Entwhistle to Endicott. Any reason why?

GricerGricer Altrincham, UK Fan
Hi all. First post on here so forgive me if this has been discussed before. I used the search tool and there was no trace, though.

I'm in the process of re-reading the Poirot stories & books, in more or less the order of publication, and I've just re-read After The Funeral and Hickory Dickory Dock in that order.

At the end of the latter book Poirot visits a lawyer named Endicott, who makes reference to having received Poirot's help in solving the 'Abernethy business'. Assuming that this refers to the Abernethie family in After The Funeral, despite the slightly different spelling, surely the lawyer's name should be Entwhistle rather than Endicott.

Has anyone any idea why this re-naming occurred? Surely Mrs Christie wouldn't have made the change simply by accident, would she?
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Comments

  • taliavishay-arbeltaliavishay-arbel ✭✭✭
    edited September 2016
    It certainly could have been her mistake! In at least one other case in the Agatha Christie Canon, a character changes names - Miss Marple's nephew Raymond has a girlfriend named Joyce, a painter, in "The Tuesday night club", who becomes "Joan" when he is married to her in "Sleeping murder". Such mistakes were quite common at the period before PC's, when serial authors couldn't easily keep track of their characters - in the Miss Silver mystery series by Patricia Wentworth, e.g., Miss Silver's housekeeper is Emma Meadows in some of the books, then becomes Hannah Meadows and then changes back to Emma - actually in one book she starts with one name and ends with the other!  In the "Katy did" young adults series by Susan Coolidge the age difference between Katy and her sister Clover is 2 years in the first book, 1 year in the second and 3 in the third, and there are many more examples.
  • GricerGricer Altrincham, UK Fan
    Ahh... Interesting.

    Are we sure that Joyce and Joan were the same character, though? Raymond may well have a had a thing about artists, and took out a few of them before eventually marrying Joan.

    Even though authors might not have had PCs, surely if they wanted to refer to a character that they had already featured in a published work it wouldn't have been that much trouble to simply refer to that previously published work, would it? I'm no author, but if I was I'd like to think that I could at least manage to do that before I made a fool of myself.

    I was thinking along much more complex lines, such as her basing Entwhistle on a real lawyer, who then objected to it and made sure he wasn't named in a book again.
  • I think AC would have been savvy enough not to use the name of a real person similar to her character! As a matter of fact, she has Mrs. Oliver say in one of her books that she can use a chance encounter with a person to base a character on him, but once she knows the real person she can't use him (the only exception I know for AC is "Murder in Mesopotamia" where at least 4 characters are based on real people, as you can see in her autobiography). As for "making a fool of myself" - people make mistakes! Authors as well as others. Changing a name between books is a relatively minor mistake (as I pointed out above, one author changed a character's name within a book). In one of Josephine Tey's books, two police officers are discussing detective novels, and one says his sergeant counted 92 "howlers" in one book. While I've never gotten that far, I have caught 5 or 6 mistakes in one book - and sometimes in books by well known and respecter authors! In addition to the examples I gave above, this week I reread "Oxford Blood", a mystery story by Antonia Fraser. The main plot is based on blood groups (there is a question of whether the hero can be the biological son of the people who brought him up) and the book is absolutely full of errors about blood groups! To give one example, she says that if one parent is type "A" and one is type "B" the children are necessarily type "AB" (actually, unless we know that the parents' genotype is AA and BB - which we can only be sure of if all four grandparents were AB - the children of an A and a B parent can be A, B, AB or O). Luckily, though there are many mistakes of this kind in the book, they don't affect the main plot, but obviously this respected author didn't do her homework properly. The most painful "howler" I came across, however, was in "The Wrong Rite" by Alisa Craig (A.K.A. Charlotte Macleod). During the climax, the grandmother is in two places at once - babysitting her granddaughter at the house, and talking to the constable at the scene of the crime. and then again at her granddaughter's side, telling her parents she gave no trouble! These things definitely happen. What surprises me is that the editors don't catch these things - that is supposed to be part of the editor's job. 
  • edited September 2016
    Another instance where Agatha Christie based one of her characters off a real person was in The Man In The Brown Suit with the character Sir Eustace Pedler based off of Major Ernest Belcher -- he wanted Agatha to use him as a character in one of her novels and she did so. 

