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Police in Nottinghamshire, England, are on the lookout for the thief who swiped the sign for the sleepy village of Gotham. And while they don’t have any suspect, they are looking in the direction of Batman fans.
“It is of little scrap metal value, so it may be more to do with a prank, particularly given the name on it,” police community support officer Anthony Davies told the Nottingham Post. “But it is not a prank because it is going to cost Nottinghamshire County Council money to replace it, so I would ask anyone who knows where the sign is to let us know.”
The village of about 1,600 people draws the occasional Batman fans, who have their photos taken at the sign (never mind that Gotham village is pronounced “goat-em,” not “goth-am”).
The villagers were long famed for the stories of the “Wise Men of Gotham,” which depicted them as slow-witted (although they were really only feigning stupidity). Because of those tales, Washington Irving in his Salmagundi Papers referred to New York City as Gotham, a moniker Bill Finger borrowed — well, he plucked it out of a phone book — for the new name of Dark Knight’s stomping grounds.