Karl May Wiki

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In his books, Karl May often used story telling style which in the literature world is called The First Person View. In this style, the narrator is one of the characters in the story. In the case of Karl May, the narrator is the main character of the story. Thus, the narrator always calls himslef with "I".

Because of the use of this style, readers often think that the main character is Karl May himself. Karl May also reacted by admitting it and said: "I am Old Shatterhand", even made photographs as Old Shatterhand and Kara Ben Nemsi.

The following is some names used by Karl May in his stories:

  1. Old Shatterhand, the nickname given to the character named Charley.
  2. Charley, the main character in Winnetou Series.
  3. Scharlih, the name used by Winnetou to call Charley.
  4. Kara Ben Nemsi, the name used by Charley when he travelled to the Middle East.

The character Old Shatterhand/Kara Ben Nemsi was depicted as a small statured man but has a very powerful punch which could make an adult man unconcious with just one strike. That is why he received the nickname "Old Shatterhand" (the hand that shatters). He also has two very powerful rifles, Henry Rifle and The Bear Hunter Rifle. Other than that, he also a good marksman, a good horse rider, and the most important is he have the cleverness that could concieve many clever ideas to solve various problems.

The Old Shatterhand character does not like to kill human being. He only kills if he was forced to kill. He prefers to solve problems by cleverness than force and always advicing other people to do the same, including Winnetou, his best friend.

See Also[]


  • Menjelajah Negeri Karl May, by Pandu Ganesa, published by Pustaka Primatama, 2004 (ISBN 979973763-X).

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