    Examples of books where Agatha Christie used chance encounters or real people that she saw from a distance (never actually met or spoke to them) and based them on actual characters were in The Mysterious Affair At Styles with Alfred Inglethorp, The Body In The Library with Conway Jefferson, (she explains this to an introduction to the book) and even Parker Pyne which I recently discovered and here she describes the creation of Parker Pyne in an introduction in the Pyne collection:

    One day, having lunch at a Corner House, I was enraptured by a conversation on statistics going on at a table behind me. I turned my head and caught a vague glimpse of a bald head, glasses, and a beaming smile – I caught sight that is, of Mr. Parker Pyne. I had never thought about statistics before (and indeed seldom think about them now!) but the enthusiasm with which they were being discussed awakened my interest. I was just considering a new series of short stories and then and there I decided on the general treatment and scope, and in due course enjoyed writing them.


    “People in the dark are quite different, aren’t they?”  ― A Murder Is Announced 
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom ✭✭✭✭
    Joyce and Joan are definitely the same Character, I had never noticed the Endecot/Entwistle Descrpency the change is obviously because she forgot, these days a Database or File where she makes a list of names would solve that.
  • . . .  this week I reread "Oxford Blood", a mystery story by Antonia Fraser. The main plot is based on blood groups (there is a question of whether the hero can be the biological son of the people who brought him up) and the book is absolutely full of errors about blood groups! To give one example, she says that if one parent is type "A" and one is type "B" the children are necessarily type "AB" (actually, unless we know that the parents' genotype is AA and BB - which we can only be sure of if all four grandparents were AB - the children of an A and a B parent can be A, B, AB or O). Luckily, though there are many mistakes of this kind in the book, they don't affect the main plot, but obviously this respected author didn't do her homework properly. 
    For someone who writes, that's one of the things that leaves me racked with fear and nervousness. The main thing I want to do when I write my stories which are mainly set in England during the 30's, 40's, or 50's, is to do my homework properly and make sure I get things accurate and correct, or else readers will spot it. It could probably spoil the story for them. 


    “People in the dark are quite different, aren’t they?”  ― A Murder Is Announced 
  • ChristieFanForLife - At least readers of today aren't as familiar with life in the 30's to 50's as with blood groups! At any rate, I assume biology is still being taught in schools... But really, the only way is to be your own detective (i.e. researcher) and spend hours in the libraries. And don't forget to check up on physical facts (e.g. the time of sunset at the season of the year you are writing about, if a scene depends on natural light or darkness, or what flowers bloom in what season). 
  • edited September 2016
    ChristieFanForLife - At least readers of today aren't as familiar with life in the 30's to 50's as with blood groups! At any rate, I assume biology is still being taught in schools... But really, the only way is to be your own detective (i.e. researcher) and spend hours in the libraries. And don't forget to check up on physical facts (e.g. the time of sunset at the season of the year you are writing about, if a scene depends on natural light or darkness, or what flowers bloom in what season). 
    Research is not one of my strong suits because it's hard to find books/resources (such as newspapers) in the library concerning the 30's to the 50's and getting a good portrait of the times. And there's so much on the internet and it's easy to obtain information that isn't accurate. I would love to see diaries of regular common people in the past and get a solid grasp and perspective and/or see a map of England and certain provinces and see how long it would take to get to a particular location to another (a modern map don't do). I would like to get a good feel of England and the provinces and the train stations -- in other words, I would like to use real locations sometimes instead of making up fictional villages all the time. I don't have the opportunity or the luxury to visit England and soak up the local color. 


    “People in the dark are quite different, aren’t they?”  ― A Murder Is Announced 
  • PetePete UK Investigator
    Interestingly the book 'Who's who in Agatha Christie' lists  Endecot/Entwistle as two separate characters.
    "You didn't complain or say it was my fault. It was at that moment I began to think you were wonderful."
  • Pete, I looked for a book named "Who's who in Agatha Christie" and couldn't find it. Is that the title? Or is it an article in a book?
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