believing that Niketas the son of Artabasdos by a previous wife. Anna became her husband's caretaker after he was defeated and blinded. One story claims that nearly 30 years after Artabasdos' defeat, Constantine forced his sister to go to Artabasdos' grave and dishonor the bones.
In "Islands in the Sea," Turtledove, possibly working from inaccurate sources, declares Anna to be the mother of Niketas, whose biography is completely different than in OTL. In 769, Brother Paul informs Jalal ad-Din of Father Niketas' ancestry, and Jalal replies that Niketas might now be Emperor had Constantinople not fallen in 718.
Antiochus IV Epiphanes
Antiochus IV Epiphanes (Ἀντίοχος Δ΄ ὁ Ἐπιφανής, c. 215 BC – 164 BC) was a Hellenistic Greek king of the Seleucid Empire from 175 BC until his death in 164 BC. He was a son of King Antiochus III the Great. His original name was Mithradates; he assumed the name Antiochus after he ascended the throne.
Notable events during the reign of Antiochus IV include his near-conquest of Egypt, his persecution of the Jews of Judea and Samaria, and the rebellion of the Jewish Maccabees. In Jewish culture, he is remembered for his harsh persecution of Judaism, which led to a successful Jewish nationalist uprising, commemorated by the candle-lighting ceremony of Chanukah in December.
Antiochus is discussed at length in the short non-fiction work "Perspectives on Chanukah."
Flavius Arcadius (Greek: Ἀρκάδιος, Árkádios; 1 January 377 – 1 May 408) was the emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire from 383 to 408. He was the eldest son of Theodosius I and his first wife Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of Honorius. Upon Theodosius' death, the split between the Eastern and Western Empire was made permanent, with Arcadius ruling the Eastern Empire and Honorius becoming emperor of the Western Empire. In that sense, Arcadius was the "first" Byzantine Emperor.
Archimedes (Greek: Ἀρχιμήδης; c. 287 BC – c. 212 BC) was an Ancient Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, and astronomer from Syracuse, Sicily. Although few details of his life are known, he is regarded as one of the leading scientists in classical antiquity. Archimedes died during the Siege of Syracuse when he was killed by a Roman soldier despite orders that he should not be harmed. Apocryphally, he ignored the Roman's order to surrender due to being engrossed with a geometric proof.
In "The R-Strain," when Rabbi Aaron Kaplan comes to a conclusion regarding the cud-chewing pig, he feels like Archimedes in his bath, and reflects that a naked man running down the street shouting "Eureka!" would attract no more attention in modern Los Angeles than in old Syracuse, unless the police decided he was high on angel dust and shot him.
In The Valley-Westside War, Liz Mendoza finds her father's analysis of the Valley-Westside War of 2097 to be as scientific and invariable as a geometry proof. She reflects that no geometry proof had ever gotten anyone killed, but then she remembers how Archimedes died.
Ariovistus was a soldier of fortune of the Suebi tribe of what is now Germany. In or around 60 BC, he was hired by the Arverni and Sequani tribes of Gaul to assist in their war against the Aedui. Ariovistus' company of 15,000 warriors proved decisive at the Battle of Magetobringa, after which the Aedui submitted to the Sequani. However, Ariovistus then turned on his erstwhile employers, driving the Sequani out of the strategically valuable Doubs Valley and repopulating that valley with Suebi loyal to him. Several years later, he was driven out of Gaul by Julius Caesar after a falling-out with the Roman government.
In The Legion of Videssos, when Targitaus explains to Viridovix why the khagans of Khamorth clans were extremely reluctant to support one another as junior partners in military alliances (for fear that they would enable their allies to form a Royal Clan), Viridovix is reminded of the Sequani's use of Suebi mercenaries in their war against the Aedui. This decision had indeed allowed the Sequani to triumph over the once-stronger Aedui, but had the unintended consequence of allowing Ariovistus the German to become the most powerful man in Gaul. 
In addition to his more significant roles in Turtledove's work, Arminius' role in history is referred to in other works. For example, in Colonization, Monique Dutourd's Roman History course included a section on Arminius and the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest. Monique pointedly refers to the Germanic chief by his Roman name, rather than his German name, Hermann.
Benedict Arnold V (January 14, 1741 - June 14, 1801) was a general during the American Revolutionary War. He began the war in the Continental Army, in whose ranks he had a major role in such actions as the pivotal Battle of Saratoga in 1777. Later, his career was derailed by charges of corruption, and he entered into a plot to betray West Point to the British. Upon the plot being uncovered, he escaped to the British and fought on their side in the later parts of the war, going to exile in Britain upon the US gaining independence. Because of the way he changed sides, his name quickly became a byword in the United States for treason or betrayal.
Arnold's status as traitor is referenced throughout a number of Turtledove works. One rather unique example comes in "The Last Word", Turtledove's contribution to S.M. Stirling's Draka series. We learn that many of the Draka, descended from Tory refugees who had taken the British side in the Revolutionary War, admire Benedict Arnold as a hero and Draka families named "Arnold" habitually call their male children "Benedict". One such character appears in the short work.
Attila the Hun
Attila (c. 406 – March 453), frequently referred to as Attila the Hun, was the ruler of the Huns from 434 until his death. Attila was a leader of the Hunnic Empire, a tribal confederation consisting of Huns, Ostrogoths, and Alans among others, on the territory of Central and Eastern Europe.
During his reign, he was one of the most feared enemies of the Western and Eastern Roman Empires. However, little about the man behind the power is known; Attila's religion and his basic appearance, for example, remain matters of conjecture.
Turtledove has referenced Attila's fearsome reputation in numerous works. For example, in The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, Peggy Druce declares that Attila the Hun was a "bargain" when compared to Adolf Hitler.
In the State of Jefferson Stories installment "Typecasting", Bill Williamson believes that the Republicans of Jefferson lean slightly to the right of Attila the Hun in their political zeal. In The Disunited States of America, Beckie Royer has the same thought about Myrtle Bentley. and in Alpha and Omega, Gabriela Sandoval thinks that of Fox News commentator Forrest Charleston.
In addition to his speculative roles in Turtledove's work, the Roman Emperor Augustus Caesar is the subject of a number of more minor references as well. In Days of Infamy, Jim Peterson, while frantically looking for another plane during the Japanese invasion of Hawaii, remembers Augustus' anguished cry “Quintilius Varus, give me back my legions!”, and mentally paraphrases: “General Short, give me back my airplanes!” In The War Between the Provinces: Advance and Retreat, Lord Geoffrey says "General Bell, give me back my army!"
In Colonization: Second Contact, Monique Dutourd gives a lecture where she explained her thesis as to why Augustus failed to bring Germania into the Empire, whereas his uncle Julius Caesar had successfully conquered Gaul.
In In the Presence of Mine Enemies, after learning that she and her family are secretly Jews, Alicia Gimpel begins to doubt everything that she had ever been taught, and wonders, among other things, whether Augustus had truly been the first Roman Emperor.
In Through Darkest Europe, Khalid al-Zarzisi tells Dawud ibn Musa, as they enter the modern Roman seat of government, that Augustus would have admired Grand Duke Cosimo III for his strength, but thought Cosimo foolish for putting it all on open display.
Edwin Burr Babbitt (1803-1881) was a military engineer of the United States Army in the mid 19th century. In 1849, while serving as Acting Quartermaster for the Department of Texas, he oversaw a major renovation to the storied Alamo, making the fortress serviceable as a quartermaster depot for the US Army.
Babbitt's career continued on past the conclusion of the American Civil War. He retired from the Army a brigadier general.
Phineas Taylor "P.T." Barnum (July 4, 1810 – April 7, 1891) was an American showman and businessman remembered for promoting celebrated hoaxes and for founding the Barnum & Bailey Circus. Barnum was also an author, publisher, philanthropist, and for some time a politician in his home state of Connecticut. Nevertheless, he said of himself, "I am a showman by profession...and all the gilding shall make nothing else of me", and his personal aim was "to put money in his own coffers". Barnum is widely credited, perhaps apocryphally, with coining the phrase "There's a sucker born every minute."
Barnum's alleged catch-phrase is referenced in a number of Turtledove works, although it's probably discussed in most detail in The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, when Peggy Druce notes the similarity of H.L. Mencken's supposed motto "No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people" to Barnum's alleged catchphrase, and that both were uttered by men who went by initials rather than full first names.
Saint Thomas à Becket (29 December 1118 - 29 December 1170) was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1162 to 1170 during the reign of King Henry II of England. Though he had been a political ally of Henry before becoming Archbishop, he is best remembered for opposing, in his capacity as the Catholic Church's primate in England, the king's attempts to curb the rights and privileges of the Church in England and bring the nation's religious institution under state control. Henry and Thomas developed a very antagonistic relationship: Henry brought serious criminal charges against Beckett, which forced the archbishop to go into exile in continental Europe for six years. While in exile, the archbishop lobbied the Pope to excommunicate Henry and interdict his considerable territories.
In 1170, the Pope appeared to be on the verge of granting Beckett's requests, and Henry capitulated to avoid excommunication. Beckett was allowed to return to England and resume his duties as primate of that kingdom. However, he soon angered the king once again when he began purging the English clergy of his political and ecclesiastical opponents, including three bishops who had participated in the coronation of Henry the "Young King," the heir to the throne. On hearing of this, Henry II complained about Beckett to his feudal retainers, making it clear that he wanted Beckett dead without giving explicit instructions to that effect. Most often, he is quoted as having said "Will no one rid me of this troublesome priest?" In fact, Henry's words were most likely closer to "What miserable drones and traitors have I nurtured and promoted in my household who let their lord be treated with such shameful contempt by a low-born cleric!"
At any rate, Henry's followers interpreted his words as instructions to assassinate the archbishop. They did so on 29 December 1170. Beckett was recognized as a martyr and was canonized by Pope Alexander III very soon after his death.
Henry's lament and Beckett's murder are frequently mentioned in Turtledove's work. For example, in Ruled Britannia, Richard Burbage and William Shakespeare discuss the metaphor as applying to the Geoffrey Martin affair. It is also invoked in The Great War: Breakthroughs by Abner Dowling in an attempt to talk sense into General Custer. The obscure pearl of wisdom was completely lost on Custer, if not on most of the readers as well.
Robert Bellarmine (Italian: Roberto Francesco Romolo Bellarmino) (4 October 1542 – 17 September 1621) was an Italian Jesuit and a Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He was one of the most important cardinals of the Catholic Reformation. He was canonized in 1930 and is a saint and a Doctor of the Church.
In 1616, Cardinal Bellarmine summoned Galileo Galilei and notified him of a forthcoming decree of the Congregation of the Index condemning the Copernican doctrine of the mobility of the Earth and the immobility of the Sun, and ordered Galileo to abandon the theory. Galileo agreed to do so at the time, but returned to the matter in 1632.
In the story "But It Does Move", when Galileo is being analyzed in 1633 by Cardinal Sigismondo Gioioso, Galileo reminds the Cardinal that the late Robert Bellarmine had warned Galileo that the Copernican view was incompatible with Church doctrine over a decade before, a verdict Galileo claimed he'd accepted. Gioioso does not believe Galileo.
Billy the Kid
Billy the Kid (born Henry McCarty September 17 or November 23, 1859 – July 14, 1881, also known as William H. Bonney) was an American Old West outlaw and gunfighter who killed eight men before he was shot and killed at age 21. He took part in New Mexico's Lincoln County War, during which he allegedly took part in three murders. Afterwards, he simply settled on a life of crime, and was shot to death by Sheriff Pat Garrett under ambiguous circumstances. His reputation has grown to legendary proportions since his death, with his pop cultural image being largely based on apocryphal tales.
In The House of Daniel, Jack Spivey reflects on Billy the Kid's ties to Las Vegas, New Mexico. He also thinks of the colorful names of several other minor outlaws, and concludes that the only people who have such names anymore are baseball players.
Bohemund I of Antioch
Bohemund I (also spelled Bohemond or Boamund) (c. 1058 – 3 March 1111), Prince of Taranto and Prince of Antioch, was a soldier and nobleman of Norman descent. He was the son of Robert Guiscard, and served under his father during his attack on the Byzantine Empire under Alexios I Komnenos. After his father's death in 1085, Bohemund lost most of his Adriatic Coast possessions to the Byzantines, and consequently made war on his half-brother, Roger Borsa, finally securing Taranto in 1087. In 1096, he became part of the First Crusade. While the Crusade had no single official leader, Bohemund was arguably the most important member of the committee of nobles who oversaw it. During the Crusade, Bohemund managed to take control of Antioch. This however, ultimately brought him back into conflict with Alexios I, to whom Bohemund had actually pledged to give Antioch. In 1108, Bohemund was crushed by Alexios and forced to become a vassal of the Byzantine Empire.
Pope Boniface IV
Boniface IV was Pope from 25 September 608 to his death on 8 May 615. He is venerated as a saint in the Catholic Church with a universal feast falling annually on 8 May. As Pope, he encouraged monks and monasticism. With permission of the Byzantine Emperor Phokas, he converted the Pantheon of Rome into the Church of St. Mary and the Martyrs. In 610, he conferred with Mellitus (d. 624), first bishop of London, regarding the needs of the English Church.
Daniel Boone (November 2, 1734 [O.S. October 22] – September 26, 1820) was a prominent American pioneer, explorer, trapper, and soldier. In 1775, Boone blazed the Wilderness Road through Maryland, North Carolina and Tennessee, to Kentucky (then part of Virginia), where he founded the village of Boonesborough. As a militia officer during the American Revolution, Boone fought notable battles against the Shawnee, a British-backed Indian tribe. Boone served three terms in the Virginia General Assembly, and later worked as a surveyor and merchant. After his business ventures failed, he left Kentucky for Missouri in 1799 and lived out his life there.
There are many apocryphal folk stories about Boone which have obscured the details of his real life in the public imagination. Many of them are simply anecdotes of Davy Crockett repackaged for commercial reasons.
In The Disunited States of America, the nation-state of Boone appears to be named for Daniel Boone. In the same novel, Justin Monroe mentally compares himself to Daniel Boone when searching for a corpse.
John Wilkes Booth
In The Disunited States of America, Justin Monroe is trapped in an alternate where the American Civil War, and consequently the Lincoln Assassination, never happened. Justin is surprised to see that Booth's catchphrase Sic semper tyrannis is the national motto of Virginia. He guesses (correctly) that it was the original state motto of Virginia in the home timeline, and that Booth chose it for that very reason.
James Bowie (March 10, 1796 - March 6, 1836) was an American farmer, slave trader, and land speculator in the early 19th century. He saw military service in the Louisiana Militia during the War of 1812. However, he is known as the namesake of the Bowie Knife (a name given to any very large hunting or butcher knife used as a personal weapon), and for his role in the Texas Revolution and was second-in-command at the siege of the Alamo in February-March 1836 after Colonel William Travis. Like all the Alamo's defenders, he was killed on March 6, 1836.
In "Lee at the Alamo", as Robert E. Lee prepares to stand his own siege in the Alamo in February 1861, he thinks of the stand made by Davy Crockett, William Travis, James Bowie and others who died almost exactly 25 years earlier.
In Laura Frankos' "Slue-Foot Sue and the Witch in the Woods", Bowie left his original knife with a female acquaintance of his, to be given to the woman's then-infant son Pecos Bill when he came of age. This gift then saves the life of Bill's wife Slue-foot Sue from Baba Yaga.
In addition to his small posthumous role in Southern Victory, Braxton Bragg is referenced a number of times throughout Turtledove's work. For example, his historical role and negative relationship with Nathan Bedford Forrest are referenced throughout the novel Fort Pillow. In The War Between the Provinces, Bragg is represented by the mage and POV character Thraxton the Braggart.
Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev (Russian, Леонид Ильич Брежнев) (19 December 1906 – 10 November 1982) was General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (and thus political leader of the USSR) from 1964 to 1982, serving in that position longer than anyone other than Joseph Stalin.
In A World of Difference, Brezhnev was probably in office at the relevant POD, but is seven years dead and thoroughly discredited at the beginning of the story proper. KGB agent and Tsiolkovsky crewman Oleg Lopatin has distinctive eyebrows resembling Brezhnev's.
Semyon Mikhailovich Budyonny/Семён Миха́йлович Будённый, also Latinized as Budenny (25 April 1883 – 26 October 1973) was a Russian cavalryman, a military commander during the Russian Civil War and World War II, and a close political ally of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin.
During the Russian Civil War, Budyonny's large cavalry force helped the Bolsheviks to victory and Budyonny himself became the subject of several popular patriotic songs. He was promoted to the rank of Marshal of the Soviet Union in 1935. He was an opponent against the pre-war development of Soviet mechanized forces. In World War II, he received the blame for many of Stalin's military strategy errors, but he was retained in the Soviet high command because of his bravery and popularity. He was a notable horse breeder, who declared that the tank could never replace the horse as an instrument of war.
Abraham Buford II
Abraham "Abe" Buford II (January 18, 1820 - June 9, 1884) was a soldier and thoroughbred horse breeder. Born in Woodford County, Kentucky, Buford served in the United States Army during the Mexican-American War. He joined the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War, reaching the rank of General.
The post-bellum years were not kind to Buford. After a series of financial and personal losses in the 1870s, he shot himself to death.
In addition to his direct appearance as "W" in "Bedfellows", George W. Bush has been referenced in several works. For example, in "Birdwitching", a character jokes about Bush's real world challenge to America's enemies to "bring it on".
Jack Cade (c. 1420 - 12 July 1450), who sometimes used the name John Mortimer, was the leader of a popular revolt in England in 1450 against King Henry VI. The revolt saw the deaths of several of the king's favourites, including the Lord Treasurer, and the looting of London. While Cade and his followers were bought off by pardons, Cade was nonetheless deemed a traitor to the crown, and was killed in battle. His body was drawn and quartered.
Not much is known of Cade's biography beyond general information which has been coloured by tall tales and propaganda (most famously William Shakespeare's Henry VI Part 2), making it difficult to separate fact from fiction.
In addition to his more significant references in Turtledove's work, Julius Caesar is frequently mentioned in passing. In Through Darkest Europe, Dawud ibn Musa is fond of reciting quotes attributed to Caesar and those who knew him, only to be disappointed that no one ever gets the references without labored explanation.
Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus (12 AD–41 AD), more commonly known by his nickname Caligula, was the third Roman Emperor and a member of the Julio-Claudian dynasty, ruling from 37 to 41.
During his brief reign, Caligula focused much of his attention on ambitious construction projects and territorial expansion. He worked to increase the authority of the principate and struggled to maintain his position against several conspiracies to overthrow him. He was eventually assassinated in 41 by several of his own guards in a conspiracy involving the Roman Senate.
Though very popular with the Roman public throughout his reign, all surviving ancient sources write that Caligula was an insane tyrant. They focus upon anecdotes of Caligula's alleged cruelty, extravagance and sexual perversity. Surviving sources, though, are scarce and much of Caligula's reign is a mystery.
A famous quote attributed to Caligula is "I wish all mankind had one neck, so I could cut it off with a single stroke." In The Man With the Iron Heart, Lou Weissberg applies this quote to his wish regarding the SS, and attributes it to "a Roman Emperor." Likewise, in Days of Infamy Series: End of the Beginning Fletch Armitage recalled the quote by a "crazy Roman Emperor" when the Japanese collected American POWs into a camp during the second attempt to liberate Hawaii. In Conan of Venarium, the title character's face, when in his foulest mood, is described by the narrative as having this sentiment written on it. However, that novel takes place in the Hyborian Age, so none of the characters have heard of Caligula.
A popular but apocryphal story is that Caligula, in the depths of insanity, sought to appoint his horse as Consul. Turtledove references this in Liberating Atlantis, Jeremiah Stafford points to a nearby horse and jestingly nominates it to be his successor as Consul of the United States of Atlantis, then directly references Caligula's alleged scheme.
In Through Darkest Europe, Giacomo Badoglio and Khalid al-Zarzisi recall that Caligula allegedly said "Let them hate me as long as they fear me," and that this theory didn't work out, since Caligula was assassinated after a short reign.
John Calvin (French: Jean Cauvin, 10 July 1509 – 27 May 1564) was an influential French (later Swiss) theologian and pastor during the Protestant Reformation. He was a principal figure in the development of the system of Christian theology later called Calvinism. Presbyterianism, Puritanism, and the Reformed Church also view Calvin as a central figure in their histories. Central to Calvin's beliefs are the concepts of predestination (that God has already chosen those who will achieve salvation) and total depravity (the belief that all people are born into sin). The Catholic Church regarded Calvinism as heresy.
John Calvin and Martin Luther were the two most prominent Reformation figures of their time period.
In "But It Does Move", where we are reminded that, while the Catholic Church is Galileo Galilei's immediate antagonist, in his own lifetime, Calvin was a critic of the Copernican model of the solar system.
Canute II of Denmark
Canute II of Denmark, also known as Canute the Great (also spelled Cnut or Knut, c. 995– 12 November 1035), king of Denmark, England, Norway and parts of Sweden, together often referred to as the Anglo-Scandinavian or North Sea Empire. After his death, his sons fought amongst themselves, and the empire disintegrated within a decade.
As a Danish prince, Canute won the throne of England in 1016 in the wake of centuries of Viking activity in northwestern Europe. His accession to the Danish throne in 1018 brought the crowns of England and Denmark together. Canute maintained his power by uniting Danes and English under cultural bonds of wealth and custom, rather than by sheer brutality, and was remembered as a benevolent ruler. After a decade of conflict with opponents in Scandinavia, Cnut claimed the crown of Norway in Trondheim in 1028. The Swedish city Sigtuna was held by Canute, but he never controlled all of that kingdom.
A popular legend tells how King Canute, for the benefit of his foolish, flattering courtiers, had his throne placed on the beach and pretended he had the power to command the tides not to come in. When nature did not obey him, he told his audience that he was only a man and not the demigod-like figure they would have made of him. This story has often been misunderstood and inverted, to portray Canute as a deluded madman who believed he had supernatural powers.
Harry Turtledove occasionally has his characters use the story of King Canute and the tides as a shorthand metaphor of someone faced with an insurmountable task. The Two Georges, for example, has two such moments.
Alphonse Gabriel "Scarface Al" Capone (January 17, 1899 – January 25, 1947) was an Italian-American gangster who led a crime syndicate, based in Chicago, Illinois, and dedicated to the smuggling and bootlegging of liquor and other illegal activities during the Prohibition Era of the 1920s and 1930s. Although never successfully convicted of racketeering charges or murder (both of which he was certainly guilty), Capone's criminal career ended in 1931, when he was indicted and convicted by the federal government for income tax evasion. He was released from prison in 1939.
