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August 10th, 2012

August 10th, 2012 published on 39 Comments on August 10th, 2012

Watch out, Mal’s about to brain-think..! Head over to Tumblr if you want to see larger versions of the charcoal sketches, and a slightly bigger version of the page if you want to try deciphering the writing.

Thanks to Robin and Svea for the German, and my husband John for the handwriting!

  • Heh, wouldn’t have helped unless you also had him teach you German, Mal. ; ) –Or does he know German? I know he said they’d been all over Europe… That would be highly ironic if the one who can read didn’t know the language and the one who did couldn’t read it, though that would make the reading aloud option more workable. ^_^;

  • Heh, wouldn’t have helped unless you also had him teach you German, Mal. ; ) –Or does he know German? I know he said they’d been all over Europe… That would be highly ironic if the one who can read didn’t know the language and the one who did couldn’t read it, though that would make the reading aloud option more workable. ^_^;

  • Gilrael

    I can find a small error in his German: it should say “Ich glaube nicht, dass wir ihr vertrauen können.” And the first sentence sounds a bit weird. It’s technically correct but no German would say it like that. It would be better to write: “Etwas stimmt mit Fairbairn nicht.”

    On another note: I simply love this comic, great art, great story and it’s funny. Keep up the good work.

  • Gilrael

    I can find a small error in his German: it should say “Ich glaube nicht, dass wir ihr vertrauen können.” And the first sentence sounds a bit weird. It’s technically correct but no German would say it like that. It would be better to write: “Etwas stimmt mit Fairbairn nicht.”

    On another note: I simply love this comic, great art, great story and it’s funny. Keep up the good work.

  • SulZala

    a few small errors, but eh, he’s no native speaker i guess. (and you aren’t either)
    can’t decipher the word between “ich hab mit” and “kein glück”, though…. :/

    “verschiedene persönlichkeits-konflikt” conflict between differing personalities, huh… but who is he referring to?

    • Thomas

      Kommandanten I believe and I’m pretty sure the conflict must be with the magic guy, Mal and maybe himself. If it was written just before he was captured (that fits right?) I’m thinking it’s a bit about the argument they just had. I’m puzzled about the bit with the broken nose changing the form though, why would he remark that? Just an observant artist type of thing or personality change or are we talking twins, family or what?

      • KomiIsDrawing

        He was just noting it, it’s the first time he’d sketched Mal since he’d been whammed in the nose and he found it interesting as he hadn’t really ever seen a before and after of that sort of thing.

  • SulZala

    a few small errors, but eh, he’s no native speaker i guess. (and you aren’t either)
    can’t decipher the word between “ich hab mit” and “kein glück”, though…. :/

    “verschiedene persönlichkeits-konflikt” conflict between differing personalities, huh… but who is he referring to?

    • Thomas

      Kommandanten I believe and I’m pretty sure the conflict must be with the magic guy, Mal and maybe himself. If it was written just before he was captured (that fits right?) I’m thinking it’s a bit about the argument they just had. I’m puzzled about the bit with the broken nose changing the form though, why would he remark that? Just an observant artist type of thing or personality change or are we talking twins, family or what?

      • He was just noting it, it’s the first time he’d sketched Mal since he’d been whammed in the nose and he found it interesting as he hadn’t really ever seen a before and after of that sort of thing.

        Thanks for the corrections, all, I’ll be changing it later :)

  • mendel

    If he was a competent native Speaker:

    Bäckerei bei Nacht
    Etwas stimmt mit Fairbarn nicht.
    Ich glaube nicht, dass wir Schade vertrauen können.
    Ich habe mit Vorgesetzten kein Glück.
    Vielleicht ist er zu pingelig, aber ein scheint ein guter Mann zu sein.
    Verschiedene Persönlichkeiten – Konflikt – war das Absicht?
    gebrochene Nase – veränderte Form

    And of course the handwriting 100 years ago was such that very few people could read it today, google images for “Sütterlin”.

    • Michael Mair

      Rather: “Etwas stimmt mit Fairbairn nicht; ich glaube nicht, dass wir ihr trauen können. Schade.”

