This article is about the country of Klatch. For the continent also called Klatch, see Klatch (continent)
Klatch is a fictional country in Terry Pratchett's Discworld series of fantasy novels. It is a large multi-ethnic empire rimwards to turnwise of the Circle Sea. It resembles medieval Arabic states, and has a political system similar to the Ottoman Empire. Its capital is Al Khali (popularly known as 'the Gateway to the mysterious continent of Klatch'), and it includes outlying regions such as Hersheba and Syrrit. Klatch is a commercial rival of Ankh-Morpork — the book Jingo depicts a brief war between the two; but it is also Morpork's closest source of 'foreign' (the Sto Plains not really being considered foreign). There is some cultural mistrust between the Sto Plains and Klatch, as evidenced by the phrase "Pardon my Klatchian" upon speaking a rude word.
Despite the tendency of Morporkians to see Klatchians as savages, Jingo makes clear that Klatchians are technologically and scientifically far in advance of the Sto Plains. It is said that the Klatchians had 15 words for assassination before the rest of the world had caught on to the idea of hitting each other with rocks. This situation parallels that which existed between Europe and the Arab world throughout the Middle Ages. The ruler of Klatch is called the Seriph (perhaps a play on caliph and serif). In Sourcery, the Seriph was Creosote, a rather vain and foolish man who was obsessed with poetry. A genie reportedly granted a great fortune to his grandfather, which was more or less squandered by modern times. It is unknown whether Creosote is still Seriph; the Prince Cadram and Prince Khufurah appeared in Jingo, but it is unknown whether they are relatives of Creosote. The "Klatchian Foreign Legion" parodies French military activities in North Africa. The name is probably a play on "coffee klatsch"; a recognition of its most famous export, Klatchian coffee. The principal deity of Klatch is Offler, a crocodile-headed god.
Al Khali has been described by Rincewind as "like Ankh, only with sand instead of mud". It is bisected by the Tsort River. The city is noted for its wind, which blows from the vast deserts of Klatch, and has been described as "a gentle but persistent breeze". Notable features of the city include:
- The Rhoxie: The Seriph of Al Khali's resplendent palace, in the centre of the city. Surrounded by an artificial paradise, it contains the Seriph's harem and courtiers. However, it was heavily damaged during the events of Sourcery, and it is unknown whether it was repaired.
- The soak: A bazaar highly spoken of by Cohen the Barbarian. A series of alleys, frequented by the criminal underclass.
- The Temple Frescoes: Famous frescoes of people involved in sexual acts. Tours leave hourly from the Square of 967 Delights (Khalians are meticulous about things that interest them).
A strong, nearly magical coffee, brewed in Klatch and drunk only by the initiated in very small cups. Klatchian coffee has a strong sobering effect, bringing the drinker "to the other side of sobriety". This state of sobriety is referred to as knurd ("drunk" spelled backwards), which dispels the soft pink cushions of sobriety and allows the world to be seen as it really is. To counteract the effects of Klatchian coffee, in Klatch it is drunk with Orakh (a very violent alcoholic bevarage made by mixing scorpion venom and cactus sap and fermenting it in the sun for several weeks). After a few screams, a lie down and a stiff drink, the occasional drinker will try never to be "knurd" again.
Klatchian coffee is (presumably) intended as an exaggerated version of Turkish coffee.