He died of heart failure, brought on in part by neurosyphilis and pneumonia.
Capone's fall to tax evasion is referenced throughout Turtledove's work. In The Man With the Iron Heart, for example, Ed McGraw expresses concern that Diana McGraw's Mothers Against the Madness in Germany might find itself in the same sort of tax trouble Al Capone did. Similarly, in Supervolcano: All Fall Down Vanessa Ferguson hopes a combative farmer in Kansas will similarly find himself meeting Capone's fate.
Marcus Aurelius Mausaeus Valerius Carausius (died 293) was a military commander of the Roman Empire in the 3rd century. He was a Menapian from Belgic Gaul. In 286, he commanded a fleet charged with eliminating pirates in the English Channel. However, after Emperor Maximian learned that Carausius may have kept the treasure recovered from the pirates, he ordered Carausius' execution. When he learned of this order, Carausius launched a revolt and declared himself emperor of the short-lived Britannic Empire, centered in Britain and northern Gaul. He held power for seven years, surviving an attempt by Maximian to retake Britain in 288 or 289. After the Western Roman Emperor Constantius Chlorus retook Gaul, Carausius was assassinated by his finance minister Allectus.
Carausius was listed in Geoffrey of Monmouth's History of the Kings of Britain (1136), and is counted as a "legendary" king of Britain. Geoffrey gave Carausius a fictional biography, claiming he was a Briton of humble birth who used the Roman Empire to gain sufficient resources to establish himself as king before dying in battle at Allectus' hand.
Dame Mary Barbara Hamilton Cartland (9 July 1901 - 21 May 2000) was a British author, one of the most prolific and commercially successful authors of the 20th Century. Her 723 novels were translated into 36 languages and reportedly sold between 750 million and 1 billion copies. She specialised in 18th Century and Victorian era pure romance. She was also a well known media personality.
Marcus Cornelius Cethegus
Marcus Gavius Cornelius Cethegus was a Roman senator active during the middle of the second century AD. He was Consul posterior for the year 170 as the colleague of Gaius Erucius Clarus. Cethegus is best known for his behavior while traveling through Greece, which provoked one person to call him a great fool, to which the philosopher Demonax replied, "Not great".
Tiberius Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus or Claudius I (1 August 10 BC – 13 October 54 AD) (Tiberius Claudius Drusus Nero Germanicus before his accession) was the fourth Roman Emperor of the Julio-Claudian dynasty, ruling from January 24, AD 41 to his death in AD 54. Born in Lugdunum in Gaul (modern-day Lyon, France), to Drusus and Antonia Minor, he was the first Roman Emperor to be born outside Italy. His reign saw an expansion of the empire, including the conquest of Britain.
Tradition holds that Claudius was poisoned, and that his wife Agrippina the Younger was ultimately responsible. While Claudius' death allowed Agrippina's son Nero to ascend to the throne, modern historians are divided on the veracity of these allegations.
In "A Massachusetts Yankee in King Arthur's Court", time-traveling John F. Kennedy finds the remains of a monument to Claudius in Cam'lod'n. Kennedy remembers Claudius was the conqueror of Britain, and watches a dog urinate on the remains of the alter.
In addition to being the focus of the "Report of the Special Committee on the Quality of Life", Christopher Columbus is referenced fleetingly in numerous Turtledove works.
There is a popular children's rhyme by Winifred Stoner, which begins: "In fourteen hundred and ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue." This is paralleled in the Atlantis Series, where Edward Radcliffe's 1452 voyage to Atlantis is commemorated by the verse "In fourteen hundred and fifty-two, Ed Radcliffe sailed the ocean blue."
Kǒng Fūzǐ (also Kung fu tzu, K'ung Fu-tse, or Kung Fu-dze, among other spellings), known more widely by the Latinized Confucius (551–479 BC) was a Chinese teacher, editor, politician, and philosopher of the Spring and Autumn period of Chinese history.
The philosophy of Confucius, also known as Confucianism, emphasized personal and governmental morality, correctness of social relationships, justice and sincerity. His followers competed successfully with many other schools during the Hundred Schools of Thought era only to be suppressed in favor of the Legalists during the Qin dynasty. Following the victory of Han over Chu after the collapse of Qin, Confucius's thoughts received official sanction and were further developed into a system known in the West as Neo-Confucianism, and later New Confucianism (Modern Neo-Confucianism).
Confucius is traditionally credited with having authored or edited many of the Chinese classic texts including all of the Five Classics, but modern scholars are cautious of attributing specific assertions to Confucius himself. Aphorisms concerning his teachings were compiled in the Analects, but only many years after his death.
In "Curse of the Three Demons", Rabbi Yen Hui of the Jewish community of Kaifeng balances his Judaism with the teachings of Kung Fu-dze (the Master). Sa'id ibn Hawqal, a devout Muslim, privately questions this approach, but doesn't raise it with the Rabbi.
President Calvin Coolidge, who has significant roles in a few Turtledove works, is the subject of a well-known apocryphal anecdote. At a White House dinner, an anonymous guest (usually female, but male in some versions) approached "Silent Cal" and said "I've got a five-dollar bet, Mr. Coolidge, that I can get you to say three words." While the precise wording varies in the telling, all versions agree that Coolidge replied "You lose," and did not speak to her again.
The "two words" anecdote is recited verbatim in the short story version of "Joe Steele," where Coolidge's handy defeat of John W. Davis in 1924 weighs heavily on the collective mind of the Democratic Party eight years later. The Coolidge-Davis race is also mentioned in the expanded novel version, but the "two words" anecdote is not repeated there.
Edwin Coppock (June 30, 1835 – December 16, 1859) was a participant in John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now in West Virginia), and was executed in the aftermath. A statue of Coppock stands in Salem, Ohio.
Juan Nepomuceno "Cheno" Cortina Goseacochea, aka the Red Robber of the Rio Grande (May 16, 1824 - October 30, 1894) was a 19th century Mexican rancher who served as a military, paramilitary, and political leader in a colorful career that eventually saw him live out his final years successively in exile, in a military prison, and under house arrest. In the Mexican popular imagination he has attained the status of folk hero. In the United States he is mainly remembered for leading a guerrilla war against the United States Army and the Texas Rangers in southern Texas from 1859 to 1861.
In "Lee at the Alamo", when Lt. Colonel Robert E. Lee is approached by Colonel Ben McCulloch of the Texas militia in February 1861, Lee initially asks McCulloch whether he wishes to request the U.S. Army's assistance in fighting a new incursion by Juan Cortina. McCulloch replies that Cortina's raiders were well contained in Mexico proper.
In addition to his direct role in Joe Steele (novel and short work, both) Father Coughlin is used as an example of a demagogue in other Turtledove works. For example, in Worldwar: Striking the Balance, Leslie Groves fears that a demagogue might arise to convince the people to trade away their freedoms for safety and food, as Father Coughlin had nearly done before the Race Invasion of Tosev 3.
Thomas Cranmer (2 July 1489 – 21 March 1556) was a leader of the English Reformation and Archbishop of Canterbury during the reigns of Kings Henry VIII and Edward VI. He helped build a favourable case for Henry's divorce from Catherine of Aragon, which resulted in the separation of the English Church from union with the Holy See. Despite this and other Protestant sympathies, Cranmer's appointment to the position of Archbishop of Canterbury was confirmed by Pope Paul III, making him the penultimate archbishop to hold the office with the Vatican's approval.
While taking a relatively conservative stance under Henry, Cranmer instituted substantial reforms under Edward. Upon the ascension of Mary I, Catholicism was reinstituted in England, and Cranmer was imprisoned for two years. He recanted during this time, but on the date of his execution, he withdrew these recantations and thus became a martyr to the Protestant cause.
Marcus Licinius Crassus
Marcus Licinius Crassus (c. 112 BC – 6 May 53 BC) was a military commander, real estate magnate, and politician of the Roman Republic. After rising to prominence for his victory in the Third Servile War (73-71 BC), Crassus served as consul in 70 BC and again in 55 BC. Crassus, Pompey the Great, and Julius Caesar formed the unofficial political alliance known as the First Triumvirate, which was strained due to the ambitions, egos, and jealousies of the three men. Crassus was appointed Governor of Syria, whence he launched a military campaign against the Parthian Empire. Crassus' campaign was a disastrous failure, ending in his defeat and death at the Battle of Carrhae.
David "Davy" Crockett (August 17, 1786 - March 6, 1836) was an early 19th century American folk hero. He served with the Tennessee Militia in the Creek War of 1813-14, an offshoot of the War of 1812. In 1814 he left the militia but returned as a lieutenant colonel in 1818. He began his political career in 1821 when he was elected to the Committee on Propositions and Grievances. In 1824 he ran for Congress from Tennessee's 9th District on the Democratic ticket. He lost that election but won the seat in 1826 and was reelected in 1828. In Congress he was initially a Jacksonian Democrat, but he opposed the President over the Indian Removal Act and defected to the National Republican Party in the face of party discipline. His opposition to the popular Jackson cost him his seat in the 1830 midterm election, but he was returned to the House from the newly-created 12th District in 1832. In 1834 he lost his seat because he had toured the East Coast promoting his autobiography instead of returning to his district to campaign. After leaving Congress, he kept one of his campaign promises: "I told the people of my district that I would serve them as faithfully as I had done; but if not, you may all go to hell, and I will go to Texas."
He took part in the Texas Revolution seeking independence from Mexico, and entered the Alamo in San Antonio in February 1836. He took part in the fateful siege and battle at that fortress and was killed by Santa Anna's men on March 6, 1836. Although there is a popular notion of him being shot down from the mission's walls by a sharpshooter, more recent research suggests (but not with certainty) that he was murdered after surrendering, whether on the same day of his capture or (according to a less widely accepted theory) in prison four years later.
In the 20th century, Crockett's life was popularized by numerous film and television dramatizations (one of which starred John Wayne), and he entered the American popular memory as one of the nation's most beloved folk heroes.
In "Lee at the Alamo", as Robert E. Lee prepares to stand his own siege in the Alamo in February 1861, he thinks of the stand made by Davy Crockett, William Travis, James Bowie and others who died almost exactly 25 years earlier.
In addition to his reasonably important reference in The Two Georges, Oliver Cromwell is the subject of some minor allusions. Cromwell's 1650 letter to the Church fathers of Scotland regarding their intent to restore Charles II of England to his throne contained the line, "I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken." In "Before the Beginning", Israel Dreyfus paraphrases the letter when he tells his superiors how to listen to time-viewer recordings of God's voice, saying: "Believe it possible that you might have been mistaken." The omission of reference to the bowels of Christ is significant, as this discovery disproved Christianity.
Aleister Crowley (born Edward Alexander Crowley; 12 October 1875 – 1 December 1947) was an English occultist, ceremonial magician, poet, painter, novelist, and mountaineer. He founded the religion of Thelema, identifying himself as the prophet entrusted with guiding humanity into the Æon of Horus in the early 20th century. A prolific writer, he published widely over the course of his life. Crowley gained widespread notoriety during his lifetime, being a recreational drug experimenter, bisexual and an individualist social critic. He was denounced in the popular press as "the wickedest man in the world" and a Satanist. There is also reason to think that he was some kind of spy for the British government.
George Washington Parke Custis
George Washington Parke Custis (April 30, 1781 – October 10, 1857), was the step-grandson and adopted son of United States President George Washington, the grandson of Martha Washington, and the father-in-law of Robert E. Lee. He spent part of his large inherited fortune constructing Arlington House plantation directly across the Potomac River from Washington, DC. Custis purchased, preserved and displayed many of George Washington's belongings, wrote historical plays about Virginia, delivered a number of patriotic addresses, and wrote a memoir of his life in the Washington household. After Custis died, his daughter, Mary Anna Randolph Custis, who had married Robert E. Lee, inherited his estate.
In The Guns of the South, when General Lee tells his wife of his newfound opposition to slavery, she tells him that her father, Custis, would have approved. Although Lee verbally agrees, he privately doubts this assertion. The elder Custis had owned hundreds of slaves and emancipated them only in his will, when they would be of no further use to him.
Custis Morgan was a squirrel adopted as a pet by Mildred Lee in Richmond, Virginia during the American Civil War. She named him after her brother Custis and Confederate General John Hunt Morgan, who had escaped from prison much as the squirrel escaped from his cage. Custis Morgan was a biter, and General Lee, feeling that the pet was not entirely safe, jokingly threatened to make him into soup. The rodent ran away one day and never came back, solving the problem.
In The Guns of the South, Turtledove cribs from the historical record for a brief joke. Mildred Lee reports to her father that Custis Morgan is happy and fat on acorns. General Lee replies that a fat squirrel had better not be seen by his hungry soldiers, prompting Mildred to hide Custis lest her father smuggle him to camp in the clothing shipments.
John W. Davis
John William Davis (April 13, 1873 – March 24, 1955) was an American politician, diplomat and lawyer. He served as a United States Representative from West Virginia (1911–1913), then as Solicitor General of the United States and US Ambassador to the United Kingdom under President Woodrow Wilson. Over a 60-year legal career, he argued 140 cases before the Supreme Court of the United States.
Davis is best known as the Democratic Party nominee for President of the United States during the 1924 presidential election, losing to Republican incumbent Calvin Coolidge and his running mate Charles Dawes. He won that nomination on the 103rd vote, only after the Democrats split between the conservative William McAdoo and the liberal Al Smith; Davis was a compromise candidate in many ways.
In both the short story "Joe Steele" and the novel of the same name, Davis' status as a compromise candidate becomes a point of concern when the 1932 Democratic Convention appears to be on the verge of deadlocking between Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Joe Steele.
Decius (Roman Emperor)
Decius (Caesar Gaius Messius Quintus Trajanus Decius Augustus, c. 201 – June 251), also known as Trajan Decius, was Roman Emperor from 249 to 251.
A distinguished politician during the reign of Philip the Arab, Decius was proclaimed emperor by his troops after successfully putting down a rebellion in Moesia. In 249, he defeated and killed Philip near Verona and was recognized as emperor by the Senate afterwards. During his reign, he attempted to strengthen the Roman state and its religion, leading to the Decian persecution where a number of prominent Christians (including Pope Fabian) were put to death. In the last year of his reign, Decius co-ruled with his son Herennius Etruscus, until they were both killed by the Goths in the Battle of Abritus. Decius was the first Roman Emperor killed in battle against a foreign enemy.
Martin Robison Delany (May 6, 1812 - January 24, 1885) was an African-American abolitionist and arguably the first proponent of American black nationalism. He became the first African American field officer in the United States Army during the American Civil War. Delany was born free. He engaged in several trades before attempting a medical degree. He was ultimately denied, which left him embittered. He became a proponent of black emigration to Africa through the 1850s. With the arrival of the Civil War, Delany decided to stay. He became a soldier, and eventually attained the rank of major in 1865. He published several works on the status of blacks in the U.S. He died of tuberculosis in 1885.
Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield, KG, PC, FRS, (12 December 1804 – 19 April 1881) was a British Prime Minister, parliamentarian, Conservative statesman and literary figure. He served in government for three decades, twice as Prime Minister. A teenage convert to Anglicanism, he was nonetheless the country's first and thus far only Prime Minister who was born Jewish. He played an instrumental role in the creation of the modern Conservative Party. William Gladstone was his frequent opponent.
In Joe Steele, when the 1932 Democratic convention sees a deadlock between Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joe Steele, Charlie Sullivan is reminded that the two-thirds rule had fractured the Democratic Party in 1860 when Stephen Douglas couldn't get over that hump.
In The Guns of the South, Douglas' strategy of campaigning for President in person - unusual for the times - is remembered by Nate Caudell. Caudell considers this practice undignified, and one more reason to look askance at Nathan Bedford Forrest, who is doing the same thing in his campaign for Confederate President. Raeford Liles, an admirer of Forrest, responds that Forrest is a much more competent and unifying leader than the divisive Douglas, who would sooner delegate a task to other people than do it himself.
In addition to his relevant posthumous references in "Before the Beginning", Alfred Dreyfus is a topic of discussion in The War That Came Early: Two Fronts. When Vaclav Jezek and Benjamin Halévy discuss the possibility of returning to France. Halévy believes he would have to go back to being a sergeant rather than a lieutenant since he was a Jew and Jezek raises the example of Dreyfus being a captain when he got into trouble. Halévy replies he was and that after things were sorted out, he got his rank back and got the chance to be shot the previous war. Jezek asked if Dreyfus survived and Halévy replies he did and made lieutenant colonel.
Edward VII of Britain
In addition to his mildly significant posthumous role in Southern Victory, King Edward VII is referenced in passing in several other Turtledove works, either in his capacity as Monarch of the United Kingdom or as Prince of Wales.
Benjamin W. Edwards (c. 1780-1837) was the brother of Haden Edwards and one of the leaders of the Fredonian Rebellion in Nacogdoches, Texas, December 1826-January, 1827. Benjamin was present when the Fredonians took the Old Stone Fort. He was also instrumental in arranging an alliance with the Cherokee led by Richard Fields. After the rebellion was crushed, Benjamin and his brother fled. Benjamin Edwards raised money for the Texas cause during the Texas Revolution. He did not return to Texas after the it gained its independence. He died of natural causes in Mississippi in 1837.
In addition to his direct appearances, Albert Einstein has been referenced in a number of other Turtledove works.
In The Hot War: Bombs Away, while President Harry Truman is gloomily reflecting on the tit-for-tat atomic bombings between the U.S. and the USSR and the next generation of bombs American physicists were working on, he recalls a quote attributed to Einstein that he didn't know what weapons World War III would be fought with, but World War IV would be fought with rocks. Truman, believing the comment was out of character for Einstein, is tempted to telephone him in Princeton for confirmation, but Midwestern frugality leads him to refrain.
In "Hindsight", when science fiction writer Pete Lundquist shares with editor Jim McGregor that fellow author Mark Gordian has somehow plagiarized a story from Lundquist that Lundquist hadn't even completed yet, both men contemplate the possibility that Gordian might be a telepath. McGregor then wonders why Gordian would read Lundquist's mind instead of Albert Einstein's, among other more influential people.
Elizabeth I of England
In addition to her direct role in Ruled Britannia, Queen Elizabeth I has been passingly referenced in a number of other Turtledove works. In The United States of Atlantis, for example, we learn that 18th century schoolboys are forced to learn the details of Elizabeth's greatness on pain of corporal punishment. When Victor Radcliff becomes one of the first Consuls of Atlantis, Meg Radcliff is excited to think that some day that would be true of her husband as well but Victor finds the idea vaguely horrifying.
In addition to his more substantive posthumous roles, Friedrich Engels is often passingly referenced in other Turtledove works. For example, in The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, La Martellita, a political officer of the Spanish Republic, names her son Carlos Federico Weinberg after Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Engels' relationship to Marx is referenced in Southern Victory by the Engels Brothers, a Vaudville troop of comedians who are analogs of The Marx Brothers.
George Washington English, Sr. (May 9, 1866 – July 1941) was a United States federal judge.
Appointed to the Eastern District of Illinois in 1918, English was impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives in 1926 for abusive treatment of lawyers and litigants appearing before him. He resigned from office on November 4, 1926, before his trial began. The U.S. Senate subsequently dismissed the charges against him.
English's impeachment is referenced in "News From the Front", after Congressman Hatton Sumners (who played a role in English's impeachment) calls for impeachment proceedings against President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Epicurus (Greek: Ἐπίκουρος, Epíkouros, "ally, comrade"; 341–270 BC) was an Ancient Greek philosopher and the founder of the school of philosophy called Epicureanism. Only a few fragments and letters of Epicurus' 300 written works remain. Much of what is known about Epicurean philosophy derives from later followers and commentators.
For Epicurus, the purpose of philosophy was to attain the happy, tranquil life, characterized by ataraxia — peace and freedom from fear —and aponia —the absence of pain—and by living a self-sufficient life surrounded by friends. He taught that pleasure and pain are measures of what is good and evil; death is the end of both body and soul and should therefore not be feared; the gods neither reward nor punish humans; the universe is infinite and eternal; and events in the world are ultimately based on the motions and interactions of atoms moving in empty space.
In Worldwar, Epicurus is one of the subjects of a philosophical conversation between Reuven Russie and his father, Moishe. Moishe notes that Epicureanism had led many people to forsake Judaism during the days before the Maccabee Revolt, just as the Race's monetary incentive to Emperor-worship is doing in 1960s Palestine.
Gaius Erucius Clarus
Gaius Erucius Clarus was a Roman senator, and Consul Prior for the year AD 170, alongside Marcus Cornelius Cethegus. His father and his own son also held the same office in different years. Despite his high office and familial prestige, little seems to be recorded about his life.
Ethelburga of Lyming
Saint Ethelburga of Lyming (d 647) was the daughter of King Ethelbert of Kent, one of the first Christian kings in Saxon England. In 625, she was given in marriage to King Edwin of Northumbria by her brother, who at that point was King of Kent, on the condition that she be allowed to practice Christianity at Edwin's court. (Edwin was a pagan at the time, though he would be baptized two years after the wedding).
Upon the death of her husband in 633, the widowed Ethelburga received from Pope Boniface V permission to set up a religious abbey. It is believed the abbey was initially coeducational. The abbey remained until King Henry VIII ordered the seizure of all monastic properties in England nine hundred years later as part of his "reforms", and its ruins are still identifiable today.
In Ruled Britannia, William Shakespeare attends St. Ethelburga's Bishopsgate in London. On Christmas, 1597, Lope de Vega is ordered to attend Christmas Mass at the parish and ensure that Shakespeare is in attendance, in order show that Shakespeare is a practicing Catholic in good standing with the Church.
Quintus Fabius Maximus
Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus Cunctator (c. 280 BC – 203 BC) was a Roman politician and general, who was born and died in Rome. He was a Roman Consul five times (233 BC, 228 BC, 215 BC, 214 BC and 209 BC) and was twice appointed Dictator, in 221 and again in 217 BC. He reached the office of Roman Censor in 230 BC. His agnomen Cunctator (cognate to the English noun cunctation) means "delayer" in Latin, and refers to his strategy in deploying troops against the Carthaginians during the Second Punic War. He is widely regarded as the father of guerrilla warfare due to his then-innovative strategy of targeting enemy supply lines in light of being largely outnumbered. His cognomen Verrucosus means "warty", a reference to a wart above his upper lip. His reputation gave rise to the adjective "Fabian."
