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 Post subject: Karl May's Australian connection
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2007 1:50 pm 
Karl May didn't get to write an adventure story set in Australia, however, he does mention the island continent and its inhabitants a few times; in this piece it is 'Sir David Lindsay'.

In Karl May's unique promotional piece 'Joys And Agonies Of Being Karl May' (Engl tr), May describes how a stranger by the name of Kraft forces entry into his 'Villa Shatterhand':

quote:
...(Kraft) I want to speak of a certain David Lindsay for example.”
...(May) “Lindsay?” I’m all ears. “You know him?”
“Sure do! You know where he is right about now?”
“No, unfortunately not. He went to Australia on my suggestion to cross the mainland on camels, has brought the most difficult expedition to a happy ending, as was reported in all large newspapers, and found in the process not only Gold but, what I deem of more importance, very respectable coal fields. Where he is located at present, I do not know.”
“Therefore you have before you the right man to inform you, because during the overland trek I was with him and also later remained in his company for some time. When I prepared to travel to Germany a few months ago, he asked me to visit you and deliver a letter from him.”
“A letter from my old Lindsay? This is an extraordinarily happy occasion for me! Do you have it on you?
“Yes, in the bag. I only climbed the ladder to give you the paper as soon as possible, even before your return home, Sir!”


Last edited by Marlies on Sun Oct 05, 2008 1:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 11:25 am 
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Joined: Sun May 20, 2007 12:05 pm
Posts: 168
Location: U.S.A.
Reading your message, I wondered if there were camels available in Australia in the 19th century. Of course, May’s research was generally impeccable; but I had a look on the internet and found this very interesting account:

http://64.233.169.104/search?q=cache:LVHY8VXOnisJ:camelfarm.com/camels/camels_australia.html+camels+in+australia&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

Note that this is Google’s cached version of the page. The actual page—

http://camelfarm.com/camels/camels_australia.html

—was not working when I tried it; it may be defunct.

As for gold and coal: there were gold rushes in 19th century Australia; and Australia is by far the world’s largest exporter of coal.

Marlies, that is a beautiful place you live in! :)


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 12:14 pm 
try: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_feral_camel

good info on the Australian Camel. You'll notice there is also the >>>elite Bishari riding camels of North Africa and Arabia<<< which Karl May names as the "Bischarinhedjihn" - the noblest of the camel breeds. Kara Ben Nemsi would have felt right at home in the 'red centre'.


Last edited by Marlies on Sun Oct 05, 2008 1:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 30, 2007 9:52 am 
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Joined: Sun May 20, 2007 12:05 pm
Posts: 168
Location: U.S.A.
Marlies, your information link is superb (and much better than the one I provided :oops: :wink: )! Thanks for posting it. I confess I was very surprised to learn of the history of camels in Australia, though given the nature of the country it makes sense in retrospect.

Actually, the aerial photographs of your region do show its hilly nature. This is particularly true of the first one, which shows a larger area.


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