      “Kommandanten” may be what he really wanted to express, depending on his background; this may be right for military, police or fire brigade experience or growing up in certain parts of Germany. Also, “Kommandant” ist the guy (or gal) in charge at one location whereas “Vorgesetzter” usually means only one or a couple steps up in the hierarchy.

      “Vielleicht ist er zu pingelig” telegraphs its English origin. I’d rather go with “Er wirkt ziemlich pingelig, aber scheint ein guter Kerl zu sein” or, a bit closer to the original in the first part, “Er mag etwas zu pingelig sein, aber ist wohl ein guter Kerl.”

      The rest is okay, even though I do not understand at all where the next line is going.

      Abstain from any attempt at correct German of that time, let alone changing to period handwriting (and no, Sütterlin is not the only option), is a very sensible way to go with this. I don’t want to see badly-mangled and badly-corrected 1830s language, orthography, and writing…

      • KomiIsDrawing

        A military term was the one I was groping for, yup :) I’ll correct it when I’ve got time to sit down and untangle all the various responses to formulate the right phrasing..!

        And yes I’m not going for period language, much like I don’t with the English, it’s just a little needlessly complex and probably unnecessary in what is not exactly a historically accurate comic!

      • mendel

        I stand corrected, well done!

        The line about “verschiedene Persönlichkeiten” is just disjointed phrases, not a whole sentence, about the different personalities on the team possibly being chosen to generate conflict? I’m not happy with the translation, “Persönlichkeiten”, “Charaktere”, “Charakterzüge”, “Wesenszüge”? Anyway, I’d correct myself to “gegensätzliche Charaktere – Konflikt – beabsichtigt?”

        • yomi

          I think “war das absichtlich?” works, too, though “beabsichtigt?”, “war das beabsichtigt?” or “war das Absicht?” sound better to my ears.
          And depending on how good orthography and grammar skills you want to give Wolfe, you might use as the second sentence “Ich glaube nicht das wir ihr vertrauen können.” It’s wrong, but forgetting a comma or getting confused with “das”, “dass” (or formerly “daß”) are quiet common mistakes.

          • KWill

            Ah, but what is good orthography? While there’s been plenty of correct statements regarding modern German, let’s not forget that Widdershins takes place in the 1830s, about 40 years before there’s a unified Germany (1871) and 70 years before there’s a unified German orthography (1901). As far as Widdershins follows this world’s history…

  • mendel

    If he was a competent native Speaker:

    Bäckerei bei Nacht
    Etwas stimmt mit Fairbarn nicht.
    Ich glaube nicht, dass wir Schade vertrauen können.
    Ich habe mit Vorgesetzten kein Glück.
    Vielleicht ist er zu pingelig, aber ein scheint ein guter Mann zu sein.
    Verschiedene Persönlichkeiten – Konflikt – war das Absicht?
    gebrochene Nase – veränderte Form

    And of course the handwriting 100 years ago was such that very few people could read it today, google images for “Sütterlin”.

    • Michael Mair

      Rather: “Etwas stimmt mit Fairbairn nicht; ich glaube nicht, dass wir ihr trauen können. Schade.”

      “Kommandanten” may be what he really wanted to express, depending on his background; this may be right for military, police or fire brigade experience or growing up in certain parts of Germany. Also, “Kommandant” ist the guy (or gal) in charge at one location whereas “Vorgesetzter” usually means only one or a couple steps up in the hierarchy.

      “Vielleicht ist er zu pingelig” telegraphs its English origin. I’d rather go with “Er wirkt ziemlich pingelig, aber scheint ein guter Kerl zu sein” or, a bit closer to the original in the first part, “Er mag etwas zu pingelig sein, aber ist wohl ein guter Kerl.”

      The rest is okay, even though I do not understand at all where the next line is going.

      Abstain from any attempt at correct German of that time, let alone changing to period handwriting (and no, Sütterlin is not the only option), is a very sensible way to go with this. I don’t want to see badly-mangled and badly-corrected 1830s language, orthography, and writing…

      • A military term was the one I was groping for, yup :) I’ll correct it when I’ve got time to sit down and untangle all the various responses to formulate the right phrasing..!

