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San Serriffe
2021-09-11

Eine Insel, die es nicht gibt.

San Serriffe is a fictional island nation invented for April Fools' Day 1977, by Britain’s Guardian newspaper. It was featured in a seven-page hoax supplement, published in the style of contemporary reviews of foreign countries, commemorating the tenth anniversary of the island’s independence, complete with themed advertisements from major companies. The supplement provided an elaborate description of the nation as a tourist destination and developing economy, but most of its place names and characters were puns and plays on words relating to printing (such as “sans-serif” and names of common fonts). The original idea was to place the island in the Atlantic Ocean near Tenerife, but because of the ground collision of two Boeing 747s there a few days before publication it was moved to the Indian Ocean, near the Seychelles Islands. Because of this late move the authors made San Serriffe a moving island – a combination of coastal erosion on its west side and deposition on the east cause it to move towards Sri Lanka, with which it will eventually collide, at about 1.4 km/year. San Serriffe was one of the most famous and successful hoaxes of recent decades; it has become part of the common cultural heritage of literary humour, and a secondary body of literature has been derived from it. The nation was reused for similar hoaxes in 1978, 1980 and 1999. In April 2009 the geography, history and culture of San Serriffe featured heavily in the paper’s cryptic crossword.

Quelle: San Serriffe