In The Guns of the South, Judah Benjamin compares George McClellan to Fabius because McClellan had become famous for his delays in attacking during the Second American Revolution. The difference was that Fabius' delays helped his own side, whereas McClellan's delays only helped the enemy.
David Glasgow Farragut (July 5, 1801 – August 14, 1870) was an admiral in the United States Navy during the American Civil War. He is remembered for his victories at New Orleans and Mobile Bay. In popular culture, his order at the latter battle is usually paraphrased as "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!".
In the Southern Victory version of the United States, Farragut appears to be one of a precious few War of Secession officers regarded positively by later generations, as one of the Great Lakes Battleships in American Front is named USS Farragut.
Guy Fawkes (13 April 1570 – 31 January 1606) was a member of a group of provincial English Catholics who planned the failed Gunpowder Plot of 1605, an attempt to assassinate James I by exploding gunpowder beneath the House of Lords. Fawkes was placed in charge of the gunpowder they stockpiled there. Prompted by the receipt of an anonymous letter, the authorities searched Westminster Palace during the early hours of 5 November, and found Fawkes guarding the explosives.
Fawkes became synonymous with the Gunpowder Plot, the failure of which has been commemorated in Britain since 5 November 1605. His effigy is traditionally burned on a bonfire, commonly accompanied by a fireworks display.
In The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, Alistair Walsh points out to a fellow conspirator that if the 1941 British Military Coup fails, their own names will become a list of traitors for 21st-century schoolchildren to memorize, just as with Guy Fawkes' gang. The major replies that if they succeed, the schoolchildren would be memorizing the names of the other side as the traitors.
Henry Ford (July 30, 1863 – April 7, 1947) was the American founder of the Ford Motor Company and father of modern assembly lines used in mass production. Through his innovation and his business acumen, he amassed one of the world's largest fortunes. He was known for his harsh usage of workers, and his anti-Semitism (being the writer of The International Jew).
Aside from the frequent appearance of various Ford automobiles in Turtledove's work, Henry Ford himself is referenced in a few works. In The Gladiator, as part of a homework assignment in which he has to place a feudal lord, a capitalist and a Fascist in Dante's Inferno, Gianfranco Mazzilli chooses Henry Ford for his capitalist, placing him in the Fifth Circle of Hell with the hoarders and the spendthrifts.
In The Valley-Westside War, we learn that Ford's, famous statement "History is bunk," lost its credibility when crosstime travel was discovered. Understanding how the alternates worked required a knowledge of history to determine when the break-point of each alternate occurred, so the study of history suddenly gained a new level of importance. Liz Mendoza reflects on this while discussing her interest in history with Dan of The Valley. She realizes that, while important in the home timeline, history is of little use to the people of Dan's alternate, who are busy struggling to survive.
Lonnie David Franklin Jr.
See Grim Sleeper.
In The War That Came Early: Hitler's War, Franz Ferdinand's assassination is echoed on 29 September 1938, when Czechoslovak nationalist Jaroslav Stribny assassinates Sudeten German leader Konrad Henlein, giving Adolf Hitler an excuse to invade Czechoslovakia, which in turn touches off a World War II a year earlier than OTL. Hitler even takes great delight in noting that Stribny, like Franz Ferdinand's assassin Gavrilo Princip, was a Slav.
In addition to his contemporary role in The Great War, Franz Joseph I is referenced in other Turtledove works. Some stories, such as the novel In the Presence of Mine Enemies, compare his muttonchops to another character's.
In The Hot War: Bombs Away, the fact that a number of nationalities that had once been ruled by Austria-Hungary, are now serving in World War III side by side with only German as a common language, brings Franz Joseph to mind immediately. 
Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor
Frederick II (26 December 1194 – 13 December 1250), was one of the most powerful Holy Roman Emperors of the Middle Ages and head of the House of Hohenstaufen. His political and cultural ambitions, based in Sicily and stretching through Italy to Germany, and even to Jerusalem, were enormous; however, his enemies, especially the popes, prevailed, and his dynasty collapsed soon after his death.
In Supervolcano, Susan Ruppelt writes her doctoral thesis on Frederick II, but subsequently has difficultly finding work in academia. In "The Breaking of Nations", Jacob (or is it Justin) Yoshida is cheerfully following a similar path.
In addition to his more significant references in Turtledove's work, Friedrich the Great and his military genius are referenced fleetingly on other occasions. In After the Downfall, Hasso Pemsel, an immigrant from the 20th century, uses his modern know-how to educate the medieval-level Grenye people in tactical warfare. He teaches them how to build artillery guns, but is hamstrung by the limited materials available, admitting to himself that even Friedrich would find the results pathetic and primitive.
Frederick IV of Denmark
Frederick IV (11 October 1671 – 12 October 1730) was the king of Denmark and Norway from 1699 until his death. Frederick was the son of King Christian V and his consort Charlotte Amalie of Hesse-Kassel.
In 1725, he established the Flensborg-Hus as an orphanage in Flensborg, Denmark, which became Flensburg, Germany in the 19th century. In Colonization: Aftershocks, Major General Johannes Drucker and his family stay at the Flensborg-Hus, now a hotel, and notice the monogram of Frederick IV on the gate.
John C. Frémont
In addition to his background role in The Guns of the South, General John C. Frémont's failures in the political arena are referenced in Settling Accounts: Return Engagement, when the name of supporting character Fremont Blaine Dalby elicits chuckles from his fellow sailors.
Sigmund Freud (6 May 1856 - 23 September 1939) was an Austrian psychoanalyst widely hailed as the founding father of that field. He is best known for his theories of the unconscious mind and the defense mechanism of repression, and for creating the clinical practice of psychoanalysis for treating psychopathology through dialogue between a patient, technically referred to as an "analysand", and a psychoanalyst. Freud is also renowned for his redefinition of sexual desire as the primary motivational energy of human life, as well as for his therapeutic techniques, including the use of free association, his theory of transference in the therapeutic relationship, and the interpretation of dreams as sources of insight into unconscious desires. He was an early neurological researcher into cerebral palsy, and a prolific essayist, drawing on psychoanalysis to contribute to the history, interpretation and critique of culture.
In After the Downfall, protagonist Hasso Pemsel remembers living in Nazi Germany where Freud was regarded as a crazy Jew. Pemsel then declares that Freud might have been onto something, when he notices that Wizard Aderno's interrogations of suspected Grenye spies have an apparent sexual element.
In The War That Came Early: West and East, Samuel Goldman identifies Sigmund Freud as one of the Jewish intellectuals whom the Nazis believed threatened Germany through the introduction of foreign ideas. In the same volume, we learn that Chaim Weinberg had attended a lecture on cognitive dissonance, although Weinberg can't remember Freud's name.
Uziel "Uzi" Gal (Hebrew: עוזיאל "עוזי" גל, born Gotthard Glas; 15 December 1923 – 7 September 2002), was a German-born Israeli gun designer, best remembered as the designer and namesake of the Uzi submachine gun.
In The Guns of the South, Robert E. Lee is puzzled by the sight of a time-displaced Uzi, and Konrad de Buys explains that it was invented by Uziel Gal, an Israeli. Lee is confused as to how an Israelite could have made such a weapon, but drops the matter because he has other things on his mind.
In addition to his more significant Turtledove roles, Galileo is referenced in The Valley-Westside War, when Liz Mendoza convinces Dan of the validity of the heliocentric theory, by pointing out the preponderance of Old Time scientists who agreed on it. She then realizes that this "argument from authority" was the same tactic which Catholic Church had used to discredit Galileo, and the Church turned out to be wrong.
In addition to his contemporary role in Southern Victory, George V is the subject of minor references in other works. For example, in The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, George's state funeral and its broadcast on BBC radio is the last such funeral until that of Minister of War Winston Churchill in the summer of 1940.
In addition to his direct role in How Few Remain, Geronimo is also briefly referenced in Days of Infamy. On his way to the Pensacola, Florida Naval Flight School, Joe Crosetti is shown Fort Pickens on Santa Rosa Islands. The bus driver tells him that the fort had held Geronimo for a while after they caught him.
In addition to his more direct roles in Turtledove's work, Mikhail Gorbachev is referenced in an oblique posthumous fashion in Turtledove's contributions to Jerry Pournelle's War World Series. In those works, the New Soviet Men have a ritual in which their committee officers grind their heels in a mosaic portrait of an "ordinary looking man with a high forehead and blood colored birthmark", i.e., Gorbachev, on it. After that, they bow to two portraits on the wall, one of a balding man with a neatly trimmed beard, the other of a clean shaven man with a bushy moustache.
In addition to his more relevant roles in Turtledove's work, Nazi Germany's Reichsmarschall Hermann Göring is referenced in other stories for his infamous role in World War II and the Holocaust. In After the Downfall, Hasso Pemsel is frequently reminded of Goering by the personality and mannerisms of King Bottero.
Anna Adams Gordon (July 21, 1853 – June 15, 1931) was an American social reformer, songwriter, and, as national president of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union when the 18th Amendment to the United States Constitution was adopted, a major figure in the Temperance movement. She is generally understood to have had a lesbian romance with her WCTU predecessor Frances Willard at some point.
In Worldwar: Upsetting the Balance while Mutt Daniels, still mourning the death of his friend Lucille Potter (whose "coming out" awakened his homophobia), is quartered in the Frances Willard House. There he sees a plaque memorializing Gordon as Willard's "lifelong companion," and ponders the meaning of that phrase.
Ulysses S. Grant
In the OTL novel Fort Pillow, Grant has just been promoted to General-in-Chief and is on the mind of several characters. Most importantly, POV Benjamin Robinson compares his and Grant's rags-to-riches experiences - Grant from leather-tanner to General, and Robinson from slave to Sergeant - all the while realizing that Grant started from an infinitely more advantageous beginning.
In "Must and Shall," where the Union won the Civil War under circumstances slightly different from OTL, a World War II tank is called the M3 Grant, implying that he was respected for his leadership in that timeline as well.
Pope Gregory XIII
Pope Gregory XIII (born Ugo Boncompagni, 7 January 1502 – 10 April 1585) was the Supreme Pontiff of the Catholic Church from 1572 to 1585. During his reign, he instituted several reforms within the Church. Most famously, he decreed that the Julian Calendar be abandoned in favor of the more accurate Gregorian Calendar in all Catholic countries.
Lonnie David Franklin Jr. (born August 30, 1952), nicknamed the Grim Sleeper, is a serial killer responsible for at least ten murders and one attempted murder in Los Angeles, California over two period between 1985 and 1988, and again between 2002 and 2007. The attacker was dubbed the "Grim Sleeper" because of the 14-year break in his crimes between 1988 to 2002. In July 2010, Franklin was arrested as a suspect, and, after many delays, his trial began in February 2016. On May 5, 2016, the jury convicted him of killing nine women and one teenage girl. On June 6 the jury returned death verdicts, and Franklin was formally sentenced to death on August 10.
Franklin became a suspect in 2010 through "Familial DNA Database Searching”. His son was arrested and convicted in a felony weapons charge and swabbed for DNA in 2009. When the son's DNA was entered into the database of convicted felons, detectives were alerted to a partial match to evidence found at the "Grim Sleeper" crime scenes indicating a close relative might be a complete match. A sample of Franklin's DNA was then obtained and did match the DNA found at the crime scenes leading to trial and conviction.
In the Supervolcano series, the South Bay Strangler is caught through Familial DNA Database Searching in much the same way Franklin was, and the Grim Sleeper is mentioned by at least one character.
In addition to his more substantial roles in Turtledove's work, General Leslie Groves is referenced in The Hot War: Bombs Away. While ramrodding the Manhattan Project in the early 1940s, Groves had stated that the Russians would be unable to make their own atom bombs before the late 1960s. This prediction proves unrealistically optimistic with the outbreak of atomic war in 1951, and President Truman reflects that Groves is much better at engineering than at prophecy.
Robert d'Hauteville, known as Guiscard, Duke of Apulia and Calabria, (c. 1015 – 17 July 1085) was a Norman adventurer and mercenary. He played an important role in the Norman conquest of southern Italy and Sicily and the ouster of the Byzantine Empire from the region.
Gustav II Adolf (9 December 1594 – 6 November 1632); widely known by his Latinized name Gustavus Adolphus the Great, was King of Sweden and Grand Prince of Finland from 1611 to his death, and is credited as the founder of Sweden as a Great Power. He led Sweden to military supremacy during the Thirty Years War, helping to determine the political as well as the religious balance of power in Europe.
He is often regarded as one of the greatest military commanders of all time, with innovative use of combined arms. His most notable military victory was the Battle of Breitenfeld. With a superb military machine with good weapons, excellent training, and effective field artillery, backed by an efficient government which could provide necessary funds, Gustavus Adolphus was poised to make himself a major European leader, but he was killed at the Battle of Lützen in 1632. He was ably assisted in his efforts by Count Axel Oxenstierna, the Lord High Chancellor of Sweden, who also acted as regent after his death.
In The United States of Atlantis, when Victor Radcliff rejects Habakkuk Biddiscombe's plan to directly target Charles Cornwallis, he does so on the grounds that, while Cornwallis is capable and clever, he was not at the level of Gustavus Adolphus, and that the cost of targeting Cornwallis would outweigh any benefit.
- Gustavus Adolphus at the Eric Flint Wiki.
Field Marshal Douglas Haig, 1st Earl Haig, KT, GCB, OM, GCVO, KCIE, ADC (19 June 1861 – 29 January 1928) was a senior officer of the British Army. During the First World War he commanded the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) on the Western Front from late 1915 until the end of the war. He was commander during the Battle of the Somme, the battle with one of the highest casualties in British military history, the Third Battle of Ypres, and the Hundred Days Offensive, which led to the armistice of 11 November 1918.
Haig's reputation is disputed among two schools of thought. One intensely criticises "Butcher Haig" for his leadership during the War, which led to two million British casualties under his command. This version makes Haig the model of class-based incompetent commanders unable to grasp modern tactics and technology. The other argues that the public hatred in which Haig's name had come to be held, failed to recognize the adoption of new tactics and technologies by forces under his command, the important role played by British forces in the Entente victory of 1918, and that high casualties were a consequence of the tactical and strategic realities of the time.
Haig's poor reputation remains a point of reference for Alistair Walsh and soldiers under his supervision in The War That Came Early: Hitler's War, where the titular version of the Second World War starts out by repeating all the worst blunders of the First one.
Hammurabi (c. 1810 BC-1750 BC), sometimes spelt Khammurapikh or Ammurāpi ("kinsman-healer"), was the sixth king of the First Babylonian Dynasty, reigning from 1792 BC to his death. After his father Sin-Muballit abdicated due to failing health, Hammurabi extended Babylon's control throughout Mesopotamia via military campaigns. Hammurabi is best known for the Code of Hammurabi, one of the earliest surviving codes of law in recorded history, which had a profound influence on most subsequent legal systems.
Hammurabi's code is referenced in a number of Turtledove's works. For example, in In the Presence of Mine Enemies, archaeological discovery in the Babylonian ruins prompts some reconsideration of the age of the code, and an argument between Lise Gimpel and Willi Dorsch.
Warren G. Harding
In addition to his status as a time-viewer porn star in "Before the Beginning", Warren G. Harding and his unfortunate presidency are referenced throughout Turtledove's work. In the short story version of "Joe Steele", Harding's 1920 landslide weighs heavily on the Democratic National Convention's collective mind, making the 1932 deadlock between Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joe Steele that much more frustrating. The 1920 race is not referenced at all in the novel. In "News From the Front", Franklin D. Roosevelt's approval ratings for May 1942 are well below those of Harding's at his nadir.
Harold Godwinson (c. 1022 – 14 October 1066) was the last Anglo-Saxon king of England. Harold reigned from 6 January 1066 until his death at the Battle of Hastings on 14 October, fighting the Norman invaders led by William the Conqueror.
Nathan Hale (June 6, 1755 – September 22, 1776) was an American soldier and spy for the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. He volunteered for an intelligence-gathering mission in New York City but was captured by the British and executed. His last words before being hanged were purported to be "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Hale has long been considered an American hero and, in 1985, he was officially designated the state hero of Connecticut.
In The Guns of the South, former President Abraham Lincoln invokes the name of Nathan Hale as one the iconic figures of American in his speech to the people of Louisville on April 14, 1865. Lincoln admonishes that if Kentucky left the Union to join the Confederacy, the people would be turning their backs on Hale among others.
William Henry Harrison
William Henry Harrison (February 9, 1773 - April 4, 1841), commonly called Old Tippecanoe, was the ninth President of the United States, serving from March 4, 1841 until his death exactly one month later. Riding to office on the strength of his record as a general in the War of 1812, Harrison also had a long political career as Representative, Senator, Ambassador, and other offices. Harrison was the first president elected from the Whig Party (John Quincy Adams had joined that party after his presidency), the first to pass his 68th birthday before his inauguration (a record unmatched until Ronald Reagan in 1981), and the first to die in office. He was also the last president born before the American Revolution, and had the shortest presidency as of this writing.
Harrison's death has overshadowed nearly every other aspect of his life. After winning the 1840 election, Harrison gave an inaugural address that lasted for nearly two hours on March 4, 1841, a cold and wet day. He had neglected to wear sufficient protective clothing, and soon contracted pneumonia. Within 32 days, before he could prove his qualities as President, Harrison was dead from this pneumonia, exacerbated by typhoid caused by the poor sanitary conditions of the White House environs. Virtually all of his term was served by his elected Vice President, John Tyler.
In Joe Steele, President Joe Steele takes his second oath of office from Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes in very cold weather outdoors. Charlie Sullivan observes that Hughes seemed liable to catch pneumonia, and remembers how William Henry Harrison had died from pneumonia caught at his own inauguration. He questions whether that is Steele's intent regarding Hughes.
William Van Buren
|President of the United States
March 4-April 4, 1841
Hārūn al-Rashīd (Arabic: and Persian:هارون الرشيد ); also spelled Harun ar-Rashid; English: Aaron the Upright, Aaron the Just, or Aaron the Rightly-Guided; (17 March 763 – 23 March 809) was the fifth and most famous Abbasid Caliph. He was born in Rayy, near Tehran, Iran, and lived in Baghdad, Iraq and most of his reign in Ar Raqqah at the middle Euphrates.
He ruled from 786 to 809, and his time was marked by scientific, cultural and religious prosperity. Art and music also flourished significantly during his reign. He established the library Bayt al-Hikma ("House of Wisdom"). It was during his rule that Baghdad had a period of great prosperity.
In addition to having had an alternate nationality in The Two Georges, restaurateur Fred Harvey is referenced in The House of Daniel, when Jack Spivey considers buying "Fred Harvey food" at a train station before deciding to seek out less expensive fare. This makes Harvey one of a handful of historical figures to be identified in the novel by the correct first and last name, rather than a punning analogue.
John Porter Hatch
John Porter Hatch (January 9, 1822 – April 12, 1901) was a career American soldier who served as general in the United States Army during the American Civil War. He received a Medal of Honor for gallantry in action at the September 1862 Battle of South Mountain during the Maryland Campaign.
Stephen William Hawking (8 January 1942 - 14 March 2018) was an English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, author and Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology within the University of Cambridge. His scientific works include a collaboration with Roger Penrose on gravitational singularity theorems in the framework of general relativity, and the theoretical prediction that black holes emit radiation, often called Hawking radiation. Hawking was the first to set forth a theory of cosmology explained by a union of the general theory of relativity and quantum mechanics. He was a vigorous supporter of the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics.
He was an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a lifetime member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States. Hawking was the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge between 1979 and 2009 and achieved commercial success with works of popular science in which he discussed his own theories and cosmology in general; his book A Brief History of Time appeared on the British Sunday Times best-seller list for a record-breaking 237 weeks.
Hawking suffered from a rare early-onset, slow-progressing form of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as motor neurone disease in the United Kingdom, that gradually paralysed him over three decades. Beginning in the late 1980s, he communicated using a single cheek muscle attached to a speech-generating device.
Isaac Roberts Hawkins (May 16, 1818 - August 12, 1880) was an American politician and soldier. A lawyer by profession, Hawkins served during the Mexican-American War, and was part of a peace delegation from Tennessee, which unsuccessfully sought to diffuse the pending Civil War in 1861. He joined the United States Army in 1862. In March 1864, he and his regiment was captured at Union City, Tennessee by Confederate Colonel William Duckworth, after Duckworth tricked Hawkins into believing he faced a much larger Confederate force, much to the disgust of the Union officers.
Hawkins was released and returned to active service. After the war, he served in the U.S. congress from 1865 to 1871.
Henry II of England
Henry II (5 March 1133 – 6 July 1189) ruled as King of England (1154–1189), Count of Anjou, Duke of Normandy, Duke of Aquitaine, Duke of Gascony, Count of Nantes, Lord of Ireland and, at various times, controlled parts of Wales, Scotland and western France. Henry was the first of the House of Plantagenet to rule England, the first English monarch to claim sovereignty over Ireland, and was the great-grandson of William the Conqueror.
Henry is remembered for his early efforts to consolidate English hegemony over the British Isles, legal reform, and efforts to assert royal dominance over the nobles (relatively successful) and the Catholic Church (generally unsuccessful). These last efforts indirectly caused the death of Thomas Beckett, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who most tenaciously opposed Henry. Legend has it that Henry exclaimed "Will no one rid me of this troublesome priest?" He actual words were "What miserable drones and traitors have I nurtured and promoted in my household, who let their lord be treated with such shameful contempt by a low-born cleric!" Regardless of what the king said, his supporters took it upon themselves to murder Beckett.
Henry was ultimately undone by his heir, Richard the Lionheart, who defeated him on the battlefield. Henry subsequently died a bitter man.
Harry Turtledove frequently has his characters allude in a shorthand fashion to Henry's lament and Beckett's resulting murder. One particularly significant moment is in conversation between William Shakespeare and Richard Burbage in Ruled Britannia. Another comes in The Great War: Breakthroughs when Abner Dowling attempt to talk sense into General Custer, with the obscure pearl of wisdom being completely lost on Custer, if not on most of the readers as well.
Henry IV of France
Henry IV, (13 December 1553 – 14 May 1610), Henri-Quatre in French, was King of Navarre (as Henri III) from 1572 to 1610 and King of France from 1589 to 1610. He was the first monarch of the Bourbon branch of the Capetian dynasty in France.
Baptised Catholic, he converted to Protestantism along with his mother Jeanne d'Albret, Queen of Navarre. He inherited the throne of Navarre, a small kingdom in the Pyrenees between France and Spain, in 1572, on the death of his mother. As a Huguenot (member of a sect based on John Calvin's doctrine), Henry was involved in the Wars of Religion. He barely escaped the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre and later led protestant forces against the French Royal Army.
