Reference Artwork  
Before I started, I had a vague idea of what I wanted to create, based on the description of Detritus the Troll in Terry Pratchett's Discworld books. ("Men at Arms", "Moving Pictures", "Feet of Clay", and most recently, "The Fifth Elephant") A search of the Internet turned up a low resolution scan from an illustrated book, and this became the primary reference image. Further searching of the Amazon.Co.UK turned up several books that did not seem to be available in the U.S. The one that contained the original image was The Pratchett Portfolio by Terry Pratchett, Paul Kidby (Illustrator). The other was the Discworld Diary: 1999 by Terry Pratchett, Stephen Briggs, Paul Kidby (Illustrator).

It was Paul Kidby's illustrations that most closely matched the image I had in mind when I started work on this costume.

Other ideas for additions to the costume, such as his siege crossbow may be created later, influenced by some of the other images found in these books, as well as some selected reference images (also shown here). For example, the Leonardo da Vinci siege crossbow sketch also includes detail for two trigger mechanisms. That could be incorporated into the final prop (for authenticity reasons.)

Image01.gif (31631 bytes)
The "key" reference image of Detritus from The Pratchett Portfolio (ISBN: 0575063483)


A sketch of the Ankh Morpork City Watch members by Paul Kidby.
From Discworld's Ankh-Morpork City Watch Diary 1999 (ISBN: 0575066601)


Detritus with his new weapon of choice. When describing his experience with the more traditional weapons of the watch, it was pointed out that all swords are short swords to a troll, and that he kept breaking the truncheons and long bows.
From Discworld's Ankh-Morpork City Watch Diary 1999 (ISBN: 0575066601)


Paul Kidby artwork is available in many of the Discworld books and Diaries. Cards, posters, sculptures, and even mouse mats (with the Death of Rats, of course) are available on the Paul Kidby Web site. Check out his latest work at
In "Men at Arms" a group of the City Watch enter the Ankh Morpork Armory in search of weapons. Detritus settles on just one - "A triple-stringed 2,000 lb. Carriage-mounted siege crossbow with the double-action windlass." Research on siege crossbows turned up the following illustrations...
A ballista. This displays many of the features, including the windlass (crank mechanism) and being carriage-mounted, hence, the wheels. A sketch by Leonardo da Vinci also includes two different firing mechanisms.

[Back to Valhalla] [Night Watch Index]

Web site images and content is Copyright 2000 Chris Kramer unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved