| || Torpeda czasu |
English title: Time Torpedo (translated from Czech)
by Antoni Słonimski
First publication: circa 1924
Torpeda czasu is important enough to list even though I’ve read only summaries, I’ve never found a translation, and I’m uncertain about the date. The notes accompanying this particular cover indicate a 1923 publication date, but elsewhere the date of 1924 is common, and Wikipedia has 1926. Never mind!
The short novel’s heroes—Professor Pankton and his beautiful daughter Haydnee, historian Tolna, and journalist Hersey—set out from the year 2123 to change the Napoleonic Wars, starting with the French Revolution and aiming to fix matters so that mankind can advance intellectually without the hindrence of war. But the outcome, I am told, is even more miserable than the original bloody history.
Should I ever track down a copy, I shall need help from my Polish colleagues in computer science to translate the story to English.
Nie zapominajcie, że to Francuzi, najwaleczniejszy naród europejski, że to są ludzie, których brawura i dzielność oślepia.
[Do not forget that the French, bravest among all the European nationalities, are a people blinded by their very own braggadocio and past prowess.]
| || The Man Who Mastered Time |
by Ray Cummings
First publication: Argosy, 12 Jul to 9 Aug 1924
At a meeting of the Scientific Club, a chemist and his son, Loto, describe how they were able to view a captive woman in the future, so now Loto is going to use his time machine to rescue her.
“Time,” said George, “why I can give you a definition of time. It’s what keeps everything from happening at once.”
—from the opening line of the book, although Cummings wrote a similar line in Chapter 5 of his earlier work, The Girl in the Golden Atom (in the same setting of the Scientific Club), which had no time travel, but only different rates of time passage.