As a prince de sang by his father, Antoine de Bourbon, he was also the natural heir to the throne of France. On the death of the childless Henri III (his distant cousin, member of the House of Valois), he ascended the throne of France in 1589, but had to abjure his Calvinist faith. However, his coronation was followed by a four-year war against the Catholic League to establish his legitimacy.
One of the most popular French kings, both during and after his reign, Henry showed great care for the welfare of his subjects and, as a politique, displayed an unusual religious tolerance for the time. He notably enacted the Edict of Nantes, in 1598, which guaranteed religious liberties to the Protestants, thereby effectively ending the civil war. He was assassinated in 1610 by François Ravaillac, a fanatical Catholic.
On 25 July 1593, with the encouragement of the great love of his life, Gabrielle d'Estrées, Henry permanently renounced Protestantism, thus earning the resentment of the Huguenots and of his former ally, Queen Elizabeth I of England. He was said to have declared that "Paris vaut bien une messe" ("Paris is well worth a Mass"), though there is some doubt whether he really said this.
While Henry's supposed observation regarding Paris' value is in doubt, it does find itself into a few Turtledove works. In The War That Came Early series, both Vaclav Jezek and Alistair Walsh recall the quote while fighting the German push on Paris.
Patrick Henry (May 29, 1736 – June 6, 1799) was an American attorney, planter and politician who became known as an orator during the movement for independence in Virginia in the 1770s. A Founding Father, he served as the first and sixth post-colonial Governor of Virginia, from 1776 to 1779 and from 1784 to 1786.
Henry led the opposition to the Stamp Act 1765 and is remembered for his "Give me liberty, or give me death!" speech. Along with Samuel Adams and Thomas Paine, he is regarded as one of the most influential champions of Republicanism and an invested promoter of the American Revolution and its fight for independence.
After the Revolution, Henry was a leader of the anti-federalists in Virginia. He opposed the United States Constitution, fearing that it endangered the rights of the States as well as the freedoms of individuals; he helped gain adoption of the Bill of Rights. By 1798 however, he supported President John Adams and the Federalists; he denounced passage of the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions as he feared the social unrest and widespread executions that had followed the increasing radicalism of the French Revolution.
As a married man, Henry was an expanding landowner. By 1779, along with his cousin and her husband, Henry owned a 10,000-acre (40 km2) plantation known by the name of Leatherwood. He is also recorded to have purchased up to 78 slaves. In 1794 he and his wife retired to Red Hill Plantation, which had 520 acres (2.1 km2) in Charlotte County that was also a functioning tobacco plantation.
In The Guns of the South, former President Abraham Lincoln evokes Patrick Henry in his speech to the people of Louisville on April 14, 1865. Lincoln admonishes that if Kentucky left the Union to join the Confederacy, the people would be turning their backs on Henry among others. Robert E. Lee finds this argument weak, as the Confederates have already taken Henry's home state of Virginia, and his practice of owning slaves, with them when they seceded.
Hero of Alexandria
Hero (or Heron) of Alexandria (c. 10–70 AD) was an Ancient Greek mathematician and engineer who was active in his native city of Alexandria, Roman Egypt. He is considered the greatest experimenter of antiquity and his work is representative of the Hellenistic scientific tradition. Hero published a well recognized description of a steam-powered device called an aeolipile (hence sometimes called a "Hero engine"). Among his most famous inventions was a windwheel, constituting the earliest instance of wind harnessing on land. He is said to have been a follower of the Atomists. Some of his ideas were derived from the works of Ctesibius. Much of Hero's original writings and designs have been lost, but some of his works were preserved in Arab manuscripts.
In addition to his many important appearances in certain of Turtledove's works, Adolf Hitler looms large enough that he's often referenced in passing in a number of works as well, usually referencing the tremendous impact Hitler had on history.
In "Hail! Hail!", Julius Marx finds Hitler and his anti-Semitism terrifying in 1934, and reflects Charlie Chaplin does as well. While discussing the Jews and their place in the world of 1934 with Adolphus Sterne, Marx says that things in Germany aren't so great for the Jews, but doesn't get into Hitler in depth.
In The House of Daniel, a "noisy fella on the far side of the ocean" uses the fylfot (swastika) as his personal symbol in 1934. As this urban fantasy novel is full of analogs to historical people, this person is probably a close analog of Hitler, rather than Hitler proper.
In S.M. Stirling's, The Domination of the Draka timeline, Hitler still launched a destructive war, but died under completely different circumstances. In his contribution to this world, "The Last Word", Turtledove quickly references Hitler.
Alois Hitler, Jr.
Alois Hitler, Jr., born Alois Matzelsberger (7 June 1882 – 3 January 1956), was the son of Alois Hitler and Franziska Matzelsberger and the half-brother of Adolf Hitler.
Alois was a business man before and during World War II. His establishment was popular with Nazi stormtroopers, but historical evidence indicates that Alois and Adolf were never close, and that Alois may have even resented Adolf. After the war, Alois was taken into custody by the British, but was quickly released when they determined he had nothing to do with his half-brother's regime.
In The Man With the Iron Heart, Alois Hitler's former establishment, now Fent's Establishment, is the location where Soviet NKVD Captain Vladimir Bokov transfers custody of displaced person Shmuel Birnbaum to American CIC officers Howard Frank and Lou Weissberg.
Budai, Hotei or Pu-Tai (Chinese: 布袋; pinyin: Bùdài; Japanese: 布袋, Vietnamese: Bố Đại), whose name literally means "Cloth Sack" (d. c. 916), was a Chinese Buddhist monk whose jolly nature, humorous personality, and eccentric lifestyle distinguished him from most Buddhist masters or figures. He is almost always shown smiling or laughing, hence his nickname in Chinese, the "Laughing Buddha" (Chinese: 笑佛; pinyin: Xiào Fó). The main textual evidence pointing to Budai resides in a collection of Zen Buddhist monks’ biographies known as the "Jingde Chuandeng Lu", also known as The Transmission of the Lamp. Budai was revered from both a folkloric standpoint as a strange, wandering vagabond of the people as well as from his newfound personage within the context of the Chan tradition as a "mendicant priest" who brought abundance, fortune, and joy to all he encountered with the help of his mystical "cloth sack" bag. After his death he was deified and introduced into the Zen Buddhist pantheon.
In Worldwar: In the Balance, Yi Min begins to think of himself as the personification of Ho Tei, the little fat god of luck, while counting the money he made from selling ginger to foolish Lizards.
In "Hail! Hail!", Leonard Marx notes that the armadillo is called the "Hoover hog" in 1934. When Adolphus Sterne asks who Hoover is, Julius Marx says that Hoover is "the guy who vacuumed up prosperity." The other Marx Brothers think the joke is hilarious, but Sterne doesn't get it.
Oliver Otis Howard
Oliver Otis Howard (November 8, 1830 – October 26, 1909) was a United States Army general during the American Civil War. He commanded the XI Corps of the Army of the Potomac at the battles of Chancellorsville and Gettysburg (The corps was routed at both battles, causing the Union lines of which it was part to collapse. This led many observers to underestimate Howard's competence.) and continued to command the corps when it was detached from the Army and sent west in the fall of 1863, to serve with William Sherman's forces. He was with Sherman on the "March to the Sea" through Georgia.
After the Civil War, Howard fought the Nez Perce, and founded Howard University in Washington, DC.
In The Guns of the South, Howard is one of several Union generals who are used as "imaginary" targets when the Rivington Men demonstrate the AK-47 for General Robert E. Lee and his staff early in 1864.
Hulagu Khan, also known as Hülegü or Hulegu (Mongolian: Хүлэгү/ᠬᠦᠯᠡᠭᠦ, translit. Hu’legu’/Qülegü; Chagatay: ہلاکو; Persian: هولاکو خان, Hulâgu xân; Chinese: 旭烈兀; pinyin: Xùlièwù [ɕû.ljê.û]; c. 1218 – 8 February 1265), was a Mongol ruler who conquered much of Western Asia. Son of Tolui and the Keraite princess Sorghaghtani Beki, he was a grandson of Temujin, Genghis Khan and brother of Ariq Böke, Möngke Khan, and Kublai Khan.
Hulagu's army greatly expanded the southwestern portion of the Mongol Empire, founding the Ilkhanate of Persia, a precursor to the eventual Safavid dynasty, and then the modern state of Iran. Under Hulagu's leadership, the siege of Baghdad (1258) destroyed Baghdad's standing in the Islamic world and weakened Damascus, causing a shift of Islamic influence to the Mamluk Sultanate in Cairo.
Robert Mercer Taliaferro Hunter (April 21, 1809 – July 18, 1887) was a Virginian lawyer and politician. He was a U.S. Representative (1837–1843, 1845–1847), Speaker of the House (1839–1841), and U.S. Senator (1847–1861). During the American Civil War he was Confederate States Secretary of State (1861–1862) and then a Confederate Senator (1862–1865). After the war, he served as Treasurer of Virginia (1874–1880), and customs collector in 1885 until his death.
In The Guns of the South, Judah Benjamin, Hunter's successor as Secretary of State, discusses Hunter's 1862 doctrine which was presented to British and French foreign ministers in the hope of obtaining those countries' recognition of the CSA. This is part of a series of quid pro quo accusations between Union and Confederate peace commissioners, regarding how far their respective governments are willing to respect the rights of certain citizens to leave the fold.
Stephen A. Hurlbut
Stephen Augustus Hurlbut (November 29, 1815 – March 27, 1882), was a politician, diplomat, and commander of the U.S. Army of the Gulf in the American Civil War. A lawyer by trade, Hurlbut was born in South Carolina, but served the Union. After the war, he served as ambassador to Colombia, a U.S. House Representative from 1873 to 1876, and ambassador to Peru until his death.
Fielding Hurst (1810 - April 3, 1882) was a Union loyalist from Tennessee, who led a cavalry regiment during the American Civil War. His Sixth Cavalry earned a reputation for visiting harsh punishment upon his pro-Confederate neighbors. Even after his death, Hurst's name continues to be vilified in his home state.
In addition to his more significant posthumous roles in Turtledove's works, US President Andrew Jackson's oft-quoted, and yet likely apocryphal, response to Worcester v. Georgia, "John Marshall has made his decision; now let him enforce it!", has been referenced more than once in Turtledove's works. In Joe Steele, the title chraracter, a tyrannical President, adopts the habit of using a version of the phrase whenever a judge makes a ruling that goes against him. He uses this phrase rather than having the offending judge crippled or killed. Jackson is also invoked in President Steele's Pearl Harbor speech.
In American Empire: The Victorious Opposition, Jake Featherston, the dictatorial Confederate States President, announces that Chief Justice "James McReynolds has made his decision, now let him enforce it!" This comes after the Supreme Court of the Confederate States strikes down Featherston's dam building project as unconstitutional.
Jackson is fleetingly referenced in The Guns of the South. Robert E. Lee reflects on how the rise of low-born Jackson to the US Presidency, which had previously been held by six men of aristocratic background, is being mirrored by the possibility of Nathan Bedford Forrest becoming the second CS President.
In addition to his POV role in How Few Remain, Stonewall Jackson is referenced in passing in a few Turtledove works. For example, his death is still on the mind of a few of his fellows in The Guns of the South.
James II of England
James II (14 October 1633 – 16 September 1701) was King of England and Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII from 6 February 1685 until his ouster in 1688. He was the last Roman Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland. While James did pursue a policy of toleration for Catholics and Protestant non-conformists, he was also a believer in the Divine Right of Kings, and pursued absolutist policies. When he produced a Catholic heir, leading nobles called on William III of Orange (James's son-in-law and nephew) to land an invasion army from the Netherlands. James fled England (but he did not abdicate) in the Glorious Revolution of 1688, and was replaced by William of Orange, who became king as William III, ruling jointly with his wife (James's daughter) Mary II. James made one serious attempt to recover his crowns, when he landed in Ireland in 1689 but, after the defeat of the Jacobite forces by the Williamite forces at the Battle of the Boyne in Ireland in July 1690, James settled in France. He lived out the rest of his life as a pretender at a court sponsored by his cousin and ally, King Louis XIV.
James II's overthrow in 1688 is referenced in The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, as several characters prepare to launch a military coup in Britain to remove the increasingly authoritarian Prime Minister Sir Horace Wilson in 1941.
While Thomas Jefferson hasn't been front and center in Turtledove's work, he is referenced in several works.
In Joe Steele, Leon Trotsky and Joe Steele share an exchange wherein Trotsky states "Revolution never sleeps", and Steele retorts by way of Jefferson: "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure". Steele then adds that they had rid the world of savage tyrants over the last few years, to which Trotsky replies "and a good many patriots, too". Jefferson is also invoked in President Steele's Pearl Harbor speech.
In The Guns of the South, Abraham Lincoln invokes Jefferson while campaigning for Kentucky to remain part of the United States rather than join the Confederate States, and that in leaving, Kentucky would be turning its back on Jefferson. Robert E. Lee finds this argument weak, as the Confederates have already taken Jefferson's home state of Virginia, and his practice of owning slaves, with them when they seceded.
Thomas Jenkins was headmaster of King Edward VI Grammar School in Stratford-Upon-Avon, England from 1575 until 1579. William Shakespeare was likely one of his students, and is thought to have based the character Sir Hugh Evans in The Merry Wives of Windsor on Jenkins. It is believed that Jenkins' subjects included ancient British history and legends, which instilled in Shakespeare an interest in the settings for King Lear and Cymbeline. Though born in London, Jenkins' surname suggests his parents were from Wales; Shakespeare's fondness for including Welsh characters and cultural references in his plays has been linked to Jenkins for this reason.
In Ruled Britannia, while Lord Burghley is quizzing Shakespeare on his knowledge of Latin, Shakespeare thinks of how Jenkins had used a switch to make sure the lessons stayed in young William's mind.
In "News From the Front", Johnson's impeachment, and the Senate's subsequent failure by one vote to remove him from the presidency, are on the minds of the anti-Franklin D. Roosevelt faction in June 1942.
In Joe Steele, as President Joe Steele is consolidating his power, and is meeting resistance from the Supreme Court of the United States, Esther Sullivan suggests that maybe certain judges can be impeached. Her husband, Charlie, argues that the Johnson impeachment stood for the proposition that public officials cannot be impeached purely for political reasons. When John Nance Garner is impeached at the end of the novel, Johnson isn't mentioned directly, although the fact that it's been 85 years since a president was impeached is discussed at some length.
John Paul Jones
John Paul Jones (born John Paul; July 6, 1747 – July 18, 1792) was the United States' first well-known naval commander in the American Revolutionary War. He made many friends and enemies among America's political elites, and his actions in British waters during the Revolution earned him an international reputation which persists to this day. As such, he is sometimes referred to as the "Father of the United States Navy," (an epithet that he shares with John Barry). He later served in the Imperial Russian Navy, subsequently obtaining the rank of rear admiral.
In The Guns of the South, former President Abraham Lincoln invokes the name of John Paul Jones as one the iconic figures of American in his speech to the people of Louisville on April 14, 1865. Lincoln admonishes that if Kentucky left the Union to join the Confederacy, the people would be turning their backs on Jones among others.
Justin I (Latin: Flavius Iustinus; Greek: Ἰουστῖνος, Ioustînos; 2 February 450 – 1 August 527) was the Byzantine emperor from 518 to 527. He rose through the ranks of the army to become commander of the imperial guard, and when Emperor Anastasius died he out-maneouvered his rivals and was elected as his successor, in spite of being almost 70 years old. His reign is significant for the founding of the Justinian dynasty that included his eminent nephew Justinian I and three succeeding emperors. His consort was Empress Euphemia.
During Justin's reign, Byzantine ships carried soldiers from the allied Kingdom of Axum across the Red Sea. In "The Fake Pandemic", Tribonian points this fact out to Peter, the naval commander at Clysma, in aid to Tribonian's argument that the Plague of Justinian can be stopped in the Red Sea.
During his reign, Justinian I ordered a compilation of Roman law to that point. The 50 volume Digest remains available to this day, and Turtledove has been known to have his lawyer characters at least reference this work. For example, in A Different Flesh, the Digest is still referenced by law students in the early 19th century in the Federated Commonwealths of America.
Christine Keeler (22 February 1942 - 4 December 2017) was a British model and showgirl. Her involvement with British government minister John Profumo discredited the Conservative government of Prime Minister Harold Macmillan in 1963.
The first scene of "A Massachusetts Yankee in King Arthur's Court" is set during the Profumo scandal. In the opening pages of the story, as Prime Minister Macmillan greets United States President John F. Kennedy, people in the crowd outside 10 Downing Street yell out things like "How's Christine in the sack?"
Kublai (/ˈkuːblaɪ/; Mongolian: Хубилай, Hubilai; Chinese: 忽必烈) was the fifth Khagan (Great Khan) of the Mongol Empire (Ikh Mongol Uls). The empire had already begun to fall to internal division after Mongke Khan died without an appointed heir in 1259. Consequently, Kublai's reign as Khagan was merely nominal. Kublai founded the Yuan dynasty in China as a conquest dynasty in 1271, and made China his main political base. Consequently, Kublai's reign as the Shizu Emperor was a period of reform and reorganization within China, and the expansion of China's hegemony in East Asia, including the annexation of what is now Korea and the vassalage of Vietnam, Burma and Java. An attempted invasion Japan was a disaster for China and the Mongols. Moreover, under Kublai, China established contacts with Europe via Marco Polo and other diplomats.
Kublai (spelled Kubilai) is the reigning Great Khan in "Curse of the Three Demons". Sa'id ibn Hawqal reflects on the fact that within the Mongol Empire, the system of paper currency is backed by Mongol ferocity as much as by the ingots in Kubilai's vault.
Jean Lafitte or Laffite (c. 1780 – February 5, 1823) was a Franco-American smuggler, slave trader, pirate and privateer in the Gulf of Mexico in the early 19th century. His criminal doings were first noted in 1805 in New Orleans, and the Federal Government made several fruitless attempts to capture him. Lafitte was pardoned in 1814 and recruited into U.S. service for the closing phase of the War of 1812, but returned to piracy soon after the war. He spent his last years operating in Spanish and Mexican territories, and was apparently killed while leading a raid off the coast of Honduras.
Robert E. Lee
In addition to his many substantial appearances in the Turtledove canon, Robert E. Lee is the subject of many incidental references as well. For example, in Curious Notions, we are introduced to Triad boss Bob Lee. Protagonist Paul Gomes wonders if the crime lord is named for Robert E. Lee, but doesn't ask. In The House of Daniel, Jack Spivey has a similar thought when he meets Mike Lee.
Sydney Smith Lee (September 2, 1802 – July 22, 1869) was a United States Navy officer and older brother to Robert E. Lee. After a respectable career in the U.S. Navy, Lee resigned his commission on the day Virginia seceded from the Union, but was ultimately dismissed. He entered the Confederate States Navy in April, 1861.
Despite his younger brother's prominent role in Turtledove's work, the sum total of Sydney Lee's role in the canon comes in The Guns of the South, when a nervous Robert, awaiting the results for the 1867 Confederate presidential election, realizes he's had too much coffee, and concludes, hyperbolically, that he is shipping more water than naval officer Sydney.
While Vladimir Lenin has played exclusively posthumous roles in Turtledove's canon, some of those roles are less important than others.
In Turtledove's contributions to Jerry Pournelle's War World Series, the New Soviet Men have a ritual in which their committee officers grind their heels in a mosaic portrait of Mikhail Gorbachev. After that, they bow to portraits on the wall depicting Lenin and Stalin.
In "The Last Word", Turtledove's contribution to S.M. Stirling's The Domination of the Draka timeline, Anson MacDonald quotes Lenin's observation that capitalists would sell him the rope he would use to hang them, pointing out in that world, the United States effectively sold rope to the Draka, and they in turn hanged the U.S.
Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck
Paul Emil von Lettow-Vorbeck (20 March 1870 – 9 March 1964) was a general in the Imperial German Army and the commander of its forces in the German East Africa campaign during World War I. For four years, with a force that never exceeded about 14,000 (3,000 Germans and 11,000 Africans), he held in check a much larger force of 300,000 British, Belgian, and Portuguese troops. Essentially undefeated in the field, Lettow-Vorbeck was the only German commander to successfully invade British Empire soil during the War. His exploits in the campaign have been described by Edwin Palmer Hoyt "as the greatest single guerrilla operation in history, and the most successful."
In The Hot War: Bombs Away, Hank McCutcheon and Bill Staley discuss the similarity between von Letto-Vorbeck's campaign and the Russians' resistance at Petropavlovsk against the British and French in the 1850s.
Marcus Annius Libo
Marcus Annius Libo (d. 162) was the uncle of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius. He was the son of Roman consul Marcus Annius Verus and Rupilia Faustina. He was consul himself in 128 and suffect consul in 161.
In addition to his prominent roles in Turtledove's works, Abraham Lincoln is frequently referenced in a number of contexts. In Joe Steele, President Joe Steele frequently quotes Abraham Lincoln early in his presidency, using Lincoln's suspension of habeas corpus during the American Civil War to justify his own suspension of it in 1934. Steele also quotes Lincoln stating "Must I shoot a simple-minded deserter, while I must not touch a hair of a wily agitator who induces him to desert?" when he refuses to grant Father Coughlin's appeal of his death sentence for treason.
On being asked on how he liked being President, Lincoln replied “I feel like the man who was tarred and feathered and ridden out of town on a rail. To the man who asked him how he liked it, he said: ‘If it wasn’t for the honor of the thing, I’d rather walk.’” This punchline has been used in a number of Turtledove works. In Supervolcano: Things Fall Apart, Police Captain Colin Ferguson uses the line when a newspaper reporter congratulates him on his recent promotion from Lieutenant.
In "Hail! Hail!", while watching Adolphus Sterne try to read a coin by firelight, Julius Marx remembers that Abraham Lincoln did much the same thing, and then realizes that Lincoln is about 17 in December 1826, but incorrectly places him in Illinois (his family was still in Indiana at that time).
In addition to his time-viewer stardom in "Before the Beginning", Charles Lindbergh's status as a celebrity flyer and Nazi apologist are referenced in several works. In Days of Infamy, pilot-in-training Joe Crosetti takes umbrage at being compared to Lindbergh, calling him a Nazi teacher's pet. In "Someone is Stealing the Great Throne Rooms of the Galaxy", when Rufus Q Shupilluliumash lands outside Paris en route to nearby Versailles, he compares himself to Lindbergh, only furrier.
