List of revisions in the Tale of the Eternal Champion series
In considering what is a revision and what is not a basic assumption is made that a revision is a deliberate change to the text by the author, while omissions and typographical errors are not. For an example of the latter, see the missing lines from the end of Elric at the End of Time in the Millennium hardback and trade paperback editions of Legends from the End of Time.
According to John Davey, Moorcock's co-editor on the series:
"Generally, speaking, the White Wolf editions have the more definitive texts, having (in most instances) received an additional and thorough copy-edit. The W.W. trade-sized paperbacks are also very slightly more definitive than the hardcovers, having allowed correction of anything erroneous occurring first time 'round. (This is only approaching substantial in 'Hawkmoon', where the hardcover had a few layout problems.) Also, the 'Stormbringer' novel, in 'Elric: The Stealer Of Souls', was fairly substantially worked on, to ensure inclusion of the best of all previous versions.
The following list is a 'work in progress' and should not currently be considered exhaustive.
- In The Eternal Champion & Phoenix in Obsidian, the name of Von Bek is added to the list of EC incarnations that haunt John Daker's/Erekosë's dreams.
- Renark the Wanderer becomes Renark von Bek in The Sundered Worlds, published in the White Wolf edition of The Eternal Champion. He is also named as such in the new framing sequences for the The Roads Between the Worlds omnibus, which were original to that volume, so are not revisions as such.
- Moorcock added a new passage before the 'Prologue' of The Sundered Worlds called 'Limbo', as a bridge with the preceding novel, The Eternal Champion:
I dreamed I lay in a dark valley and all around me were the titanic forms of archangels. I heard distant voices and I knew these supernatural warriors were chanting a litany...
- "We are the Warriors at the End of Time. We are the lost, the last, the unkind. We are the Warriors on the Edge of Time and we're tired, we're tired... We're tired of making love..."
And in my dream I walked away from those vast beings and came at length to a new place where the unshaded force of a star beat against my eyes and I saw one who was myself and not myself.
I dreamed this dream many times in those years when I clung to my good fortune and my love with a joy mixed with trepidation. I knew that it must all inevitably end.
The man of whom I dreamed was almost my double, but I lacked his skills, his experience or his faith. He was a mukhamir, an adept - an expert player in the great Game of Time. He ranged the mighty highways of interstellar space and had a bizarre, momentous destiny. His full name was Renark von Bek, Count of the Rim...
I was in a place of roads--silver spiderwebs of roads which wound between all the Realms of the multiverse...
- In 'The Pleasure Garden of Felipe Sagittarius', the eponymous character's name is discovered to be an alias for Klosterheim, while Minos Aquilinas becomes Minos von Bek and the victim Stalin becomes Djugashvili. The sequence where Minos and Hitler discuss Sagittarius in Kurt Weill's bar is slightly rewritten to accommodate the revelation of Sagittarius' true identity:
'What do you know about this Sagittarius?' I asked.
Hitler shrugged. 'Very little. His name, of course, is an invention.'
Weill turned up again behind the bar and asked us if we wanted more beer. We said we didn't.
'Sagittarius?' Weill spoke up brightly. 'Are you talking about that crank Klosterheim?'
'He's a crank, is he?' I said. The name rang a distant bell.
'That's not fair, Kurt,' Hitler said. 'He's a brilliant man, a biologist---'
'Klosterheim was thrown out of his job because he was insane!'
- In The Jewel in the Skull, Book Two, Chapter 6 the previously 'fallen body of Mygel Holst' was revised as 'the wounded body of Mygel Holst'. This is significant because Holst reappears alive and well in The Sword of the Dawn.
- The infamous 'bullet scene' in The Sword of the Dawn, Book One, Chapter 15 was excised from the White Wolf edition of Hawkmoon in order to remove a hanging plot thread in the original text - 'What did D'Averc intend to do with the ancient bullet he found?' - that was never followed up. The scene was also omitted in the Millennium mass-market paperback edition.
"...We cannot afford to rest here now, D'Averc. We must press on at once."
D'Averc nodded. "A shame." He stooped and picked up a small object he had seen on the floor, placing it in his tattered jerkin. "I think I recognise this."
"What is it?"
"It could be one of the charges used for the old guns they used," D'Averc said. "If so, it will be useful."
"But you have no old gun!"
"One does not always need one!" said D'Averc mysteriously.
They ran back down the ramp to the entrance of the tower.
- Lieutenant Allsop becomes Lt. Begg, Capt. Korzeniowski becomes Captain Quelch, Johnson becomes Steeton and Egan reverts to Reagan in The Warlord of the Air.
- Miss Una Persson becomes a 'Mrs'; President Fred Penfield becomes President Beesley and Manuel O'Bean's unnamed mother becomes Esmé Piatnitski in The Land Leviathan.
