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Oh, dear, dates - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Oh, dear, dates
JKR dropped two weeks somewhere.


What is it about the end of the books having vague timing. We're doing fine with March. It's March 1, then a week passing is mentioned, then another week passing. March 15-ish next. Then it's mentioned that the next weekend (March 22ish) is "a fortnight" before Apparition exams. Which are on April 21. Unless the wizarding world uses the word "fortnight" rather badly, there's another fortnight in there that's missing.

Given that the appearance of Tonks happens while Ron and Hermione are in Hogsmeade, I'm inclined to think that that the date is close to the full moon, which would be the March 22 date that year--she's worried about the werewolf attack, apparently on the Montgomery boy. But that means that it's four weeks before the test. And neither date would allow for twelve weekly Apparition lessons starting in mid-March, unless said lessons continued after the tests for some reason.

Brain-thumping...

Working up from the Apparition test day, which is nailed down, I think I can nail the Ravenclaw/Gryffindor match at Saturday May 11--there's a fortnight of good practices, then Harry gets caught doing Sectumsempra "a few days before" the match, which is Saturday, so two weeks, plus probably another week for those days. I got confused because she talked about "balmy days through May, but I think that's got to be early May, because he talks about going out with Ginny for "a few weeks" before mentioning that "Ron's patience wasn't to be tested as they moved into June."

Just sharing my difficulty, and truly loving the Lexicon just now.
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Comments
phylogenetics From: phylogenetics Date: July 21st, 2005 10:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think Rowling just isn't that nitpicky with things like dates, numbers and class schedules. She certainly plays fast and loose with all of them. I wonder if she reverts to the Lexicon when writing her books...
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 21st, 2005 10:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
She probably doesn't need to, since she's not trying to square them with anything. :)
darreldoomvomit From: darreldoomvomit Date: July 21st, 2005 11:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
she actually mentioned in an interview or on her website or somewhere (maybe when the lexicon was her site of the month) that she does use it when checking facts occassionaly.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 21st, 2005 11:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, definitely--I would, too!--but she can't use it for timelines of her current year to see if she's contradicting canon, since, er, she's creating it. ;)
leelastarsky From: leelastarsky Date: July 22nd, 2005 01:14 am (UTC) (Link)
Fern! Run, don't walk!
http://www.livejournal.com/users/caladan_dd/
Remus/Tonks art to die for!!
kizmet_42 From: kizmet_42 Date: July 22nd, 2005 01:55 am (UTC) (Link)
I wasn't trying to sketch out any sort of timeline in my mind, but I remember thinking the same thing when reading: this doesn't make sense, timewise.
disturbed_kiwi From: disturbed_kiwi Date: July 22nd, 2005 03:38 am (UTC) (Link)
Hi there, this isn't realted or naything but I had a question.

You're a USAnian Librarian Right? So people ask you if you have books from vague plots right?

Cause I remember reading a couple of books that I'm fairly sure were American when I was young and I'd like to identify them now...

The first one had a kid travelling cross country to get to a particular baseball game where the crowd got bats and he wanted to get his signed. The cross country trip has many obstacles, at one point he visists a mint, and it turns out that the game was postponed so he makes it anyway.

The other was a story about a bunch of boys who discover a terrorist plot to put some sort of chemical in the towns milk supply. Actually, thats a ruse, they plan to poison the water.
One of the boys dad restores car as a cover for being an undercover cop. Thats important. Also the boys manage to sneak onto the island lair in the middle of the city bay of the bad guy but get caught and then escape.

So... Any idea what these books were?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 22nd, 2005 04:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Hmm, neither sounds at all familiar to me--do you remember how old the characters were? (With anything less than a Harry Potter sort of deal, my particular library tends to make a sort of arbitrary cut between Children's and Young Adults' based on the age of the main characters.) I can run it by some colleagues. We have been known to answer such questions. (My proudest moment was finding a book identified by a patron as being orange and "something about business.")
eir_de_scania From: eir_de_scania Date: July 23rd, 2005 12:43 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm impressed. The sixth book is out and people *still* expect JKR to make a consistent timeline! ;-)

My personal theory is that those weeks disappeared into the same black time-hole that swallowed most of my summer holidays. Four whole weeks just can't go by that fast... it must be dark magic at work!

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