In addition to his direct appearances, Huey Long's penchant for demagoguery is referenced in a number of Turtledove works. For example, in Worldwar:Striking the Balance, Leslie Groves worries after the Peace of Cairo that a demagogue might arise to convince the people of the USA to trade away their freedoms for safety and food in the wake of the Race Invasion of Tosev 3, as Huey Long had nearly done before the war.
Louis XIV of France
Louis XIV (5 September 1638 – 1 September 1715), known as Louis the Great (le Grand) or the Sun King (le Roi Soleil), was a monarch of the House of Bourbon who reigned as King of France from 1643 (taking full power in 1661) until his death in 1715. Starting at the age of 5, his reign of 72 years and 110 days is the longest recorded of any monarch of a sovereign country in European history. In the age of absolutism in Europe, Louis XIV's France was a leader in the growing centralization of power. Although his reign was marked by a glorious flourishing of art and culture, it was tarnished by an inefficient taxation system and the bloody and futile War of the Spanish Succession. An unusually long-lived man for his time, Louis outlived many of his children and grandchildren, and was succeeded by his great-grandson Louis XV.
Louis has never appeared directly in a Turtledove work, but he is occasionally used by characters as a reference point for trivial matters such as fashion and architecture. In Atlantis Series, one such casual reference confirms that Louis lived and reigned after the relevant POD.
Marinus van der Lubbe
Marinus van der Lubbe (13 January 1909 – 10 January 1934) was a Dutch communist best known for setting fire to the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany on 27 February 1933. He was one of five men arrested and charged with the fire; the other four were cleared, but van der Lubbe was convicted on the basis of, among other things, a confession extracted under torture. He was guillotined in January 1934, three days before his 25th birthday.
Historians have long been torn as to whether he was part of a larger conspiracy and, if so, with whom. It has been suggested that he was conspiring with the leadership of the German Communist Party, the primary opposition party in the Reichstag at the time. It has also been suggested that he was an unwitting pawn of the Gestapo, seeking to give the Nazi Party an excuse to curtail German civil liberties in the name of security (which is in fact what the Nazi government did in the wake of the fire). There is circumstantial evidence supporting both theories, but neither can be said to have been proven conclusively. Neither can it be said with any degree of certainty that van der Lubbe was part of any conspiracy at all.
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, upon hearing of the death of War Minister Winston Churchill, and of the British government's announcement that Churchill's death had been ruled an accident, Dr. Samuel Goldman derisively expresses his belief that it was no more likely that the death had been accidental than it was that Marinus van der Lubbe had acted unilaterally in setting fire to the Reichstag.
Martin Luther (10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was a German theologian and scholar. His opposition to certain practices and doctrine of the Catholic Church led to the Protestant Reformation in Europe. Luther held that salvation was attained only through faith in Jesus. For his various theses critical of the Church, Luther was excommunicated and branded an outlaw. Nonetheless, his teachings survived and formed the basis of the Protestant denomination of Lutheranism.
He is one of the two most prominent Reformation figures of his time period, the other being John Calvin.
A large number of characters in Harry Turtledove stories are Lutherans, and may make brief oblique or direct references to Martin Luther.
In "But It Does Move", where we are reminded that, while the Catholic Church is Galileo Galilei's immediate antagonist, in his own lifetime, Luther was a critic of the Copernican model of the solar system.
James Madison, Jr. (March 16, 1751 - June 28, 1836), a politician from Virginia, was the fourth President of the United States (1809–1817), and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. Considered to be the "Father of the Constitution", he was the principal author of the document, which was ratified in 1787. In 1788, he wrote over a third of the Federalist Papers, still the most influential commentary on the Constitution.
In 1814, during the War of 1812, he was forced to abandon the capital city of Washington, DC ahead of the advancing British Army. During his flight from the capital he fell in and briefly assumed command of a U.S. Army artillery battery. This is the only instance in American history of a sitting president giving orders to frontline combat troops directly.
Madison doesn't seem to be as reviled in the Southern Victory version of the United States as fellow Virginian Thomas Jefferson. In Settling Accounts: In at the Death, many in the USA presumed that Cassius Madison, the young man who killed Jake Featherston, had taken his surname to honor James Madison. In fact Cassius had taken the surname from the town in Georgia next to the site of his deed, and had not known there was a President Madison.
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Fernão de Magalhães (3 February 1480 – 27 April 1521), known in Spanish as Fernando de Magallanes and in English as Ferdinand Magellan (c. 1480 – 27 April 1521) was a Portuguese soldier and sailor who was commissioned by the government of Spain in the 1510s, to lead a trading expedition to the East Indies. The mission resulted in the first circumnavigation of the Earth, begun in 1519. Magellan explored the southern coast of South America, and many geographical features are named for him. The Straits of Magellan (Estrecho de Magallanes) separate Tierra del Fuego from the South American mainland. In 1521, in the islands later known as the Philippines, Magellan entered into conflict with the natives and was killed during the Battle of Mactan. The circumnavigational voyage was completed by Juan Sebastián Elcano in 1522.
Manfred of Sicily
Manfred von Hohenstaufen (1232 – 26 February 1266) was the King of Sicily from 1258 to 1266. He was an illegitimate son of Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor but his mother, Bianca Lancia (or Lanzia), is reported by Matthew Paris (a contemporary of theirs) to have been married to the emperor while on her deathbed. His reign was marked by conflicts with the papacy for control of Sicily, which saw Manfred excommunicated. While he was crowned as king in 1258, Pope Urban IV declared the coronation void, and began attempting to sell the Kingdom of Sicily to various nobles. In 1263, Count Charles of Anjou, accepted the offer. He entered Italy with an army in 1265, and invaded Sicily in 1266. Manfred met Charles at the Battle of Benevento, where Manfred was surrounded and killed.
In addition to his direct role in Household Gods, Marcus Aurelius is refered to in a number of Turtledove's works. For example, in the novel In the Presence of Mine Enemies, Susanna Weiss wonders whether Marcus Aurelius would have qualified as an Aryan under the law of the Greater German Reich. She speculates that he probably would not as, under his leadership, the Roman Empire had fought Germans along the Danube River.
Marie Antoinette (2 November 1755 – 16 October 1793), archduchess of Austria, was queen-consort of France from 1774-1792 as the wife of King Louis XVI. She, like her husband before her, was executed during the French Revolution. Though widely reviled during her reign for accusations of spendthrift habits, callous disregard for the suffering of poorer people, and adulteries with foreign diplomats, she has come to be regarded by many modern historians as a well-intentioned victim of circumstances, who had little real power.
In popular culture, the best known image of her is from portraits painted in extravagant, comical dresses which have inspired numerous fashion statements and examples of satiric humor.
In In High Places, when Annette Klein learns that the hapless Celtic slave Birigida was really a rich home timeline American named Bridget Mallory, who had paid for two weeks of slavery as a thrilling roleplay, she recalls that Marie Antoinette had had an eccentric hobby where she and her retainers "played at being milkmaids".
Mary II of England
Mary II (30 April 1662 – 28 December 1694) was joint Sovereign of England, Scotland, and Ireland with her husband and first cousin, William III and II, from 1689 until her death. William and Mary, both Protestants, became king and queen regnant, respectively, following the Glorious Revolution, which resulted in the deposition of her Roman Catholic father, James II and VII. William became sole ruler upon her death in 1694. Popular histories usually refer to their joint reign as that of "William and Mary". Mary wielded less power than William when he was in England, ceding most of her authority to him, though he heavily relied on her. She did, however, act alone when William was engaged in military campaigns abroad, proving herself to be a powerful, firm, and effective ruler.
In The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, the 1941 British Military Coup that removes the increasingly authoritarian Prime Minister Sir Horace Wilson is the first time such an event has happened in English history since the ascension of William and Mary.
Megacles, son of Alcmaeon was an Athenian politician of the 6th century BC. He drove out Peisistratos during the latter's first reign as tyrant in 560 BC, but the two then made an alliance with each other, and Peisistratos married Megacles' daughter. However, Megacles turned against Peisistratos when the latter refused to have children with her, which brought an end to the second tyranny. Megacles was the great-grandfather of Pericles and Alcibiades.
In "Goddess for a Day", a messenger brings Peisistratos (who is beginning his second tyranny) the news that Megakles has offered his daughter in marriage.
Minamoto no Tomonaga
Minamoto no Tomonaga (源 朝長) (1144–1160) was a Minamoto clan samurai of the late Heian period of Japan. His father was Minamoto no Yoshitomo. Tomonaga joined his father and brothers, Yoshitsune and Yoritomo in the Heiji Rebellion, and fled with them after the rebellion failed. Tomonaga was wounded, and ultimately asked his father to kill him so he wouldn't be captured. His father obliged.
In the short story "Character", self-aware fictional character Steve notes that the names of the men of the Minamoto clan sound alike if to non-Japanese speakers. He cites Tomonaga's name as an example.
Minamoto no Noriyori
Minamoto no Noriyori (源 範頼, 1150 - September 14, 1193) was a general of the late Heian period of Japan. A member of the Minamoto clan, Noriyori fought alongside his brothers Minamoto no Yoritomo and Minamoto no Yoshitsune at a number of battles of the Genpei War. When the Minamoto clan won the war, Yoritomo made himself head of the clan, defeating the aspirations of Yoshitsune. Noriyori did not prove sufficiently loyal to ease Yoritomo's suspicions. In 1193, Yoritomo had Noriyori confined and ultimately killed.
In the short story "Character", self-aware fictional character Steve notes that the names of the men of the Minamoto clan sound alike if to non-Japanese speakers. He cites Noriyori's name as an example.
Helmuth von Moltke
Field Marshall Helmuth Karl Bernhard Graf von Moltke (26 October 1800 – 24 April 1891), commonly referred to as Von Moltke the Elder, was a Prussian general who lead Prussia's armies to victory against Denmark, Austria, and France in the mid-19th century. His victories gave Otto von Bismarck the diplomatic standing to preside over the unification of Germany.
James Monroe (April 28, 1758 – July 4, 1831) was the fifth President of the United States (1817–1825). His administration was marked by the acquisition of Florida (1819); the Missouri Compromise (1820) by which Missouri was admitted as a slave state and Maine was admitted as a free state; and the profession of the Monroe Doctrine (1823, written mainly by Secretary of State John Quincy Adams), declaring U.S. opposition to European interference in the Americas, as well as breaking all ties with France remaining from the War of 1812. Before his election as president, Monroe served as Ambassador to France under President George Washington, twice as governor of Virginia, and as Secretary of War and later Secretary of State under President James Madison.
Monroe is, along with Washington, one of only two American Presidents to have been elected to the office without serious opposition, as no party put up an opposing candidate against his reelection in 1820. Along with John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, he is one of three US Presidents to die on the Fourth of July.
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John Quincy Adams
John Singleton Mosby (December 6, 1833 – May 30, 1916), also known by his nickname, the Gray Ghost, was a Confederate States Army cavalry battalion commander in the American Civil War. His command, the 43rd Battalion, 1st Virginia Cavalry, known as Mosby's Rangers or Mosby's Raiders, was a partisan ranger unit noted for its lightning quick raids and its ability to elude Union Army pursuers and disappear, blending in with local farmers and townsmen. The area of northern central Virginia in which Mosby operated with impunity was known during the war and ever since as Mosby's Confederacy. After the war, Mosby became a Republican and worked as an attorney and supported his former enemy's commander, U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant, serving as the American consul to Hong Kong and in the U.S. Department of Justice.
In The Guns of the South, U.S. peace commissioner Benjamin Butler points out that the post-Second American Revolution Confederate Negro uprisings in Mississippi and neighboring states were similar to the Union problems with Mosby's Confederacy during the war, and he calls it a "N***** Union."
In "Islands in the Sea", Muhammad's place in theological hierarchy is a bone of contention between the Christian and Islamic delegations presenting each religion's case to Khan Telerikh of the Buglars.
In Through Darkest Europe, Muhammad is mentioned frequently by characters discussing various points of theology and history. For example, Khalid al-Zarzisi takes a special interest in Roman landmarks put up concurrently with the Prophet's lifetime. There is a popular saying that if any man after Muhammad could claim prophet status, it would be Al-Ghazali.
In addition to his more prominent roles in Turtledove's work, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini is referenced posthumously in several works. The most commonly referenced theme is the campaign promise to make the trains run on time, which the Duce was ultimately unable to keep.
In Supervolcano: All Fall Down, while Louise Ferguson is waiting for a very late bus, she reflects that if a modern day Mussolini promised to make the buses run on time, he would be elected in a landslide. And then he would break his promise like his predecessor since there wasn't the money to pay for it.
In The Hot War: Bombs Away, with World War III going badly, Harry Truman hits on the idea of using atomic bombs against various Soviet satellite countries in the hopes of provoking popular uprisings against various communist leaders akin to the uprising against Mussolini.
In The House of Daniel, Jack Spivey attributes the train promise to "some king, or maybe he was just a minister, way on the other side of the ocean." Given the fantasy nature of this novel, this character is probably an analog rather than Mussolini himself.
Part of "Hail! Hail!" is set in OTL in 1934. While the Marx Brothers are waiting for a late train, Zeppo proudly reminds the others that Mussolini has banned their new picture Duck Soup in Italy. Chico retorts that it cost Paramount Studios money, and contributed to the studio's decision not to renew their contract.
In addition to posthumous role in The Two Georges, Napoleon Bonaparte and his tremendous impact on history are frequently referenced throughout Turtledove's work.
The War That Came Early: The Big Switch uses Napoleon as something like a central metaphor. Aristide Demange calls Napoleon the Hitler of his day, as his troops followed him blindly on campaigns of conquest, ultimately to their own ruination. Meanwhile in Russia, which France had invaded under Napoleon's direction and is preparing to attack again in 1940, Red Air Force pilot Sergei Yaroslavsky gleefully remembers that, while Napoleon had taken Moscow, it was a pyrrhic victory, and Napoleon was unable to extract most of his army safely from Russia. Yaroslavsky is confident that Germany and its new allies will never make it that far. Finally, Joseph Stalin broadcasts a radio speech to the Soviet people, promising that the invaders will be driven out just as Napoleon was.
Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson, 1st Duke of Bronté, Knight of the Bath (29 September 1758 – 21 October 1805) was a British flag officer in the Royal Navy. He was noted for his inspirational leadership, superb grasp of strategy, and unconventional tactics, all of which resulted in a number of decisive naval victories, particularly during the Napoleonic Wars against the France of Napoleon Bonaparte. He was wounded several times in combat, losing one arm in the unsuccessful attempt to conquer Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the sight in one eye in Corsica. His two greatest victories were the Battle of the Nile in Egypt in 1798 and the Battle of Trafalgar off of Spain in 1805. During the latter, he was mortally wounded during his moment of triumph by a French sharpshooter. The large monumental park of Trafalgar Square in London, which includes Nelson's Column, is dedicated to him.
In Joe Steele, the one-eyed Captain Blair tells Mike Sullivan that he had been deemed unfit for combat due to his injury. He notes that Admiral Nelson had continued his career after losing both an eye and an arm, but things have changed.
Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus (15 December 37 – 9 June 68) was the fifth and last Roman Emperor of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Nero was adopted by his grand-uncle Claudius to become heir to the throne. As Nero Claudius Caesar Drusus, he succeeded to the throne on 13 October 54 AD, following Claudius' death.
Nero ruled from 54 to 68, focusing much of his attention on diplomacy, trade, and increasing the cultural capital of the empire. He ordered the building of theatres and promoted athletic games. His reign included a successful war and negotiated peace with the Parthian Empire (58–63), the suppression of the Iceni Revolt (60–61) and improving diplomatic ties with Greece. In 68 a military coup drove Nero into hiding. Facing execution at the hands of the Roman Senate, he reportedly committed honorable suicide with the help of his scribe Epaphroditos.
In "Death in Vesunna", the stories of Nero's depravity are so well entrenched that Kleandros uses Nero as an example of why the gods would not have killed the inoffensive Clodius Eprius since they left a man as evil as Nero alone.
Francesco Niccolini (1584-1650) was Tuscany's ambassador to Rome from 1621 to 1643. He met Galileo while the latter was on his mission to Rome in 1624, and the two formed a close friendship. Niccolini helped Galileo with the publication of the Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems.
During Galileo's investigation of heresy by the Roman Inquisition, Niccolini allowed his friend to live with him on his estate. In the period following Galileo’s condemnation, Niccolini did all he could to get him pardoned. Though failing in that aim, he did succeed in getting permission for him to reside in Florence.
In "But It Does Move," a fictionalized Galileo remembers Niccolini's hospitality.
Quintus Ninnius Hasta
In Gunpowder Empire, a fountain in Polisso bears a plaque thanking Ninnius for sponsoring its construction, two millennia earlier. Amanda Solters wonders if anyone in Polisso knows anything else about Ninnius, or if anyone outside the city has heard of him at all.
Robert Georges Nivelle (15 October 1856 – 22 March 1924) was a French artillery officer who served in the Boxer Rebellion and the First World War. Nivelle was a very capable commander and organizer of field artillery at the regimental and divisional levels. In May 1916, he succeeded Philippe Pétain as commander of the French Second Army in the Battle of Verdun, leading counter-offensives that rolled back the German forces in late 1916. He is often credited with coining the famous slogan "Ils ne passeront pas", usually translated as "They shall not pass," during Verdun, although he may have taken it from an obscure older source. Although many accused him of wasting French lives, Nivelle was promoted to commander-in-chief of the French Army in December 1916. His fortune was reversed by the Nivelle Offensive at the Chemin des Dames, which failed to achieve a breakthrough, and led to the French Army Mutinies. Nivelle was replaced as commander-in-chief by Pétain in May 1917.
Turtledove's "Ils ne passeront pas," in which the Verdun battle sees an intervention by supernatural forces, takes its title from Nivelle's alleged declaration. The same slogan is referenced by Jeff Mendoza, who is reminded of it when Chairman Cal's summons the Westsiders to war in 2097: "They won't come past us." Mendoza doubts that Cal even knows that the statement is nearly two centuries old..
In addition to his direct roles in Turtledove's work, a poster of Richard Nixon is referenced in "The Weather's Fine". The poster hung on the wall of Barefoot Sounds and Nixon appeared to be so stoned that his face was dribbling out between his fingers.
Alfred Bernhard Nobel (21 October 1833 – 10 December 1896) was a Swedish chemist, engineer, innovator, and armaments manufacturer.
Known for inventing dynamite, Nobel also owned Bofors, which he had redirected from its previous role as primarily an iron and steel producer to a major manufacturer of cannon and other armaments. Nobel held 355 different patents, dynamite being the most famous. After reading a premature obituary which condemned him for profiting from the sales of arms, he bequeathed his fortune to institute the Nobel Prizes. The synthetic element nobelium was named after him. His name also survives in modern-day companies such as Dynamit Nobel and AkzoNobel, which are descendants of mergers with companies Nobel himself established.
Beatrice Banning Ayer (January 12, 1886 - September 30, 1953), wife of General George Patton, was a translator, lecturer, and writer.
Friedrich Wilhelm Ernst Paulus (23 September 1890 – 1 February 1957) was an officer in the German military from 1910 to 1945. He attained the rank of Field Marshal during World War II, and is best known for commanding the Sixth Army in the Battle of Stalingrad (August 1942 to February 1943), including the successful advance toward Stalingrad and the less successful attack in 1942 (part of Case Blue, June to November 1942) stopped by the Soviet counter-offensives during the 1942–1943 winter. The battle ended in disaster for Nazi Germany when Soviet forces encircled and defeated about 265,000 personnel of the Wehrmacht, their Axis allies, and the anti-Soviet volunteers. Of the 107,000 Axis servicemen captured, only 6,000 survived captivity and returned home by 1955.
Soviet troops took Paulus by surprise and captured him in Stalingrad on 31 January 1943, the same day on which he was informed of his promotion to Field Marshal by Adolf Hitler.
Hitler expected Paulus to commit suicide, citing the fact that there was no record of a German field marshal ever being captured alive. Paulus' Catholic faith forbid him to do this. While in Soviet captivity during the war, Paulus became a vocal critic of the Nazi regime and joined the Soviet-sponsored National Committee for a Free Germany. He moved to the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) in 1953.
In Days of Infamy Series: End of the Beginning: after the Empire of Japan has conquered the American territory of Hawaii, Joe Crosetti muses that Matthew Perry had much to answer for by opening Japan up.
In The Guns of the South, when Nate Caudell says that the Confederacy just wants to be left alone and reject social progress, Henry Pleasants tells him "You can't keep walls up forever - look at Admiral Perry's trip to Japan." 
Oliver Hazard Perry
Oliver Hazard Perry (August 23, 1785 – August 23, 1819) was an officer in the United States Navy. He served in the War of 1812 against Britain and earned the nickname "Hero of Lake Erie" for leading American forces in a decisive naval victory at the Battle of Lake Erie.
In Days of Infamy Series: End of the Beginning, Joe Crosetti and Orson Sharp contemplate the statue of Oliver Hazard Perry standing at the Naval Training Station outside Buffalo, New York. Sharp remembers that Perry's brother sailed to Japan in a successful effort to bring it out of isolation, not such a good idea in retrospect. By contrast, Oliver Perry was noted for fighting against the British, who are now allies.
Clara "Claretta" Petacci (28 February 1912 – 28 April 1945) was the mistress of the Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, and was executed with him by partisans. Mussolini was 28 years older than Petacci. They maintained a long-standing relationship, although she was by no means his only mistress or paramour.
In The Hot War: Bombs Away, President Harry Truman remembers the final fate of Clara Petacci, Benito Mussolini, and Achille Starace when he decides to use atomic bombs in East Germany and in the Soviet Union's satellites. He hopes that the attacks might prompt the governments of the various satellites to reconsider their alliance with Russia, or to prompt the citizens of those states to rebel against their pro-Soviet governments.
Peter I of Russia
Pyotr Alexeyevich Romanov, also known as Peter the Great (9 June 1672 – 8 February 1725) ruled Russia and later the Russian Empire from 7 May 1682 until his death, jointly ruling before 1696 with his weak and sickly half-brother, Ivan V.
He carried out a policy of modernization and expansion that transformed the Tsardom of Russia into a 3-billion acre Russian Empire, a major European power.
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, after the "big switch" in 1940 turns the Soviet Union's former allies into enemies, Joseph Stalin gives a radio speech that harkens back to Peter the Great's victory over the Swedes to help inspire the Soviet people to keep fighting until victory.
