Jamie and Claire: real or fictional?

I think it's interesting to see all the various ways that people have found this blog.  Many of you have come here because you saw the link on Compuserve, or on Diana's new web site, or on another OUTLANDER fan-site. Some of you follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or various RSS feeds.  But I also get a fair number of hits every day from people using Google and other search engines.

This morning I happened to be looking at the site that tracks usage statistics for my blog, and I noticed that someone had visited (briefly) as a result of a Bing search on "jamie and claire fraser fictional or real".

Well, I'll be honest with you; my first reaction on seeing that was to burst out laughing. I mean, it's one thing to say that these characters seem like real people -- and I have said that myself, many times! -- but seriously, how could you not notice you were reading fiction?!?

On the other hand....maybe Jamie, Claire, et al., are indeed real people, just living in an alternate universe where time-travel is possible?

Maybe there really is a time-travel gene, and the people who mapped the human genome a few years ago just haven't figured out what its purpose is, yet.

Maybe those who have traveled through the stones have just been very, very quiet about it. <g>

And consider:
  • Eric Linklater's book about the Jacobites, THE PRINCE IN THE HEATHER, is real, including the quote about the "Fraser of the Master of Lovat's regiment" who survived Culloden. (Look here.)
  • Andrew Bell really did print the first edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica in Edinburgh between 1768 and 1771, while Jamie Fraser was in America.

  • The Bethnal Green tube station disaster in London in 1943 (in which Roger's mother was killed) is a real historical event.  It's not difficult to imagine that Roger was there, as a small child, among the survivors.

So, what do you think? Are Jamie, Claire, and the rest real or fictional? Does it matter? All opinions welcome, whether you want to be serious about this or not. <g>

For myself, I'm very entertained by the idea that Jamie and Claire do (did?) really exist. But I'd be perfectly happy if Black Jack Randall and Stephen Bonnet did not. <g>


Amie said...

No, I don't really think that they are real, I mean as the Claire and Jamie that they are in the books (I don't believe in time travel for one thing). But, yes, I think Diana has so tightly woven fact and fiction that one could think that they were "based on true events" or something. She has done an amazing job of blurring that line. I could see there really being a tale of the Dunbonnet, for example, or a WWI English nurse turned 1960's doctor named Claire.

Jaymie said...

WHAATTT, it's fiction??!!? They aren't real?!!

Karen Henry said...

Hey, I just wanted to see what everybody else thinks. :-) Or maybe I'm just trying to stir up some controversy to start the week?

Figured this would at least get a reaction out of people <evil grin>


Jo said...

I'm a history student and I must admit I keep having the ridiculous urge to search for them. Whenever I come across clan fraser/lord lovat references my heart skips a beat and seeing the clan stone at culloden really got to me. I KNOW it's fiction, but the skill of Diana is to make them so wonderfully three dimensional and convincing!. It's madness I tell you!!

Cynthia H. said...

Well...I prefer to think that they're real. *grin*

Kristin M. said...

Fictional, unfortunately. Jamie is just too wonderful to be real.


slfisher said...

I hope in the next concordance she includes more of the actual historical information about people in the books.

Debbie N. said...

They're not real? You've got to be kidding!
Seriously, the story is so well done with the historical facts you can imagine that Jamie and Claire are real. They are certaily real to me. Jamie and Claire both have their flaws but I love their story anyway. Their flaws are one of the reasons they seem so real.


Karen Henry said...


"Their flaws are one of the reasons they seem so real."

Yes, exactly, and I've said so myself many times.


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