- The Steel Tsar is extensively rewritten in the A Nomad of the Time Streams omnibus from Book Two, Chapter 7 onwards with appearances from M. Zenith now added. Elsewhere Lieutenant Allsop becomes Lt. Begg (again), Shawcross becomes Underwood, Greaves becomes Nye, Harry Birchington becomes 'Peewee' Wilson, and Lieutenant Pyatnitski becomes Lieutenant Mitrofanovitch while the engineer Sikorski becomes Pyatnitski. The Russian Captain Leonov becomes the Polish Capt. Korzeniowski.
- Professor Faustaff becomes Doctor Faustaff, Gordon Ogg becomes Gordon Begg, and Steifflomeis becomes Klosterheim in The Wrecks of Time as published in The Roads Between the Worlds omnibus.
- The final chapter of The Wrecks of Time is changed from the original "The Golden Bridges" to "The Golden Roads", and whereas before Moorcock had described "bridges of light between the worlds" at John Davey's suggestion these were changed to "roads of light...":
"That's what they are," Faustaff said in realization. "They're roads -- roads that we can travel to reach the other simulations. See..." he pointed to an object the hung in the sky above their heads, rapidly passing as the world turned on its axis -- "there's one end of ours. We could reach it in a plane, then we could walk across, if we had a lifetime to spare! But we can build transport that will travel the roads in a few days! These worlds are like islands in the same lake and those roads link us all together."
- Alan & Simon Powys become Alain & Simon von Bek in 'The Winds of Limbo' as published in the The Roads Between the Worlds omnibus.
- Clovis Marca is renamed Clovis Becker in The Shores of Death as published in the The Roads Between the Worlds omnibus.
- Much of the opening to The Black Corridor is repeated, pretty much verbatim, in Chapter Three of The Distant Suns. Since the latter novel followed the former in the Sailing to Utopia omnibus most of this passage was excised from The Distant Suns in the White Wolf and Millennium mass-market paperback editions. It remains in the Millennium hardcover and trade paperback editions.
- In The Dancers at the End of Time, Amelia Underwood's maiden name was found to change between The Hollow Lands (where her father was Reverend Mr Vernon) & The End of All Songs (where she says her maiden name was Ormont). In the White Wolf and Millennium mass-market paperback editions the latter was used throughout.
- Shakey Mo Collier becomes Mo Beck in 'All the Way Round Again' in the Millennium mass-market paperback edition of the The New Nature of the Catastrophe omnibus, as well as in 'A Dead Singer' in the Millennium mass-market paperback edition of the Earl Aubec and Other Stories collection.
- In The Prince with the Silver Hand, Corum's replacement eye & hand keep swapping sides. In the White Wolf Corum: The Prince with the Silver Hand editions these were made the same.
- In Legends from the End of Time, the final chapter of Constant Fire was revised so that rather than flogging Mavis Ming, Emmanuel Bloom uses a 'sweet-smelling liquid' which burns upon contact on her in order to 'free' Mavis. Due to a printing error, only this revised chapter appeared in the Millennium hardcover and trade paperback editions. The full novel was included in the White Wolf hardcover edition, the Millennium mass-market paperback edition, as well as the hardcover and trade paperback editions of the Karl Glogauer omnibus Behold the Man and Other Stories (Phoenix House, 1994).
- Zarozinia's death in the Stormbringer/Elric: The Stealer of Souls omnibuses is restored to a revised version of the scene used in the 1965 fix-up Stormbringer novel rather than the original 1964 version used (with minor revisions) for the 1977 DAW edition.
- The previously unnamed protagonist of 'Crossing into Cambodia' is identified as Bekov in the White Wolf and Millennium mass-market paperback editions of Earl Aubec and Other Stories.
The following are not part of the official 'Tale of the Eternal Champion' series, but were published contemporaneously with it.
- In the Behold the Man and Other Stories omnibus Nestor Makhno, in the Karl Glogauer novel Breakfast in the Ruins, has been 'retconned' into Feodor von Bek. Pyat changes from an old Georgian to a young Ukrainian Jew.
- In Fabulous Harbours, 'The Girl Who Killed Sylvia Blade' was originally 'The Girl Who Killed Sultry Caine', as by 'Hank Janson', in 'Golden Nugget' #9, November 1966. In 'Sylvia Blade', Hank Janson becomes Hank Beck, Bill Holman becomes Bill Hunt, Rudy Markheim becomes Rudy Klosterheim, and Hymie Jonzen becomes Hymie Janson.
- Note: While the 1992 Roc edition of TSW is revised, it isn't the same revision as the WW The Eternal Champion omnibus and Renark's name is unchanged.
- He becomes Sam Begg in The Metatemporal Detective version of the story.
- 'Who' in the original.
- The Fantasy Masterworks edition of The History of the Runestaff uses the revised text, as do the latest Tor Books editions.
- 'Cross' in the original.
- No trade paperback edition of Legends from the End of Time was published by White Wolf due to financial difficulties
- The latter as a 'sop' to readers who were buying the hardcover and/or trade paperback editions in preference to the latter mass-market paperback editions.
- Ike Sinclair in The Metatemporal Detective