James Johnston Pettigrew
James Johnston Pettigrew (July 4, 1828 – July 17, 1863) was an author, lawyer, linguist, diplomat, and a Confederate general in the American Civil War. He was one of three division commanders in the disastrous assault known as Pickett's Charge in the Battle of Gettysburg. He was mortally wounded a few days later, during the Confederate retreat to Virginia.
In "The Last Reunion", the final surviving Gettysburg veterans discuss why the charge is named after George Pickett and not Pettigrew. One man suppose it's because Pickett's men reached the top of the hill and Pettigrew's didn't. John Houston Thorpe replies that Pickett's men only got to the top because Pettigrew's men (which included him) bodily shielded them most of the way.
Pauline Marie Pfeiffer (July 22, 1895 – October 1, 1951) was an American journalist, and the second wife of the writer Ernest Hemingway. She first had an affair with Hemingway in Paris in 1926, when he was married to Hadley Richardson. After Hemingway's 1927 divorce, he married Pfeiffer. They had two sons, Patrick and Gregory. When the Spanish Civil War began, Pfeiffer's Catholicism caused her to support the Nationalists, while Hemingway supported the Republicans. By 1937, Hemingway was having an affair with Martha Gellhorn, whom he married in 1940 after his second divorce. Pfeiffer died suddenly in 1951 from an apparent brain tumor.
In "Cayos in the Stream", a fictionalized Hemingway narrates the story in second-person. In the opening paragraphs, he reflects on his break with Pauline and his joining with Martha.
In addition to his more significant references in Turtledove's work, the Byzantine Emperor Phokas or Phocas is of interest to Khalid al-Zarzisi in Through Darkest Europe. When Khalid visits Phocas' Column in Rome, he marvels that it was erected when the great Muhammad still lived.
George Edward Pickett (January 16, 1825 – July 30, 1875) was a career United States Army officer, and veteran of the Mexican-American War, who became a major general in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. He is best remembered for leading the futile and bloody Confederate offensive on the third day (July 3, 1863) of the Battle of Gettysburg that bears his name, Pickett's Charge. Legend says that after the war he remained bitter and dwelt extensively upon the loss of his men at Gettysburg.
In "The Last Reunion", the final surviving Gettysburg veterans discuss why the charge is named after Pickett and not his fellow commander James Johnston Pettigrew. One man supposes that it's because Pickett's men reached the top of the hill and Pettigrew's didn't. John Houston Thorpe replies that Pickett's men only got to the top because Pettigrew's men (which included him) bodily shielded them most of the way.
Gideon Johnson Pillow (June 8, 1806 – October 8, 1878) was an American lawyer, politician, and soldier. His partner in his first law practice was future President James K. Polk. He served during the Mexican-American War. He joined the Confederate States Army shortly after the American Civil War began. He is best remembered for his poor performance at the Battle of Fort Donelson, although the whole of Pillow's career was defined by his substantial ego and lack of military skill.
In addition to his actions being a posthumous casus belli for a very different World War II in The War That Came Early, Marshal Jozef Pilsudski is one of many deceased figures regarded with contempt by Worldwar's version of Vyacheslav Molotov, who incorrectly labels Pilsudski "fascist".
Henri Pirenne (23 December 1862 – 25 October 1935) was a Belgian historian. A medievalist of Walloon descent, he wrote a multivolume history of Belgium and became a national hero. He also became prominent in the nonviolent resistance to the Germans who occupied Belgium in World War I.
Henri Pirenne's reputation today rests on three contributions to European history: for what has become known as the Pirenne Thesis, concerning origins of the Middle Ages in reactive state formation and shifts in trade; for a distinctive view of Belgium's medieval history; and for his model of the development of the medieval city.
Pirenne argued that profound social, economic, cultural, and religious movements in the long term resulted from equally profound underlying causes, and this attitude influenced Marc Bloch and the outlook of the French Annales School of social history. Though Pirenne had his opponents, notably Alfons Dopsch who disagreed on essential points, several recent historians of the Middle Ages have taken Pirenne's main theses, however much they are modified, as starting points.
Sarah Newell "Sallie" Bannan Pleasants (1837 - October 15, 1860) was the daughter of Philadelphia newspaper publisher Benjamin Bannan, and the wife of mining engineer Henry Pleasants. She took ill and died after less than a year of marriage. The American Civil War began the following year. Romantic tradition holds that the grief-stricken Pleasants desired to join her in death, and enlisted in the United States Army with the hope of being killed in combat.
In The Guns of the South, the fictionalized Pleasants, having settled in the Confederate States after that nation wins the Second American Revolution, has a heartfelt conversation with Nate Caudell about Sallie's memory. He credits Sallie's strong belief in abolitionism as part of his aversion to owning slaves.
James K. Polk
James Knox Polk (November 2, 1795 - June 15, 1849) served as the 11th President of the United States, March 4, 1845-March 4, 1849. He was responsible for the second-largest expansion of the nation's territory. Polk secured the Oregon Territory (which would later become Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and parts of Montana and Wyoming), then purchased most of what became the Southwest United States through the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo that ended the Mexican-American War.
Prior to his Presidency, Polk had served as Governor of Tennessee and, before that, as Speaker of the House of Representatives. He is the only alumnus of either office ever to be elected President, although Andrew Johnson was governor of Tennessee before being elected Vice President and then succeeding to the presidency.
|President of the United States
In addition to Leonidas Polk's minor role in The Guns of the South, he is also referenced in Fort Pillow. Specifically, Nathan Bedford Forrest's letter to Polk promising that Forrest would take Fort Pillow in 1864 is mentioned.
Marco Polo (1254 – January 1324) was a Venetian merchant, explorer, and writer. His memoir Livre des merveilles du monde (Book of the Marvels of the World, also known as The Travels of Marco Polo, c. 1300) described to Europeans the wealth and great size of China, its capital Peking, and other Asian cities and countries. In 1271, Polo departed with his father and uncle to China, and did not return to Venice until 1295. He died in 1324 and was buried in the church of San Lorenzo in Venice. There is a substantial literature based on Polo's writings; he also influenced European cartography, leading to the introduction of the Fra Mauro map.
In Liberating Atlantis, Consul Leland Newton reads passages from Polo's memoir, describing Chinese ingenuity and inventiveness, to the Atlantean Senate, to demonstrate the capability of non-white people to build superior civilizations.
Pontiac (Obwandiyag) (c. 1720 – April 20, 1769), was an Odawa (also Ottawa or Odaawaa) war chief who became noted for his role in Pontiac's War (1763–1766), a Native Americans struggle against British military occupation of the Great Lakes region. It followed the British victory in the Seven Years' War. Pontiac's importance in the war that bears his name has been debated. 19th-century accounts portrayed him as the mastermind and leader of the revolt, but some subsequent scholars argued that his role had been exaggerated. Historians today generally view him as an important local leader who influenced a wider movement that he did not command.
In July 1766, Pontiac made peace with the British. The attention that the British paid to Pontiac resulted in resentment among other Native leaders, as the war effort was decentralized and Pontiac claimed greater authority than he possessed. Increasingly ostracized, in 1769 he was assassinated by a Peoria warrior.
Gavrilo Princip (25 July 1894 - 28 April 1918) was an ethnic Serb and a Yugoslav nationalist. On 28 June 1914, he assassinated both Austro-Hungarian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie in Sarajevo. This act began a political chain reaction that sparked World War I. As World War II arose directly from World War I, Princip is arguably one of the most important people of the 20th century.
Princip died of tuberculosis in April 1918, and so did not live to see the outcome of the war. He was lionized in communist Yugoslavia, but has fallen somewhat out of favor as a consequence of Yugoslavia's post-communist civil wars.
Gavrilo Princip's actions are echoed in The War That Came Early: Hitler's War, with Czechoslovak nationalist Jaroslav Stribny assassinating Sudeten German leader Konrad Henlein in 1938, thereby touching off the Second World War.
Ptolemy III of Egypt
Ptolemy III (284-222 BCE), known as "Euergetes" (Benefactor), was the third ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty of Egypt. He reigned from 246-222 BCE.
Under Ptolemy's reign, the Ptolemaic dynasty reached the height of its power after defeating the Seleucids (the Greek dynasty ruling Syria) during the Third Syrian War. Ptolemy III was also the first known monarch to issue decrees as bilingual inscriptions on massive stone blocks.
It is believed that he had six children, including his eldest son, who succeeded him as Ptolemy IV.
In "Two Thieves", Turtledove's contribution to Philip José Farmer's Riverworld, we learn that Egyptian peasants that had lived and died during the reign of Ptolemy III became subjects of Alexios Komnenos and resided in New Constantinople. Upon converting to Christianity, they proved very loyal subjects.
Kazimierz Michał Władysław Wiktor Pułaski, known in English as Casimir Pulaski (6 March 1745 – 11 October 1779) was a Polish nobleman, soldier and military commander who has been called one of "the fathers of the American cavalry".
Born in Warsaw and following in his father's footsteps, he became interested in politics at an early age and soon became involved in the military and the revolutionary affairs in Poland. Pulaski was one of the leading military commanders for the Bar Confederation and fought against the First Partition of Poland. When this uprising failed, he was driven into exile in France. Following a recommendation by Benjamin Franklin, Pulaski emigrated to North America to join the American Revolution. He distinguished himself throughout the revolution, most notably when he saved the life of George Washington. Pulaski became a general in the Continental Army, created the Pulaski Cavalry Legion and reformed the American cavalry as a whole. At Savannah, Georgia, while leading a charge against British forces, he was mortally wounded. Pulaski was posthumously granted American citizenship.
In Worldwar: Striking the Balance, Ludmila Gorbunova learns of Casimir Pulaski, and is confused as to why a reactionary holdover of a corrupt regime would help a progressive revolution, challenging her worldview.
Pyrrhus of Epirus
Pyrrhus of Epirus (319 or 318 BC - 272 BC) was a Greek general and statesman of the Hellenistic era. He was king of the Greek tribe of Molossians, of the royal Aeacid house, and later he became king of Epirus and Macedon. He was one of the strongest opponents of early Rome. Some of his battles, though successful, cost him heavy losses, causing him to cry out "One more such victory and we are ruined!" From this reference, the term "Pyrrhic victory" was coined.
Pyrrhus' reaction to his costly victory is referenced in numerous Harry Turtledove works. For example, in The Great War: Walk in Hell, it weighs heavily on Abner Dowling's mind. Further, during the Second Great War, Tom Colleton also recalls Pyrrhus' cry after his regiment takes heavy losses capturing the grounds of a Sandusky crayon factory.
Richard I of England
King Richard I of England, aka "Richard the Lion-Hearted," (8 September 1157 - 6 April 1199) was a 12th-century King of England who led Christian armies to Jerusalem in the Third Crusade, was briefly deposed by his brother Prince John and King Philip II of France, defeated the usurpers and reclaimed his crown, and was killed in battle against the French in 1199 when an arrow wound became infected. He spent less than one year of his ten-year reign in England proper.
In Worldwar: Upsetting the Balance, when he learns that the Race had fully expected to encounter 12th-century military technology in their 20th-century invasion of Earth, Sam Yeager imagines the Lizards battling King Arthur and Richard the Lion-Hearted (those being the only two medieval figures he can recall).
Richard III of England
Richard III (2 October 1452 – 22 August 1485) was King of England from 1483 until his death. He was the last king from the House of York, and his defeat at the Battle of Bosworth marked the culmination of the War of the Roses and the end of the Plantagenet dynasty.
Richard has been the subject of vilification in history and popular culture, due in no small part to William Shakespeare's play about Richard. This was no doubt influenced by previous inaccurate histories of Richard, as well as the fact that the play was written in the time of Elizabeth I, granddaughter of Richard's nemesis, Henry VII, the first Tudor king.
John of Brittany, Earl of Richmond
John of Brittany (Jean de Bretagne), 4th Earl of Richmond (c. 1266 – 17 January 1334), was an English nobleman and a member of the Ducal house of Brittany, the House of Dreux. He entered royal service in England under his uncle King Edward I, and also served Edward II. On 15 October 1306 he received his father's title of Earl of Richmond. He was named Guardian of Scotland in the midst of England's conflicts with Scotland, and in 1311 Lord Ordainer during the baronial rebellion against Edward II.
John of Brittany served England as a soldier and as a diplomat but was otherwise politically inactive in comparison to other Earls of his time. He was a capable diplomat, valued for his negotiating skills. John was never married, and upon his death his title and estates fell to his nephew, Duke John III of Brittany. Although he was generally loyal to his first cousin Edward II during the times of baronial rebellion, he eventually supported the coup of Isabella and Mortimer. After Edward II abdicated in favour of his son Edward III, John retired to his estates in France and died in his native Brittany in 1334 with no known issue.
In "Clash of Arms", during their contest to identify heraldic symbols, Stephen de Windesore asks Niccolo dello Bosco to name the one English coat of arms that had no charge upon the shield. Bosco correctly names John of Brittany, the Earl of Richmond, whose coat bore simply "ermine."
Manfred von Richthofen
Manfred Albrecht Freiherr von Richthofen (2 May 1892 – 21 April 1918), widely known as the Red Baron, was a German fighter pilot with the Imperial German Army Air Service during the First World War. He is considered the ace-of-aces of the war, being officially credited with 80 air combat victories.
Halsted Lockwood Ritter (July 14, 1868–October 15, 1951) was an American lawyer and judge. He served in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida from 1929, but was impeached and removed from office in 1936, on charges of income tax evasion and other financial irregularities, only the fourth official to be removed.
Ernst Julius Röhm (28 November 1887 – 1 July 1934) was an Imperial German Army officer and later a Nazi leader. He was a co-founder of the Sturmabteilung ("Storm Battalion"; SA), the Nazi Party militia, eventually emerging as the SA's commander. In 1934, he was a executed on Adolf Hitler's order as part of the Night of the Long Knives. Hitler had come to see Röhm as a potential rival, and ordered his arrest. Röhm was given the opportunity to commit suicide, but instead demanded to be shot by his captors.
In The Man With the Iron Heart, Brigadier General Rudyard Holmyard compares the German Freedom Front's terror campaign to the Philippines insurrections during Roosevelt's presidency. Jerry Duncan reflects that it would have been perfectly consistent with Roosevelt's nature to use the atom bomb on the rebels, had such a weapon existed in the early 1900s.
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, two important events in Roosevelt's career are referenced. As Theodore Roosevelt mediated the end of the Russo-Japanese War in 1905, in 1940 his younger cousin Franklin attempts to do the same during the Second Russo-Japanese War, but is rebuffed - while the Russians are willing, the Japanese are distrustful of American motives. In a later chapter, Alf Landon's defection from the Republican Party to an independent ticket in the 1940 Presidential run, is compared by Senator Joseph Guffey (D-Pennsylvania) to Theodore Roosevelt's Bull Moose gambit of 1912. The difference being that Landon is a bull..., and Guffey leaves it up to his audience's imagination to fill in the last part.
In addition to his significant references in The Hot War, Marshal Konstantin Rokossovsky is referenced in Colonization: Second Contact, when Vyacheslav Molotov thinks about him among several gulag-to-riches success stories.
Donald Henry Rumsfeld (1932-2021) was a United States businessman, politician, the 13th Secretary of Defense under President Gerald Ford from 1975 to 1977, and the 21st Secretary of Defense under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2006. He was both the youngest (43 years old) and the oldest (74 years old) person to have held the position, as well as the only person to have held the position for two non-consecutive terms, and the second longest serving, behind Robert McNamara. Rumsfeld was White House Chief of Staff during part of the Ford Administration, and also served in various positions in the Nixon Administration. Rumsfeld served four terms in the United States House of Representatives, and served as United States Ambassador to NATO. Rumsfeld was an aviator in the United States Navy between 1954 and 1957 before transferring to the Reserve. In public life, he has also served as an official in numerous federal commissions and councils. He died on June 29, 2021 of multiple myeloma.
David Dean Rusk (February 9, 1909 – December 20, 1994) was an American lawyer and diplomat. He served as an Assistant Secretary of State under President Harry Truman, and as the Secretary of State from 1961 to 1969 under Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson. Rusk is tied with William Seward as the second-longest serving Secretary of State in the country's history (Cordell Hull is the longest serving).
Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna
Antonio de Padua Maria Severino Lopez de Santa Anna y Perez de Lebron (24 February 1791 - 21 June 1876) was a Mexican political and military leader in the early 19th century. From 1833 to 1855, he served as President on eleven separate occasions. In 1855 his final administration ended in a coup d'etat and he fled the country, going into exile for the second time of his career. He was tried and convicted of treason in absentia but returned to Mexico in 1874 following a general amnesty to live out the remainder of his life in quiet retirement.
Throughout his career, Santa Anna had a mixed relationship with the United States, brutally attempting to suppress the Texas Revolution of 1836, in which many Americans took part, and commanding Mexican armies in the field during the Mexican-American War in 1846-48. However, at other times he cultivated good relations with the US, spent parts of both his exiles in US territory, and on at least one occasion seized power in Mexico City with American support.
In "Lee at the Alamo", Robert E. Lee, remembering Santa Anna's actions in 1836, hopes that Ben McCulloch, unlike Santa Anna, will not massacre the garrison once the fortress falls, and indeed he does not.
José Antonio Saucedo
José Antonio Saucedo (?-?) was a Mexican politician. He served as the "political chief" at Bexar, and thus was responsible for overseeing the American colonists residing in Texas throughout the 1820s. He played a role in suppressing the Fredonian Rebellion. Little else about his life appears to be readily available in English.
In "Hail! Hail!", when Adolphus Sterne discovers the Marx brothers know about the coming rebellion, he worries that Political Chief Saucedo also knows about it. Julius Marx thinks the title of "political chief" is funny. However, Saucedo never appears within the story.
Eugene Schieffelin (January 29, 1827 - August 15, 1906) was an American ornithologist. In 1890, he released 60 European starlings into New York City’s Central Park. He did the same with another 40 birds in 1891. His stated intent was to introduce all the birds mentioned in the plays of William Shakespeare to North America. He may have also been trying to control the same pests that had been annoying him thirty years earlier, when he sponsored the introduction of the house sparrow to North America. His attempts to introduce bullfinches, chaffinches, nightingales, and skylarks were not successful.
Schieffelin belonged to the American Acclimatization Society, a group that aimed to help exchange plants and animals from one part of the world to another. In the 19th century, such acclimatization societies were fashionable and supported by the scientific knowledge and beliefs of that era, as the effect that non-native species could have on the local ecosystem was not yet known. European starlings are now considered an invasive species in the United States.
In Gunpowder Empire, Amanda Solters observes starlings and house sparrows in Polisso where they are native, and recalls Schieffelin (whom she incorrectly remembers as "a mad Englishman") and his introduction of these species to North America, as well as his unsuccessful attempt with nightingales. She considers it a bad bargain.
Anna von Schlieffen
Anna von Schlieffen (1 October 1840 - 13 July 1872) was the wife of legendary German military leader Alfred von Schlieffen. She was his cousin, and von Schlieffen was her original surname as well. She and Alfred were married in 1868, and had two daughters. She died shortly after her second childbirth. After her death, her husband devoted himself completely to his military activities, and seemed to lose interest in everything else.
In How Few Remain, we learn that Alfred von Schlieffen keeps pictures of Helmuth von Moltke, Kaiser Wilhelm I, Otto von Bismarck, and his own late wife Anna (the one bit of sentiment he permits himself).
Friedrich Werner von der Schulenberg
Friedrich-Werner Graf von der Schulenburg (20 November 1875 – 10 November 1944) was an early Nazi supporter and German diplomat who served as the last German ambassador to the Soviet Union before Operation: Barbarossa. He began his diplomatic career before World War I, serving as consul and ambassador in several countries. He turned against the main Nazi Party and joined the conspiracy against Hitler. After the failed 20 July plot in 1944, Schulenburg was accused of being a co-conspirator and subsequently executed.
He was a Knight of Justice of the Order of St John, which was regarded with disfavor by the Nazis.
In Colonization: Down to Earth, Soviet leader Vyacheslav Molotov recounts to German ambassador Paul Schmidt how, on 22 June 1941, when Count Schulenberg formally announced the invasion of Russia, Molotov asked Schulenberg "Do you believe that we deserved this?" and that Schulenberg had no reply.
Albert Schweitzer, OM (14 January 1875 – 4 September 1965) was a German and then French theologian, organist, philosopher, physician, and medical missionary. He was born in Kaysersberg in the province of Alsace-Lorraine, at that time part of the German Empire. Schweitzer, a Lutheran, challenged both the secular view of Jesus as depicted by historical-critical methodology current at his time in certain academic circles, as well as the traditional Christian view. He depicted Jesus as one who literally believed the end of the world was coming in his own lifetime and believed himself to be a world savior. He received the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize for his philosophy of "Reverence for Life", expressed in many ways, but most famously in founding and sustaining the Albert Schweitzer Hospital in Lambaréné, now in Gabon, west central Africa. As a music scholar and organist, he studied the music of German composer Johann Sebastian Bach and influenced the Organ reform movement (Orgelbewegung).
Schweitzer's passionate quest was to discover a universal ethical philosophy, anchored in a universal reality, and make it directly available to all of humanity.
In "Hindsight", when Pete Lundquist and Jim McGregor contemplate the mystery of Mark Gordian, both men consider the possibility that Gordian might be a telepath, prompting McGregor to wonder why Gordian would read Lundquist's mind instead of Albert Schweitzer's, among other more influential people.
Robert Falcon Scott
Captain Robert Falcon Scott CVO RN (6 June 1868 – 29 or 30 March 1912) was a British Royal Navy officer and explorer who led two expeditions to the Antarctic regions: the Discovery Expedition, 1901–1904, and the ill-fated Terra Nova Expedition, 1910–1913. On the first expedition, he set a new southern record by marching to latitude 82°S and discovered the Polar Plateau, on which the South Pole is located. During the second venture, Scott led a party of five which reached the South Pole on 17 January 1912, only to find that they had been preceded by Roald Amundsen's Norwegian expedition. On their return journey, Scott's party discovered plant fossils, proving Antarctica was once forested and joined to other continents. A planned meeting with supporting dog teams from the base camp failed, and at a distance of 150 miles from their base camp and 11 miles from the next depot, Scott and his companions died from a combination of exhaustion, starvation and extreme cold.
In The War That Came Early: West and East, an unnamed English captain trudging through a blizzard in Norway concludes that the last person who was in anything like that predicament was Robert Falcon Scott. He then amends this, remembering that Roald Amundsen was exploring Antarctica at the same time as Scott, and surmises that Amundsen, being Norwegian, survived because he was used to such weather.
