is a series of works, mostly short stories, by Poul Anderson
. They take place in a universe where the resolution to the Grandfather Paradox
is that you now exist without ever have had a father, and the Time Police
relentlessly works to keep time nevertheless on the same path — while ruthlessly expurgating futures, filled with living beings, that do not conform to it. Doing this often requires the sacrifice of time travelers or those they love.
Most of the stories feature Manse Everard, a 20th-century American and Unattached agent, as the main character, or as a secondary one. Many crucial incidents feature The Greatest History Never Told
, such as the Punic Wars
- "Time Patrol" (1955)
- "Brave to be a King" (1959)
- "Gibraltar Falls" (1975)
- "The Only Game in Town" (1960)
- "Delenda Est" (1955)
- "Ivory, and Apes, and Peacocks" (1983)
- "The Sorrow of Odin the Goth" (1983)
- "Star of the Sea" (1991)
- The Year of the Ransom (1988)
- The Shield of Time (1990)
- "Death and the Knight" (1995)
- Above Good and Evil: The Danellians
- Always Save the Girl: In "Delenda Est".
- Ancient Astronauts: Except with time travelers.
- The Atoner: Harpagus in "Brave To Be A King"
- Bittersweet Ending: Typically.
- Blue Blood: Deidre in "Delenda Est".
- Born in the Wrong Century: Everard derides such people in his own century while back in Dark Age Europe.
- Briar Patching: Manse warns the Mongols that the distilled liquors are too strong for them. They disagree and find out the hard way that he wasn't kidding.
- Children Are Innocent: Deidre's plea in "Delenda Est".
- The Chosen One: Invoked in "Brave To Be A King" to restore history
- Color-Coded Patrician: Invoked in "Ivory, and Apes, and Peacocks"
- Creepy Crows: "Delenda Est" has them flying over the battlefield.
- Culture Clash: All those eras
- Demythtification: Literally in "Brave To Be A King"
- Dirty Business: Several things done to keep the time line in order.
- Distressed Dude: Scipios in "Delenda Est"
- Dreaming of Things to Come: In "Brave To Be King" used to explain an infanticide
- Exposed to the Elements: In "Delenda Est", the use is derided
- Fear of Thunder: Mongols are allowed this.
- Fish out of Water: Deirdre in "Delenda Est"
- For Want of a Nail: Carefully explained as not a problem — more major changes are needed.
- God Guise: Used repeatedly
- The Greatest History Never Told: Some odd eras are used. Such as ancient Persia.
- Home Sweet Home: Many members of the Patrol have more than a touch of this.
- In Harm's Way: All members of the Patrol have some of this.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: In "Brave To Be A King"
- Jade-Colored Glasses: Manse admits to them.
- Lady Land: or era — the Matriarchies.
- Lies to Children: Or rather, to Babylonians.
- Light Is Good: Invoked in the Persian setting of "Brave To Be A King"
- Love Triangle: In the Back Story of "Brave To Be A King"
- Macguffin: the chest in "Time Patrol"
- Make Wrong What Once Went Right: Constantly
- Meaningful Rename: In "Gibraltar Falls"
- The Men First: In "The Only Game In Town"
- Moses in the Bullrushes: in "Brave To Be A King" twisted
- Murder the Hypotenuse: A temptation in "Brave To Be A King"
- Ontological Inertia: Temporal inertia makes it hard to change the past — including changing it back.
- The Reveal: In "Delenda Est" that time was tampered with.
- Sacred Hospitality: In "Time Patrol"
- Set Right What Once Went Wrong: Possible. But dangerous.
- Sherlock Holmes: Unnamed but identifiable in "Time Patrol"
- Street Urchin: In "Ivory, and Apes, and Peacocks"
- Take That: Musings about the "noble Nordic"
- Talk About the Weather: In the Dark Ages
- They Do: In "Gibraltar Falls"
- Thicker Than Water: In "Delenda Est", why the meddlers could take out both father and son.
- Time Machine: The members of the Patrol use vehicles ranging from one- or two-person motorcycle-like "time scooters" to larger, multi-passenger time transports.
- Time Travel
- Time Travel Tense Trouble: Averted by inventing a language, Temporal, with more tenses.
- Timey-Wimey Ball: All the changes. . . .
- Tricked Out Time: Features such wonders and abuse of the self-consistency principle that when a man sees his lover falling off a cliff, he turns his head, so that he doesn't see her hit bottom and can come back and rescue her later.
- Victorian Britain: A good chunk of the setting in "Time Patrol"
- Will Not Tell a Lie: Persians in "Brave To Be A King"
- You Can't Go Home Again: Deirdre in "Delenda Est"
- You Will Be Beethoven: Or Cyrus the Great. Or Odin.