Thursday, 16 May 2013

An A to Z of Ruritania

I have read Anthony Hope’s PRISONER OF ZENDA and RUPERT OF HENZAU several times, and as a result I have built-up an A to Z of the places and characters mentioned in the books.

I thought that these might be of interest to some of my regular blog readers, so here they are.

Places
  • Elphberg, Royal House of: Ruling family of Ruritania
  • Hentzau: Estate and title held by Rupert, Count of Hentzau
  • Strelsau: Capital city of Ruritania
  • Tarlenheim, Chateau of: Five miles from Zenda
  • Zenda, Castle of: Fifty miles from Strelsau and ten miles from the border.
  • Zenda, Forest of
  • Zenda, Hunting Lodge
People
  • Bauer: Swiss supporter of Rupert, Count of Hentzau
  • Bersonin: Mercenary in the service of Duke Michael of Zenda
  • De Gautet: Mercenary in the service of Duke Michael of Zenda
  • Detchard: Mercenary in the service of Duke Michael of Zenda
  • Elphberg, Flavia, Princess (later Queen) of Ruritania
  • Elphberg, Rudolf, King of Ruritania
  • Helsing, Baron: Chancellor of Ruritania
  • Helsing, Baroness: Wife of Baron Helsing
  • Helsing, Miss: Daughter of Baron Helsing
  • Hentzau, Rupert, Count of
  • Herbert: Huntsman and brother of Simon
  • Holf, Johan: Duke Michael of Zenda’s gamekeeper
  • Holf, Max: Supporter of Duke Michael of Zenda
  • Holf, Mistress: Mother of Johan Holf and housekeeper at Duke Michael of Zenda's hunting-lodge in Zenda. Three years after the death of Duke Michael of Zenda, she was running a food shop and lodging house at 19 Königstraße, Strelsau.
  • Holf, Rosa: Sister of Johan Holf
  • James: Servant of Rudolf Rassendyll
  • Joseph: Servant at the Zenda Hunting Lodge
  • Krafstein: Supporter of Duke Michael of Zenda
  • Lauengram: Supporter of Duke Michael of Zenda
  • Luzau-Rischenheim, Count of: Cousin of Rupert of Henzau
  • Rassendyll, Rudolf: Distant cousin of Rudolf (Elphberg), King of Ruritania
  • Sapt, Colonel: Later Constable of Zenda
  • Simon: King’s Huntsman and brother of Herbert
  • Strakencz, Marshal: Commander of the Ruritanian Army
  • Strelsau, Cardinal/Archbishop of: Archbishop of Strelsau and the senior Roman Catholic prelate in Ruritania
  • Strelsau, Michael, Duke of: (Black Michael)
  • Von Bernenstein: Guards officer
  • Von Strofzin, Anton: Cousin of Helga, Countess von Tarlenheim
  • Von Tarlenheim, Fritz, Count of
  • Von Tarlenheim, Helga, Countess of
  • Von Tarlenheim, Stanislas, Count of: Owner of Chateau of Tarlenheim

6 comments:

  1. The film version Prisoner of Zena (1937) is probably the best treatment of the book, although I have to admit the send-up in The Great Race (1965) was pretty good as well. From a wargame standpoint, one can hypothesize what a civil war in Ruritania might look like rule-wise, with obsolete equipment in the original publication date of 1894. If one adds in the possibility of the Central Powers or the UK intervening, you could enjoy a campaign.

    BTW, a free download of Anthony Hope’s original The Prisoner of Zenda and the sequel Rupert of Hentzau is available on Project Gutenberg, along with other of his works.

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  2. CoastConFan,

    I agree that the 1937 film version of the story is the best I have seen.

    Had Black Michael lived it would have provided an interesting background for a small but savage civil war between his supporters and those of the Rudolf/Flavia faction. I suspect that the Ruritanian Army would have split 50/50 between the two sides, and that outside intervention by the German and Austro-Hungarian Empires would have been inevitable.

    I have both books on my Kindle, along with quite a lot of other late 19th century literature.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  3. Oh no Bob I fear another game potentiality rearing its head....

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  4. Tradgardmastare,

    I was thinking that it would fit in well with my PORTABLE WARGAME rules, especially as I already have some German/Prussian and Austro-Hungarian 15mm-scale armies.

    On the other hand, it would also be a very nice 40mm or 54mm-scale FLW project.

    So many choices!

    All the best,

    Bob

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  5. On one side you have the staunch monarchists fighting to maintain the status quo of King Rupert’s regime and on the other a huge spectrum of well meaning reformers, people tired of the corruption and waste, anarchists, neo Charterists, agents of the Tsar, republicans, mobs, and reactionaries. It stats to look a bit like the Spanish Civil War in that case. I see a lot of foreign intrigue and possible intervention. Then again a quick resolution would be in best interest of both sides since there is no telling how the international community might react. Let off the bomb of a possible phony King Rupert and it might end up in a Balkan War scenario. Sound impossible? Royal pretenders have caused more than one civil war in the past centuries. The Wikipedia article of Ruritania doesn’t paint a pretty picture of the government and a suspiciously homogenous ethnic population.

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  6. CoastConFan,

    A very interesting perspective. I can see the possibilities of a civil war in Ruritania turning into a rehearsal for World War I ... and as the basis for a great wargame campaign that combines elements of diplomacy, roleplay, and conventional battles.

    If I had the time (and the figures) I might well pursue this idea further ... but for the moment I have one or two other matters to deal with first.

    All the best,

    Bob

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