        And yes I’m not going for period language, much like I don’t with the English, it’s just a little needlessly complex and probably unnecessary in what is not exactly a historically accurate comic!

      • mendel

        I stand corrected, well done!

        The line about “verschiedene Persönlichkeiten” is just disjointed phrases, not a whole sentence, about the different personalities on the team possibly being chosen to generate conflict? I’m not happy with the translation, “Persönlichkeiten”, “Charaktere”, “Charakterzüge”, “Wesenszüge”? Anyway, I’d correct myself to “gegensätzliche Charaktere – Konflikt – beabsichtigt?”

        • yomi

          I think “war das absichtlich?” works, too, though “beabsichtigt?”, “war das beabsichtigt?” or “war das Absicht?” sound better to my ears.
          And depending on how good orthography and grammar skills you want to give Wolfe, you might use as the second sentence “Ich glaube nicht das wir ihr vertrauen können.” It’s wrong, but forgetting a comma or getting confused with “das”, “dass” (or formerly “daß”) are quiet common mistakes.

          • KWill

            Ah, but what is good orthography? While there’s been plenty of correct statements regarding modern German, let’s not forget that Widdershins takes place in the 1830s, about 40 years before there’s a unified Germany (1871) and 70 years before there’s a unified German orthography (1901). As far as Widdershins follows this world’s history…

  • steelraven

    Really like the work you did on the journal. I seem to be the only one here that doesn’t speak/read German so I’m just as lost as those two.

    • Sanjay Merchant

      Oh, you’re not the only one.

  • steelraven

    Really like the work you did on the journal. I seem to be the only one here that doesn’t speak/read German so I’m just as lost as those two.

    • Sanjay Merchant

      Oh, you’re not the only one.

  • reynard61

    “Watch out, Mal’s about to brain-think..!”

    ‘Sa daynj’rous thing t’ be doin’, Guv! A daynj’rous thing indeed…

  • reynard61

    “Watch out, Mal’s about to brain-think..!”

    ‘Sa daynj’rous thing t’ be doin’, Guv! A daynj’rous thing indeed…

  • Nonesuch

    Wolffe is an amazing man, when you think about it. Strong, artistic and a good, analytical mind. He’s got Fairbairn figured, that’s for sure, and he was on the verge of cracking the trick with the oil or the perfume, or whatever it was that can be applied both to the street lights and Fairbairn’s person.

    • svartalf

      Indeed, he is. Seems to me that we’ve a trio of magic adventurers that work well together if they can realize that they’re good together.

      “Oil” is probably NOT Oil even though that was labelled that in the scene. It’s probably chloroform in a container labelled “Oil”. Ether would be too volatile to use that way and wouldn’t resemble “oil”.

  • Nonesuch

    Wolffe is an amazing man, when you think about it. Strong, artistic and a good, analytical mind. He’s got Fairbairn figured, that’s for sure, and he was on the verge of cracking the trick with the oil or the perfume, or whatever it was that can be applied both to the street lights and Fairbairn’s person.

    • svartalf

      Indeed, he is. Seems to me that we’ve a trio of magic adventurers that work well together if they can realize that they’re good together.

      “Oil” is probably NOT Oil even though that was labelled that in the scene. It’s probably chloroform in a container labelled “Oil”. Ether would be too volatile to use that way and wouldn’t resemble “oil”.

  • SoItBegins

    And now it aaaaaaall comes together.

  • SoItBegins

    And now it aaaaaaall comes together.

  • BaronHaynes

    I don’t know how intentional this was, but I like how the charcoal background behind Ben’s sketch is vertical and constrained, and the one behind Mal’s is more chaotic and cross-hatched.

    • You know, I’m not actually sure if that was on purpose or not myself, it was so long ago! Let’s say it was :D

      • BaronHaynes

        lol, deal. My in-universe theory is now that Wolfe did it subconsciously. ;p

  • The Wing

    I love how Wolfe didn’t draw arms on Ben’s glasses so it just looks like he’s staring at a white line in front of his face.

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