Nathan (vovat) wrote,

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Ev Quest

As I mentioned yesterday, the geography of Ev is a little confusing. While Ozma of Oz places the entrance to the Nome Kingdom in the northern part of Ev, the map in the Tik-Tok of Oz endpapers puts Ev to the northeast of the Nomes' domain, and later books go by the map in placing new locations within Ev. In their map for the Oz Club, James E. Haff and Dick Martin accounted for this by making Ev bigger, and placing the Nomes' homeland more or less in the middle of it. Perhaps the northeastern part of Ev is the domain of the Red Jinn, whom Thompson refers to as a ruler in Ev without clearly defining his territory.

The part of Ev between the seashore and King Evardo's castle is mostly farmland and deciduous forest. It's around here that the famous lunchbox and dinner pail trees grow, with a fully prepared meal inside each container. While trees bearing unusual items were common in Mo, they actually hadn't yet appeared in an Oz book at the time of Ozma, although they would later on. I wonder if the lunch and dinner trees were planted by Wam, the wizard who was responsible for the Travelers' Trees in Oz. The area above the Nome Kingdom, known as Nome Man's Land, is a mountainous wasteland, while Jinnicky's domain is said to be largely tropical in climate, albeit apparently requiring heat in the winter. Silver Princess refers to it as having orange and lemon trees, as well as coconut palms, and the illustrations show plants bearing pitchers, bottles, teacups, and orreries (mechanical models of the solar system). Also in Jinnicky's domain is a field of pink feathers that violently tickle anyone who gets near them, presumably planted by Gludwig during his usurpation of the Jinn's throne. The Red Jinn owns fifty ruby mines as well, and I have to suspect that operating mines that close to the Nome Kingdom comes with its own risks.

Part of King Evardo's castle was demolished during Princess Langwidere's regency, and it's unknown whether it was built back again. Near the castle is the capital city of Evna, which is never really explored in any of the Oz books, but is known as the former home of the great inventors Smith and Tinker. These partners, whose known inventions included Tik-Tok, the Giant with the Hammer, and the Hundred-Year Alarm Clock, both disappeared from Ev during Evoldo's reign. Mr. Smith drowned in a painting of a river, while Mr. Tinker climbed a ladder to the Moon and decided to stay there. While Baum gives the two only last names, extra-canonical sources refer to them as Rejano Edison Smith and Ezra P. Tinker. And Wooglet makes a reference to Mr. Smith's grandson now running their old firm.

Other significant locations and inhabitants within Ev include:

Wheelers - These people have wheels, made of the same material as fingernails and toenails, instead of hands and feet, and wheel around in order to get places. They're mischievous, and lay claim to the lunchbox and dinner pail trees, but in reality they're not all that harmful. They wear colorful clothing and straw hats, but it's not clear who dresses them.

Raks - Huge animals that can run, fly, and swim, and breathe out smoke that smells like salt and pepper (how anyone can smell salt isn't stated). They inhabit the wastelands, and cannot be killed, but Private Jo Files of Oogaboo did manage to wound one with his musket.

Rash - A desert country with a somewhat Arabian feel and a predominant color of pink. The people wear robes and turbans, and are unfortunately prone to rashes. Rash is ruled by a pasha, and when the former ruler Asha retired and left the country to study radio, his brother Irasha (or Irashi; the text of Hungry Tiger spells it both ways with no real indication as to which is correct) took the opportunity to steal the throne. He threw the true heir, his nephew, to a tiger to be eaten, but that big cat fortunately turned out to be the friendly Hungry Tiger, who helped the prince to win back his throne. It's not clear whether Rash is politically part of Ev, but the current ruler's full first name, Evered, might indicate a link to Evardo's family.

Big Wigs - Residing in Immense City, a place where everything is oversize, the Big Wigs are giants only when they wear their magical wigs. Since the country and its animals appear to be really big anyway, it's been suggested that the Big Wigs might have driven off a group of actual giants who inhabited the country in the past. Immense City has its own king and queen, and their daughter Princess Elma briefly kept the Hungry Tiger as a pet.

Rolling Country - A part of Ev where the land rolls like the waves of the sea. Sort of similar to the Ripple Lands in between the Whimsies' and Growleywogs' countries, actually.

Menankypoo - This doesn't appear to be a part of Ev, at least in the political sense. Since a chapter of Pirates that's set there is called "Meanwhile, in Ev," however, I'm including it. This hidden kingdom, with its entrance in the same mountains that provide the border of the Kingdom of Rinkitink, is a dull, faded, quiet place. The people don't talk at all, instead communicating by flashing messages on their foreheads. Most of them have no ambition whatsoever, and when their king began to get ideas of glory placed in his head by Clocker, his devious wise man with a cuckoo clock head, the people pushed the king into the ocean and locked up the Clock Man. They accepted Ruggedo, was was at that point under the spell of the Silence Stone, as their new ruler, but it was during his reign that a band of pirates took over the country and threw all of its inhabitants into the ocean. The Menankypoos are apparently well-nigh indestructible, however, and after the trouble with Ruggedo and the pirates was sorted out, Ozma restored them and their old king. One Oziana story (I forget exactly which one at the moment, but I know it was one of the Great Detective tales) mentions an Iron Rush in Menankypoo, so it's possible that the country is rich in iron ore.

Dooners - People who live in the sand dunes on the seashore, the Dooners are made of sand, with glowing green eyes and beach grass hair. They're known to be hostile to strangers, tying them up with seaweed and pelting them with sand.

Some Summit - The home of Bitty Bit, a brownie-like seer and friend of Jinnicky who lives in a castle with a shooting tower. The tower has a stretching substance holding together its stones, and is able to fly wherever Bitty desires. The Seer of Some Summit played a major role in saving Oz from King Skamperoo.

Zerons - Frigid creatures that live on a snow-capped mountain, and freeze anyone who comes into their territory.

Tickley Bender - The watery head of a river, who lives up to his name by tickling anyone who comes into his water. The river itself is lined with weeping willows, and has one section with bubbles that each speak one word and then burst.

Crazy Bones - Live bones with their own little arms, who administer electric shocks with their elbows. While annoying, the bones did help the wooden whale Davy Jones to cross a dry section of the country, increasing his speed with their electrical power.

Hightown - This city is actually located in the sky above a section of Ev that happens to have no gravity. Despite its magical properties and the fact that its inhabitants consider it the best place in the world, Hightown is actually rather uninteresting. It does, however, have a flower that can forecast the weather, and the people sometimes wade in rainclouds.

Valley of Romance - Now officially known as the Valley of Love, this place was once concerned only with putting on plays, using hypnotized visitors as actors. One look at the Love Magnet changed all this, and King Ticket and Queen Curtain instead decided to focus on learning various arts and crafts, and freed the prisoners.

Fairy Beavers - When we first see these fairy animals in John Dough and the Cherub, they live on the Isle of Mifkets. In Shaggy Man, however, they have a kingdom beneath Ev. Jack Snow never specifies whether this is a different tribe or the beavers ended up moving for some reason, but I tend to prefer the latter explanation. The King of the Fairy Beavers, who had earlier assisted John Dough and Jacquelin's family in escaping the Mifkets, plays a significant role in Snow's book by helping the Shaggy Man and his friends reach Oz, and conquering Conjo with some help from the Water of Oblivion.

Incidentally, I believe Silver Princess is the only canonical Oz book to refer to the people of Ev as "Evians," but I don't think we see any other alternatives, so I regard this as the accurate term. I assume it's not pronounced like the brand of bottled water, though.
Tags: books, oz

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