Septimus Severus (11 April 145 – 4 February 211) was Roman Emperor during the turn of the second century. He seized power in a coup in 193, the so-called Year of the Five Emperors. Five Romans seized the throne in coups, but it was Septimus Severus who was able to hold it, seizing power on June 1 and defeating further coup attempts until he had consolidated his imperial authority. Septimus remained on the throne until his death (caused by an unknown illness) in 211, and he founded the Severan Dynasty, which remained in power until 235.
In the novel Justinian, Polykhronios fails to re-animate a corpse at the Baths of Zeuxippos while a young Justinian II and others look on. Justinian notes that the baths had been built by Septimus Severus over a century before Constantine I converted to Christianity and founded Constantinople, and is decorated with statues of philosophers and poets and even figures from "false mythology" of Sepitmus Severus' day.
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, Samuel Goldman, on learning of the death of Winston Churchill in 1940, immediately suspects a government-sponsored, politically motivated assassination. He reflected that, while such things were commonplace in totalitarian states such as Germany, Italy and the USSR, they were unheard of in modern democratic Britain. He also reflects that such tactics--arranging to have a prominent political critic run down in the street--is something in keeping with the political style of Septimus Severus, though Septimus would certainly not have used a Bentley.
Francesco I Sforza
In The Gladiator, as part of a homework assignment in which he has to place a feudal lord, a capitalist and a Fascist in Dante's Inferno, Gianfranco Mazzilli chooses Francesco Sforza for his feudal lord, placing him in the Sixth Circle of Hell (the wrathful), since he'd taken Milan by force in 1450.
Henry Hopkins Sibley
Henry Hopkins Sibley (May 25, 1816 – August 23, 1886) was a career officer in the United States Army, who commanded a Confederate cavalry brigade in the American Civil War. He is best remembered for his bungling of the New Mexico Campaign.
In 1862, he attempted to forge a supply-route from California, in defiance of the Union Blockade of the Atlantic and Gulf ports, while also aiming to appropriate the Colorado gold mines to replenish the Confederate treasury. After capturing Albuquerque and Santa Fe, he was forced to retreat after losing the Battle of Glorieta Pass (in today's New Mexico). He was then given minor commands in the Southern Louisiana operations, but was accused of serious blunders, apparently caused by drunkenness.
Franz Sigel (November 18, 1824 – August 21, 1902) was a German military officer, revolutionist and immigrant to the United States who was a teacher, newspaperman, politician, and served as a Union major general in the American Civil War. His ability to recruit German-speaking immigrants to the United States Army received the approval of President Abraham Lincoln, but he was strongly disliked by General-in-Chief Henry Halleck.
In The Guns of the South, Andries Rhoodie, making his initial sales pitch to Robert E. Lee, says that if he tried to market AK-47s to Sigel and his fellow Union generals, he would be rejected, because they are too wedded to their current weapons to consider changing.
Wallis, Duchess of Windsor (previously Wallis Simpson, Wallis Spencer, born Bessie Wallis Warfield 19 June 1896 – 24 April 1986) was an American socialite. Her third husband, Prince Edward, Duke of Windsor, formerly King Edward VIII of Britain, abdicated his throne to marry her.
In The War That Came Early, Wallis Simpson is still fresh in the minds of Britons when the Second World War breaks out in 1938. In Hitler's War, Alistair Walsh and his squadron mates joke that it would be nice if some "popsy" were to sweep the incompetent King Leopold III off the Belgian throne, just as Wallis had dethroned Edward. Then, in The Big Switch, after the Hess Agreement caused Britain to lean closer toward fascism, MP Ronald Cartland tells Walsh that Edward, when still Prince of Wales, had seemed to harbor barely-concealed dictatorial aspirations. Walsh wonders whether Edward's passion for Wallis was the only reason he had forfeited the Crown.
In addition to his prominent direct role in Worldwar, SS commando Otto Skorzeny is referenced in After the Downfall as an object of Hasso Pemsel's hero-worship. Pemsel thinks of Skorzeny's rescue of Benito Mussolini from Allied captivity, and woolgathers up a "coulda-woulda-shoulda" scenario where Skorzeny captures Joseph Stalin out of Moscow. He at first imagines that this might have changed the course of World War II in Germany's favor. But then he decides that the enraged Soviet juggernaut was so powerful that the removal of one man, even the Leader of the Soviet Union, would not have made a difference.
In addition to his prominent role in Southern Victory, "Happy Warrior" Al Smith is referenced in Joe Steele. Mike Sullivan remembers voting for Smith in 1928, and knows his brother Charlie did too. He is certain that no Roman Catholic will be elected President in his lifetime, and can't imagine how Smith would have handled the Great Depression any worse than Herbert Hoover did.
Howard K. Smith
James Smith (September 17, 1719 - July 11, 1806) was a delegate to the Second Continental Congress from the colony/state of Pennsylvania. He signed the Declaration of Independence. He is buried at the First Presbyterian Church in York, Pennsylvania.
In The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, when Peggy Druce speaks at the First Presbyterian Church, her host, Loretta Conway, mentions that James Smith is buried in the churchyard. This leaves Druce, a resident of Philadelphia (which has a glut of American Revolution monuments), unimpressed.
Spartacus (Σπάρτακος, c. 111–71 BC) was a Thracian slave gladiator and one of the leaders of the Third Servile War, a major slave uprising against the Roman Republic. Little is known about Spartacus beyond the events of the war, however all sources agree that he was a former gladiator and an accomplished military leader. This rebellion, interpreted by some as an example of oppressed people fighting for their freedom against a slave-owning oligarchy, has provided inspiration for many political thinkers, and writers of fiction. Although this interpretation is not specifically contradicted by classical historians, no historical account suggests that the insurrection's goal was the universal abolition of slavery.
See also Spartacus for a list of fictional insurrectionists in Turtledove's work who take Spartacus as a nom de guerre.
In After the Downfall, which begins during the last days of Nazi Germany before shifting to a fantasy realm, Stalin is frequently on the mind of Wehrmacht veteran Hasso Pemsel. At one point, Hasso wonders whether Stalin's death or capture in 1943 would have changed the course of World War II, but then concludes that Stalin wasn't as indispensable to Russia as Adolf Hitler was to Germany.
In Turtledove's contributions to Jerry Pournelle's War World Series, set in a future where the USSR was resurrected in the 21st century, the officers of the New Soviet Men have a ritual where they grind their heels in a mosaic portrait of Mikhail Gorbachev and then bow to wall-hung portraits of Lenin and Stalin.
In "The Man who Came Late", Turtledove's sequel to Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, the time-traveling knight Sir Holger describes Stalin as "the Wicked Liege Lord of the Reds" to Alianora and her family. He broadly outlines Stalin's crimes, but points out the threat by the Nazis was such that "nearly every other realm allied with the Reds' liege lord, wicked though he was, in order to defeat the Nazis".
A highly decorated solider during World War I, Starace joined the Fascist movement in Trento in 1920, rising quickly through the ranks and catching the attention of Benito Mussolini, who placed Starace in charge of the Fascist group in Venezia Tridentina. In October 1921, Starace became Vice-Secretary of the National Fascist Party. He joined Mussolini's march on Rome the following year. He rose through the ranks of the National Party, eventually becoming secretary in 1931. While fanatically loyal to Mussolini, he was controversial, and made enemies by the end of his tenure. He took a leave of absence to participate in the invasion of Ethiopia. He returned in 1936 to the secretary position, but was removed in 1939. He became Chief of Staff, but was fired for incompetence in 1941. He was arrested in 1943 after Mussolini's ouster, but was released, and made his way to Mussolini's German-backed Social Republic in northern Italy, but was arrested by the Fascists for having "weakened" the Party while he was secretary. He was released again, and moved to Milan, where he was recognized by anti-Fascist partisans who took him into custody, showed him Mussolini's dead body, and then summarily tried and shot him. His body was strung up next to Mussolini's.
In The Hot War: Bombs Away, George Marshall references Starace's final fate when Harry Truman shares his plan to use atomic bombs in East Germany and in the Soviet Union's satellites with the goal of slowing down the Soviet supply line and perhaps even prompt the governments of the various satellites to reconsider their alliance with Russia, or to prompt the citizens of those states to rebel against their pro-Soviet governments.
Flavius Stilicho (c. 359 – 22 August 408) was a high-ranking general in the Roman army who became, for a time, the most powerful man in the Western Roman Empire. He was half Vandal and married to the niece of Emperor Theodosius I; his regency for the underage Honorius marked the high point of Germanic advancement in the service of Rome. After many years of victories against a number of enemies, both barbarian and Roman, a series of political and military disasters finally allowed his enemies in the court of Honorius to remove him from power, culminating in his arrest and subsequent execution in 408. Edward Gibbon dubbed him “the last of the Roman generals."
George Stoneman, Jr. (August 8, 1822 - September 5, 1894) was a Union general during the American Civil War and commanded cavalry forces for several of the Union's field armies, including the Army of the Potomac. After the war, he served as military governor of Virginia, and became opposed to the radical policies approach to Reconstruction, joining the Democratic Party.
He served as the governor of California from 1883 to 1887.
In The Guns of the South, Stoneman is one of several Union generals who are jokingly used to identify cardboard cutout targets by Confederate troops when the Rivington Men demonstrate the AK-47 to Robert E. Lee and his staff.
William Francis "Willie" Sutton, Jr. (June 30, 1901 – November 2, 1980) was a prolific American bank robber. During his forty-year criminal career he stole an estimated $2 million, and he eventually spent more than half of his adult life in prison and escaped three times. For his talent at executing robberies in disguises, he gained two nicknames, "Willie the Actor" and "Slick Willie". An apocryphal story, published in 1952, has Sutton responding to a reporter's question as to why he robbed banks as: "Because that's where the money is."
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, Turtledove makes this apocryphal line an anachronism. When asked by Gerhart Beilharz why the U-30 has been assigned to patrol the Gulf of Finland for Soviet ships coming out of Leningrad, Julius Lemp replies with "As the American gangster said...", and then recites the line roughly 12 years before anyone heard it.
William Howard Taft
In addition to his direct appearances in early volumes of Southern Victory, President William Howard Taft's role in the OTL 1912 national election is referenced in The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, wherein a version of the 1940 election sees a large faction of the Republican Party snub the nominated candidate Wendell Willkie, and running their own independent ticket.
Theodahad, also known as Thiudahad (Latin: Flavius Theodahatus Rex, Theodahadus, Theodatus; born c. 480 AD in Tauresium – December 536) was king of the Ostrogoths from 534 to 536. His personal instability translated to instability within the kingdom, and served as a pretext for Belisarius of the Byzantine Empire to attack. In 536, after a disastrous defeat, Thiudahad's rival, Vitiges, ordered Thiudahad's death. Thiudahad's throat was likely slit.
In L. Sprague de Camp's Lest Darkness Fall, time-traveler Martin Padway arranges to save Thiudahad from Vitiges, but is forced to replace Thiudahad as his mental health deteriorates. Early on in their relatiosnship, Padway is able to publish a work explaining the heliocentric model of the solar system under Thiudahad's name. In Harry Turtledove's sequel, Tribonian correctly guesses that Padway actually wrote the work.
Titus Flāvius Caesar Vespasiānus Augustus (30 December 39 AD – 13 September 81 AD) was Roman emperor from 79 to 81. A member of the Flavian dynasty, Titus succeeded his father Vespasian upon his death, thus becoming the first Roman Emperor to come to the throne after his own biological father.
Prior to becoming Emperor, Titus gained renown as a military commander. In 70, he besieged and captured Jerusalem, and destroyed the city and the Second Temple, ending the Jewish War. As emperor, he is best known for completing the Colosseum and for his generosity in relieving the suffering caused by two disasters, the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79 and a fire in Rome in 80. After barely two years in office, Titus died of a fever. He was deified by the Roman Senate and succeeded by his younger brother Domitian.
William Barret Travis (August 1, 1809 - March 6, 1836) is best known for his role in the Texas Revolution. In the 1820s he worked as a teacher and attorney in Sparta, Alabama. He also served in the Alabama Militia. In 1831 he left his practice, the militia, and his pregnant wife and son and moved to Mexico where he became involved in the Texas Revolution in 1835, entering the Texan army with the rank of lieutenant colonel at the age of 26. He was assigned as the army's chief recruiting officer. On February 3, 1836, he arrived at the Alamo in San Antonio with a company of reinforcements and relieved Colonel James Neill as the mission's commanding officer. Later that month the mission was beseiged by a large Mexican army under General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. On February 24 he wrote an open letter to all Texan revolutionaries describing the dire situation in which his command found itself but swearing to fight to the death. He sealed the letter in an envelope marked "Victory or Death" and sent it to the town of Gonzales with courier Albert Martin. The letter did not bring Travis reinforcements but did increase the morale of Texan revolutionaries elsewhere and remains a required part of the Texas Department of Education's social studies core curriculum content standards to this day.
In "Lee at the Alamo", as Robert E. Lee prepares to stand his own siege in the Alamo in February 1861, he thinks of the stand made by Davy Crockett, William Travis, James Bowie and others who died almost exactly 25 years earlier.
While Leon Trotsky's life has been extended in some Turtledove timelines, he has no such luck in Worldwar. His OTL death, just two years before the POD, remains a haunting cautionary tale for numerous characters from all levels of the Soviet hierarchy during the Race Invasion of Tosev 3.
Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky (Константи́н Эдуа́рдович Циолко́вский, 17 September [O.S. 5 September] 1857 – 19 September 1935) was a Russian and Soviet rockets scientist and pioneer of the astronautic theory. Along with the German Hermann Oberth and the American Robert Goddard, he is considered to be one of the founding fathers of rocketry and astronautics. His works later inspired leading Soviet rocket engineers such as Sergei Korolev and Valentin Glushko and contributed to the success of the Soviet space program.
Andrei Nikolayevich Tupolev (10 November 1888 – 23 December 1972) was a pioneering Soviet aircraft designer. In 1940, he was arrested for treason against the Soviet Union, but was released in 1944 to build and design aircraft for the state.
Henri de Turenne
Henri de La Tour d’Auvergne, vicomte de Turenne (11 September 1611 — 27 July 1675), Marshal of France, was one of the greatest military commanders during the reign of Louis XIV. Beginning his military career in the Thirty Years’ War (from 1625), he subsequently commanded the royal armies in the civil war of the Fronde (1648–53), in the French invasion of the Spanish Netherlands (1667), and in the third Dutch War (begun in 1672). He was one of six French commanders ever to hold the rank of Marshal-General. Napoleon Bonaparte later deemed him history’s greatest military leader.
William Magear "Boss" Tweed (April 3, 1823 – April 12, 1878) was an American politician and head of Tammany Hall, the name given to the Democratic Party political machine that played a major role in the history of 19th century New York City politics. He was convicted and eventually imprisoned for stealing millions of dollars from the city through political corruption and graft.
He is often referred to erroneously as William Marcy Tweed, due to a newspaper's misprint.
Walter "Wat" Tyler (1341 - 15 June 1381) was the leader of a peasants' revolt in England in 1381 that demanded an egalitarian restructuring of English society. Tyler led an army of fifty thousand peasants in a march on Canterbury and captured that city. He was then invited to parlay with King Richard II. During this parlay, he was fatally stabbed by several of Richard's partisans under circumstances that are not entirely clear.
Pope Urban II
Pope Urban II (c. 1035 – 29 July 1099), born Odo de Châtillon or Otho de Lagery, was Pope from 12 March 1088 to his death in 1099. A native of France, before his papacy he was the Cardinal of Ostia under the name Eudes. He is best known for initiating the First Crusade (1096–1099) and setting up the modern-day Roman Curia in the manner of a royal ecclesiastical court to help run the Catholic Church. He promised forgiveness and pardon for all of the sins of those who would fight to reclaim the holy land, and free the eastern churches. The Crusader motto "Deus vult!" (Latin) or "Dieu le veut"! (French), translating as "God wills it!," is usually considered to be of Urban's devising. Urban died 14 days after the Crusaders' capture of Jerusalem, but before news of the event had reached Italy.
The working title for Through Darkest Europe was God Wills It! after Urban's supposed declaration. Within the novel, this slogan is shouted by countless Aquinist fanatics, often just before committing terrorist acts. Turtledove uses this phrase as a parallel to OTL Islamic terrorists shouting "Allāhu Akbar" i.e. "God is Great". Early in the novel, Khalid al-Zarzisi reflects that the Pope had taken Jerusalem out of the Dar al-Islam for years, but Urban is not named.
Marcus Valerius Corvus
Marcus Valerius Corvus Calenus (c. 370 – c. 270 BC) was an important military commander and politician from the early-to-middle period of the Roman Republic. In a distinguished career, he was elected Roman consul six times, his first at the unusually young age of 23. He was also appointed Dictator two times, and led the armies of the Republic in the first of the Samnite Wars. According to tradition he lived to be 100. Early in his career, he allegedly defeated an entire Gaulish army by killing its leader in single combat.
At the beginning of The Videssos Cycle: The Misplaced Legion, Marcus Scaurus thinks of Valerius' duel against the Gaulish leader. He hopes that a similar outcome will result from his forthcoming confrontation with Viridovix, but is careful not to harbor any unrealistic expectations.
Earl Van Dorn
Earl Van Dorn (September 17, 1820 - May 7, 1863) was a 19th-century American soldier, fighting first for the United States Army in the Mexican War and the campaigns against the Seminoles, then for the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. When his home state of Mississippi seceded in January 1861, he volunteered for its militia and was immediately made a brigadier general, then became major general and commander of all of Mississippi's forces when the militia's previous commander, Jefferson Davis, stepped aside to accept the position of President of the Confederate States.
In The Guns of the South, when Nate Caudell reviews a copy of Bruce Catton's The American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War, he finds a photo of Earl Van Dorn, and is astonished that the photos is printed directly onto the page, not a woodcut.
Gaius Terentius Varro
Gaius Terentius Varro (fl. 218 - 200 BC) was a Roman politician and general active during the Second Punic War. A plebeian son of a butcher, he was a populist politician who was elected consul for the year 216. While holding that office, he was decisively defeated by Hannibal at the Battle of Cannae.
In The United States of Atlantis, Custis Cawthorne reminds the Atlantean Assembly that while Varro suffered the worst defeat in Roman history, the Senate acknowledged that he did the best he could have done under the circumstances, and did not hold the defeat against him. They passed him a vote of thanks for not despairing of the Republic. He convinces the Assembly to bestow a similar honor on Victor Radcliff for his heroic retreat from the First Battle of Weymouth.
Sextus Quinctilius Varus
Sextus Quinctilius Varus (d. 42 BC) was a Senator of the Roman Republic, and served as quaestor (a treasury official) in 49 BC. Varus was in the faction of Marcus Brutus and Caius Cassius against Julius Caesar, although it is unknown whether he was among Caesar's assassins. He appears to have committed suicide after Trumivirate victory over the Senators at Philippi. His estate does not seem to have been attainted, as his son Publius Quinctilius Varus (probably four years old at his father's death) was allowed into the inner circle of the Emperor Augustus.
In addition to her more significant roles in Turtledove's works, Queen Victoria of Britain and her reign are mentioned posthumously in a few works. For example, in The Hot War: Bombs Away, Vasili Yasevich finds British gold sovereigns with Victoria's image in the atomic rubble of Harbin.
Vlad the Impaler
Vlad III, known as Vlad the Impaler (Romanian: Vlad Țepeș) or Vlad Dracula (1428/31-1476/77), was Voivode (ruler) of Wallachia (now part of Romania) three different times between 1448 and his death. During his reigns, Vlad used the practice of impalement to punish and intimidate his enemies. Books describing Vlad's cruel acts were among the first bestsellers in German-speaking territories. In Russia, popular stories suggested that Vlad was able to strengthen central government only through applying brutal punishments, and a similar view was adopted by most Romanian historians in the 19th century, who tended to overlook the cruelty in the face his frequent opposition to the Ottoman Empire (although Vlad opportunistically accepted aid from the Ottomans when it served his purposes).
Vlad's reputation for cruelty and his patronymic inspired the name of the vampire Count Dracula.
Kliment Voroshilov (4 February 1881 – 2 December 1969) was a Russian and Soviet soldier and politician. He joined the Russian Imperial Army in 1903 and served in World War I. He joined the Bolsheviks during the Revolution and transferred his commission to the Red Army when that army was founded. He retired in 1953 with the rank of Marshal; however, despite being retired, he continued to hold the position of Marshal of the Soviet Union until his death. (Marshal of the Soviet Union was the highest military rank in the USSR with the exception of the purely honorary title of Generalissimo of the Soviet Union held by Josef Stalin in 1945.) His political offices included Defense Minister (1935-1969), People's Commisar for the Defense of the Soviet Union (1925-1940), and Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union (1953-1960). He also sat in the Politburo from 1926 to 1960.
Voroshilov was a favorite of Stalin and survived the destalinizing purges of Nikita Khrushchev in the 1950s and early 1960s. Despite attempts by Leonid Brezhnev to isolate Voroshilov politically, the marshal remained very popular and, to varying extents, influential until his death in 1969.
The K-V series of Soviet tanks was named in Voroshilov's honor.
Gouverneur Kemble Warren (January 8, 1830 – August 8, 1882) was a civil engineer and prominent general in the U.S. Army during the American Civil War. He is best remembered for arranging the last-minute defense of Little Round Top during the Battle of Gettysburg, but his subsequent service as a corps commander and his remaining military career were ruined during the Battle of Five Forks, when he was relieved of command by Philip Sheridan.
In The Guns of the South, Warren is one of several Union generals who are jokingly used to identify cardboard cutout targets by Confederate troops when the Rivington Men demonstrate the AK-47 to Robert E. Lee and his staff.
Given his status as military hero of the American Revolution and as the first President of the United States, George Washington is routinely referenced in Turtledove's work. While he is often used posthumously to provide the reader insight into a given timeline, there are plenty of references that are merely incidental. For example, in Worldwar: Upsetting the Balance, Vyacheslav Molotov sees a statue of Washington in New York City, and dismisses it by saying "he is dressed like an aristocrat." In "The Haunted Bicuspid," William Legrand compares his lifelong dental woes to those of Washington.
Stand Watie, aka Degataga (December 12, 1806 – September 9, 1871) was a leader of the Cherokee Nation, and the only Native American to attain a general's rank in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. He commanded the Confederate Indian cavalry of the Army of the Trans-Mississippi, made up mostly of Cherokee, Muskogee and Seminole, and was the final Confederate general in the field to cease hostilities at war's end. Watie served as Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation from 1862 until 1866.
In The Guns of the South, General Jeb Stuart tells his superior Robert E. Lee that America Will Break agent Konrad de Buys has performed "wilder in battle than any of Stand Watie’s red Indians in the trans-Mississippi."
Alfred Lothar Wegener (1 November 1880 – November 1930) was a German polar researcher, geophysicist and meteorologist.
During his lifetime he was primarily known for his achievements in meteorology and as a pioneer of polar research, but today he is most remembered for advancing the theory of continental drift (Kontinentalverschiebung) in 1912, which hypothesized that the continents were slowly drifting around the Earth. His hypothesis was controversial and not widely accepted until the 1950s, when numerous discoveries such as palaeomagnetism provided strong support for continental drift, and thereby a substantial basis for today's model of Plate tectonics.
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, KG, GCB, GCH, PC, FRS (1 May 1769 – 14 September 1852), was an Anglo-Irish soldier and statesman, and one of the leading military and political figures of 19th-century Britain. After fighting against French invasion forces in Spain during the Peninsular War (1808-1813), his defeat of Napoleon Bonaparte at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 put him in the top rank of Britain's military heroes. A member of the Tory Party, he was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from January 1828 until November 1830, and again briefly in November-December 1834.
A famous Wellington quote says that men recruited as common soldiers "are the scum of the earth." In Liberating Atlantis, Balthasar Sinapis discusses this quote with Consuls Leland Newton and Jeremiah Stafford, when they have received word that Atlantean Army soldiers have been raping and pillaging, contrary to orders. Sinapis says: "It is to be expected. Officers may be gentlemen. Your regulations say they are. So do the ones in most of the kingdoms of Europe. Perhaps that makes it so. But soldiers? My dear fellow! The Duke of Wellington, a very fine commander even if he is an Englishman, calls them the scum of the earth. Believe me, your Excellency, he knows what he is talking about, too."
Saint Wenceslaus (c. 907 – 28 September 935), Wenceslas I or Václav the Good was the kníže (duke, sometimes mistranslated as king) of Bohemia from 921 until his assassination in 935. His younger brother, Boleslaus the Cruel, was complicit in the murder.
His martyrdom and the popularity of several biographies gave rise to a reputation for heroic virtue that resulted in his elevation to sainthood. He came to be seen as the patron saint of the Czech state. He is the subject of the well-known "Dobrý král Vaclav", a carol for Saint Stephen's Day (26 December), later adapted to English as "Good King Wenceslas".
Eugene Paul "E. P." Wigner (born Wigner Pál Jenő, 1902–1995) was a Hungarian physicist and mathematician who became an American citizen and participated in the Manhattan Project. Wigner is important for having laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics as well as for his research into the structure of the atomic nucleus, and for his several mathematical theorems. Wigner first identified Xe-135 "poisoning" in nuclear reactors, and for this reason it is sometimes referred to as "Wigner poisoning".
In Worldwar: Tilting the Balance, science fiction fan Sam Yeager contrasts real world scientist like Eugene Wigner and his colleagues, generally "dumpy foreigners with funny accents," with the "near-supermen" scientists found in the stories he read. Unlike the other scientists mentioned in this passage, Wigner has no further role in the series.
In addition to his more significant Turtledove references, Kaiser Wilhelm II provides a kind of central metaphor in The War That Came Early. While the titular version of the Second World War rages on, repeating many of the exact same ups and downs of the First, numerous characters on all sides reevaluate Wilhelm's legacy. At one point, Peggy Druce declares that Wilhelm was "not such a bad guy", and a "regular Rotarian" compared to Adolf Hitler. Her husband Herb, who fought for America in 1918, is somewhat disturbed by this observation.
Frances Elizabeth Caroline Willard (September 28, 1839 – February 17, 1898) was an American educator, temperance reformer, and women's suffragist. Her influence was instrumental in the passage of the 18th (Prohibition) and 19th (Women Suffrage) Amendments to the United States Constitution in the 1920s. Willard became the national president of Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) in 1879, and remained president until her death in 1898. She developed the slogan "Do Everything" for the WCTU, encouraging its membership to engage in a broad array of social reforms through lobbying, petitioning, preaching, publishing, and education. Her vision encompassed raising the age of consent, labor reforms such as the eight-hour work day, prison reform, scientific temperance instruction, Christian socialism, and the global expansion of women's rights.
William I of England
William I of England, aka William the Conqueror or William the Bastard, (1027 - 9 September 1087) was Duke of Normandy in France. In 1066, when the royal succession of England was in dispute, he led a Norman army across the English Channel, and landed near Hastings where his forces defeated those of Anglo-Saxon leader Harold Godwinson on 14 October. After further success he marched in triumph into London, and was crowned King of England on 25 December. He introduced Norman culture to England, overhauled the kingdom's law codes, and is considered England's first modern king.
William's Normans are considered the last force to invade England successfully from outside the island of Great Britain. A French force in 1216 nearly matched this achievement but just barely failed to consolidate their success.
William I is referenced throughout the Atlantis Series. The early pages of "New Hastings" are set in Hastings, and reference the masonry castle he built there after victory. By the 15th century, the time of the story's setting, that castle is the keep of the Baron of Hastings, Sir Thomas Hoo. In 1453, Hoo meets Edward Radcliffe in William's castle.
In The United States of Atlantis, we learn that schoolboys are required to learn William's accomplishments on pain of corporal punishment. Upon his selection as Consul of Atlantis, Victor Radcliff is vaguely horrified to realize his exploits might also be treated the same way as William's. Conversely, Thomas Paine was a sharp critic of William.
William II of England
William II of England (c. 1056 – 2 August 1100), the third son of William I the Conqueror, was King of England from 1087 until 1100. William is commonly known as William Rufus (William the Red), perhaps because of his red-faced appearance.
Although William was an effective soldier, he was a ruthless ruler and, it seems, was little liked by those he governed: according to the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, he was "hated by almost all his people." However, chroniclers tended to take a dim view of William's reign, arguably on account of his long and difficult struggles with the Catholic Church.
William seems to have been a flamboyant character, and his reign was marked by his bellicose temperament. He did not marry, nor did he produce any offspring, legitimate or otherwise.
He was killed by an arrow during a hunting expedition. Historians have long debated whether this was accidental or deliberate, with the latter being likely due to William's strong unpopularity. If this is true, then William remains the most recent English monarch to be assassinated while reigning; a few kings since have been murdered only after a formal dethronement.
In The Great War: American Front, the British construct an artificial island fortress to protect the entrance to Pearl Harbor from enemy attack. The fort is named "Fort William Rufus" in honor of this king. However, it is known worldwide by its nickname of the "Concrete Battleship."
William III of England
William III & II (4 November 1650 – 8 March 1702) was a sovereign Prince of Orange of the House of Orange-Nassau by birth. From 1672 he governed as Stadtholder William III of Orange (Dutch: Willem III van Oranje) over Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht, Gelderland, and Overijssel of the Republic of the Netherlands. From 1689 he reigned as William III over England and Ireland. By coincidence, his regnal number (III) was the same for both Orange and England. As King of Scotland, he was William II. In what became known as the "Glorious Revolution", on 5 November 1688 William invaded England in an action that ultimately deposed King James II & VII and won him the crowns of England, Scotland and Ireland. In the British Isles, William ruled jointly with his wife, Mary II, until her death on 28 December 1694. The period of their joint reign is often referred to as "William and Mary".
William himself reigned until 8 March 1702, from when he died of pneumonia, a complication from a broken collarbone he received after falling from his horse.
In The War That Came Early: Coup d'Etat, the military coup that removes the increasingly authoritarian Prime Minister Sir Horace Wilson is noted to be the first time such an event has happened since the ascension of William and Mary.
In "The House That George Built", H.L. Mencken reflects on the fact that Wilson's decision to enter the United States into World War I against Germany enraged Mencken to the point of temporarily quitting the Baltimore Sun.
In The Man With the Iron Heart, Diana McGraw harkens back to Wilson's stated goal that World War I would be the war to end all wars when she begins calling for the withdrawal of American forces from Germany after World War II.
In The War That Came Early: The Big Switch, President Franklin D. Roosevelt references his time in Woodrow Wilson's administration, likening the Hess Agreement to just another example of Europeans being Europeans before announcing the suspension of U.S. support for the Allies. In the sequel, Coup d'Etat, Wilson's close victory over Charles Evans Hughes in the 1916 presidential election is discussed.
In Joe Steele, Wilson, being the Democratic Party's only President during the first three decades of the 20th century, is remembered with nostalgia in 1932, as the Democratic Convention tries to break its deadlock. Wilson is also invoked in President Steele's Pearl Harbor speech.
In addition to his direct appearance in "The Daimon," Xenophon and his army of Ten Thousand are referenced in numerous Turtledove works. For example, in Opening Atlantis: Nouveau Redon: Victor Radcliff shouts Xenophon's famous cry "The sea! The sea!" after evading French and Spanish pursuers during the 1761 war, and thinks a bit about the Ten Thousand. Also, in Settling Accounts: Return Engagement, Tom Colleton was reminded of Xenophon and was tempted to shout "Thalatta! Thalatta!" when he first glimpsed Lake Erie by Sandusky.
Yesugei Baghatur or Yesükhei (Modern Mongolian: Есүхэй баатар, Yesukhei baatar; died 1171), was a major chief of the Khamag Mongol confederation and the father of Temujin, Genghis Khan. Yesugei's name literally means "like nine", meaning he had the auspicious qualities of the number nine, a lucky number to the Mongols.
Yesugei was the son of Bartan Baghatur, who was the son of Khabul Khan, who was recognized as a khagan by the Jin Dynasty. Khabul Khan was, in turn, the grandson of the Mongol chief Khaidu, the first to try to unite all of the Mongols. Temujin's mother was Hoelun (a daughter of the Olkhunut forest tribe), abducted by Yesugei and his brothers from her newlywed husband.
When Temujin was nine years old, Yesugei died. The Secret History records that he was poisoned by Tatars while sharing a meal on the way home from finding Temujin a wife.
Yesugei had also a "bloodbrother" or anda, Toghrul Khan (later Wang Khan). Toghrul initially helped Temujin conquer the tribes, but later defected to Genghis' anda and rival, Jamukha.
In "The Barbecue, the Movie, & Other Unfortunately Not So Relevant Material", when Lasoporp Rof, wearing the garb of a Mongol tribesman, approaches T.G. Kahn in his office, Kahn assumes Rof is part of a prank set up by his father, Professor Kahn. When T.G. Kahn says "I presume you know my father," Lasoporp Rof replies "No, Excellency, never did I have the privilege of meeting that great hero Yesugei."
Yochanan bar Nafcha
Rabbi Yochanan bar Nafcha (c. 180 - c. 279) was a rabbi in the early era of the Talmud. He was born in Tzippori in the Roman Empire province of Galilee in what is now Israel. His father, a blacksmith, died prior to his birth, and his mother died soon after; he was raised by his grandfather in Tzippori. Within his lifetime, he was considered the greatest rabbi of his generation.
- A World of Difference, p. 44.
- The Big Switch, pg. 388, 390.
- The Two Georges pg. 442, MPB; 288, HC.
- Eruption, p. 400-402.
- A World of Difference, 127-128.
- Through Darkest Europe, pg. 233.
- West and East, p. 405.
- See e.g. Departures, pg. 227.
- The Valley-Westside War, pg. 157.
- Videssos Cycle: Volume Two, p. 222.
- The Big Switch, p. 180.
- The Disunited States of America, p. 198.
- Alpha and Omega, pg. 65, hc.
- Days of Infamy, pgs. 107. Paperback
- Second Contact, p. 71-72.
- In the Presence of Mine Enemies, p. 83-84.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 68.
- Coup d'Etat, p. 208.
- The House of Daniel, loc. 3015, ebook.
- Tales of Riverworld, pg. 183.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 61.
- The Disunited States of America, p. 160.
- A World of Difference, p. 24.
- In the Balance, p. 199.
- Opening Atlantis, pg. 24.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 92, 107.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, p. 35.
- End of the Beginning, pg. 299, HC.
- Conan of Venarium, p. 143.
- Liberating Atlantis, p. 257.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 164.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, pg. 119.
- All Fall Down, pg. 151, HC.
- That is Not Dead, loc., 3508, ebook.
- Coup d'Etat, Chapter 17
- Household Gods, p. 77 HC, p. 89 PB.
- Aftershocks, pg. 299.
- Liberating Atlantis, p. ***
- Arabesques 2, pgs. 65-66, mmp.
- In the Balance, p. 357, HC.
- Drive to the East, pg. 310.
- Striking the Balance, p. 381, HC.
- The Two Georges, frontispiece map. The name Cranmer is mentioned nowhere in the novel proper.
- See Give Me Back My Legions!, p. 28.
- See, e.g. Futureshocks, pg. 106, TPB, Lou Anders, ed.
- We Install and Other Stories, p. 136, 138.
- The Guns of the South, p. 260.
- The Guns of the South, p. 61-63.
- See, e.g., Joe Steele, pg. 7, HC.
- Colonization: Second Contact, p. 291-292, PB.
- The Two Georges map. Disraeli, whether the man or the province, is not mentioned at all in the novel proper.
- Joe Steele, pg. 6, HC.
- The Guns of the South, pg. 397-398.
- Two Fronts, pg. 234, HC.
- Bombs Away, pg. 100.
- The Guns of the South, p. 436.
- Atlantis and Other Places, p. 423.
- "Hail! Hail!", loc. 417-437.
- Bombs Away, pg. 197, HC.
- See, e.g., 3XT, pg. 216.
- Curious Notions, pg. 19.
- The United States of Atlantis, pg. 436.
- Coup d'Etat, chapter 18.
- See, e.g., Atlantis and Other Places, p. 120.
- Aftershocks, p. 140-141, HC.
- Household Gods, p. 77 HC, p. 89 PB.
- Ruled Britannia, pg. 82-83.
- Ibid., pg. 119.
- The Guns of the South, p. 264-265.
- Coup d'Etat, p. 132, HC.
- The Gladiator, pg. 140.
- The Valley-Westside War, p. 127.
- Fallout, pg. 171, HC.
- Hitler's War, pg. 13
- In the Presence of Mine Enemies, p. 165.
- Bombs Away, pg. 300, HC.
- All Fall Down, pg. 47, HC.
- Ibid, pgs. 159-160.
- Things Fall Apart, pg. 141, HC.
- And the Last Trump Shall Sound, pgs. 26-27, tpb., pg. 29, loc. 392, ebook.
- After the Downfall, p. 279, HC.
- Aftershocks, p. 381, HC.
- After the Downfall, p. 66.
- West and East, pg. 225
- Ibid., pg. 177.
- The Guns of the South, p. 451.
- The Valley-Westside War, p. 130-132.
- The Big Switch, pg. 238, pb.
- Days of Infamy, pg. 283, HC.
- Upsetting the Balance, pg. 428, HC.
- Ruled Britannia, pg. 73.
- All Fall Down, pgs. 399-402.
- Bombs Away, p. 198.
- Tales of Riverworld, pg. 183.
- The United States of Atlantis, p. 228.
- Hitler's War, p. 484, HC.
- In the Presence of Mine Enemies, p. 119-121
- Atlantis and Other Places, p. 105.
- Opening Atlantis, p. 25.
- The Guns of the South, p. 310.
- Joe Steele, p. 139
- In High Places, pg. 93.
- The House of Daniel, p. 128.
- Fort Pillow, pg. 1, HC.
- Hitler's War, pg. 180, HC.
- West and East, pg. 66, HC.
- The Guns of the South, p. 310.
- See e.g. Departures, pgs. 41-42, pb.
- "Hail! Hail!", loc. 898-929.
- The House of Daniel, loc. 3478, ebook.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, pg. 423.
- In the Balance, p. 439. HC.
- Atlantis and Other Places, pg. 105.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, pg. 296.
- "Hail! Hail!", loc. 611, ebook.
- The Guns of the South, pg. 6
- Arabasques 2, pg. 52, mmp.
- The Guns of the South, p. 262.
- Fort Pillow, pg. 8.
- Fort Pillow, pg. 8.
- Joe Steele, pg. 160.
- Ibid, p. 248.
- The Victorious Opposition, pg. 67.
- The Guns of the South, p. 377.
- See e.g. The Guns of the South, p. 132.
- Coup d'Etat, pg. 155.
- Joe Steele, pg. 327, HC.
- Ibid, p. 248.
- The Guns of the South, p. 310.
- Ruled Britannia, p. 54.
- Atlantis and Other Places, p. 120.
- Joe Steele, pg. 77, HC.
- Ibid., pg. 432.
- American Front, p. 123.
- The Guns of the South, p. 310.
- Lest Darkness Fall & Timeless Tales Written in Tribute (second edition), pgs. 400, loc. 5255, ebook.
- A Different Flesh, p. 160-163.
- All Fall Down, pg. 116.
- Arabesques 2, pg. 51, mmp.
- Curious Notions, p. 162
- The House of Daniel, p. 126.
- The Guns of the South, p. 412.
- In the Balance, p. 80, HC.
- Drakas!, pg. 264, mmp.
- Bombs Away, p. 168.
- Household Gods, p. 107.
- Joe Steele, pg. 88.
- Ibid., pg. 125.
- Things Fall Apart, pg. 85, HC.
- "Hail! Hail!", loc. 374, ebook.
- Days of Infamy , pgs. 297-300, HC.
- See, e.g., Atlantis and Other Places, pg. 325.
- Striking the Balance, p. 381, HC.
- The United States of Atlantis, p. 392.
- The Big Switch, chapter 14.
- The Valley-Westside War, p. 70-71.
- In at the Death, pg. 591, tpb.
- We Install and Other Stories, loc 1772.
- In High Places, p. 200.
- Coup d'Etat, pg. 155.
- The Two Georges, pg. 421, MPB.
- Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, March/April 2021
- Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, March/April 2021
- How Few Remain, pg. 51.
- How Few Remain, pg. 27.
- The Guns of the South, p. 247.
- Atlantis and Other Places, p. 413.
- All Fall Down, pg. 241, HC.
- Bombs Away, pgs. 135-137, ebook.
- "Hail! Hail!", e-book, loc. 29.
- The Big Switch, p. 230 HC.
- Ibid., p. 280.
- Ibid., p. 388.
- See, e.g. How Few Remain, pg. 51, mpb.
- Joe Steele, p. 265.
- Gunpowder Empire, p. 174.
- The Valley-Westside War, p. 40.
- Kaleidoscope, pg. 75, MPB.
- The Big Switch, p. 168.
- In the Balance, p. 398, HC.
- After the Downfall, p. 154, 164.
- End of the Beginning, pg. 172.
- The Guns of the South, p. 360.
- End of the Beginning, pg. 172.
- Bombs Away, pgs. 135-137, ebook.
- The Big Switch, pg. 388, 390.
- In at the Death, pg. 230.
- See e.g. Departures, pgs. 164-165.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 60-61.
- See e.g. Departures, pgs. 164-165.
- In the Balance, p. 425, HC.
- Down to Earth, p. 317, HC.
- The Guns of the South, p. 357-358.
- In at the Death, pg. 386.
- Fort Pillow, pg. 2.
- Liberating Atlantis, p. 115.
- In the Balance, pg. 485.
- Hitler's War, pg. 16., HC
- Tales of Riverworld, pg. 175.
- Striking the Balance, p. 170-171, HC.
- Walk in Hell, mmp, pg. 35.
- Return Engagement, pg. 269, hc.
- Upsetting the Balance, pg. 170, PB.
- Ruled Britannia, pg. 207.
- See e.g. Departures, pg. 100.
- Atlantis and Other Places, p. 120.
- Hitler's War, pg. 9.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, p. 224.
- The Big Switch, p. 296-297, HC.
- Ibid., p. 336.
- Second Contact, p. 258, PB.
- Fallout, loc. 4826, ebook.
- "Hail! Hail!", loc. 365.
- Gunpowder Empire, ch. Six, p. 120.
- In High Places, p. 267.
- How Few Remain, pg. 52.
- Down to Earth, p. 203, HC.
- See, e.g., 3XT, pg. 216.
- West and East, p. 405.
- Justinian, pg 48.
- The Big Switch ch 14
- The Gladiator, pg. 140.
- All Fall Down, pg. 186, HC.
- How Few Remain, pg. 76, mmp.
- The Guns of the South, p. 23.
- Hitler's War, p. 119.
- The Big Switch, p. 342.
- Joe Steele, p. 29.
- Coup d'Etat, chapter 7.
- After the Downfall, p. 143.
- Bombs Away, pgs. 135-137, ebook.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 243.
- The Guns of the South, pg. 7.
- See,e.g., Counting Up, Counting Down, mmp, pg. 82.
- The Big Switch, p. 260-261, HC.
- The Big Switch, p. 336.
- Lest Darkness Fall & Timeless Tales Written in Tribute (second edition), pgs. 382, loc. 4995, ebook.
- Through Darkest Europe, p. 60.
- E.g., In the Balance, p. 225, HC; Tilting the Balance, p. 208, HC.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, pg. 50, HC.
- Second Contact, p. 258, PB.
- The United States of Atlantis, p. 228.
- Joe Steele, pg. 229.
- Opening Atlantis, pg. 165, HC.
- Through Darkest Europe, pg. 25, HC.
- See e.g. Videssos Cycle: Volume One, pg. 15.
- The Guns of the South, pg. 420, mmp.
- The United States of Atlantis, p. 69.
- E.g., Give Me Back My Legions!, p. 3.
- Bombs Away, pg. 100
- Coup d'Etat ch 7
- The Guns of the South, pg. 7.
- Upsetting the Balance, p. 320, HC.
- The Enchanter Completed, p. 232.
- The Guns of the South, p. 79.
- Things Fall Apart, pgs. 165-166, HC.
- Liberating Atlantis, ch. 17.
- In the Presence of Mine Enemies, p. 297-298.
- Tilting the Balance, pg. 15.
- Map The Two Georges, frontispiece.
- Coup d'Etat, p. 208-209.
- Upsetting the Balance, pg. 428, HC.
- Opening Atlantis, pg. 33, HC.
- The United States of Atlantis, pg. 436.
- Ibid. pg. 107, HC.
- American Front, pgs. 154-157.
- Coup d'Etat, pg. 155.
- The Two Georges, pg. 421, MPB.
- The Man With the Iron Heart, pg. 284.
- The Big Switch, pg. 337, TPB.
- Coup d'Etat, Chapter 1.
- Joe Steele, chapter I, generally.
- Ibid, pg. 248.
- Opening Atlantis, p. 364.
- Return Engagement, pgs. 264-265, hc.
- See e.g. Departures, pg. 189-190.