Jack Vance

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Jack Vance

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25 Quotations from Jack Vance

aircar n. 1950 J. Vance Dying Earth (1977) 97 Three air-cars rested on the terrace, and the metal was as bright, the glass as clear, the enamel as vivid as if the cars had just dropped from the sky. They went to the nearest; Ulan Dhor pressed the entry button, and the dome slid back with a thin dry hiss of friction. The interior was like that of the other car—a long cushioned seat, a globe mounted on a rod, a number of switches. The cloth of the seat crackled with age as Ulan Dhor prodded it with his hand, and the trapped air smelt very stale… Cautiously he touched the switches, ready to throw them back at any dangerous manifestation. The dome snapped over their heads; relays thousands of years old meshed, cams twisted, shafts plunged home. The air-car jerked, lofted up into the red and dark blue sky. Ulan Dhor grasped the globe, found how to turn the boat, how to twist the nose up or down. This was pure joy, intoxication—wonderful mastery of the air! It was easier than he had imagined. It was easier than walking. He tried all the handles and switches, found how to hover, drop, brake. He found the speed handle and pushed it far over, and the wind sang past the air-boat.
Callistonian n. 1946 J. Vance Planet of Black Dust in Startling Stories Summer 72/1 Holderlin turned. The cook had disappeared. ‘Farjoram!’ he cried. Farjoram!’ Holderlin ran to find him and at last discovered the fuzzy-skinned little Callistonian huddled in his cabin, red eyes bulging in great terror. There was foam at his mouth.
countergravity n. 1950 J. Vance Dying Earth 87 He knew lore of all ages, secrets of fire and light, gravity and counter-gravity, the knowledge of superpsychic numeration, metathasm, corolopsis.
earthgirl n. 1945 J. Vance World-Thinker in Thrilling Wonder Stories Summer 40/2 Where is the Earth-girl?
earthgirl n. 1955 J. Vance Meet Miss Universe in Fantastic Universe Mar. 6/2 But how in the world could I compare some cute little Earth girl with a Sadal Suud Isobrod? Or one of those Pleiades dragon-women?
energy gun n. 1973 J. Vance The Asutra in Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction June 28/1 He carries an energy gun, which might be instrumental in capturing the ship.
flitter n. 1957 J. Vance Languages of Pao in Satellite Science Fiction Dec. 10/2 You delivered sixty-four barrage monitors, five hundred and twelve patrol flitters, a large number of multiple resonators, energetics, wasps and hand-weapons. These accord with the original order.
gadget story n. 1982 J. Vance Lost Moons 11 Specifically, in regard to the stories: THE WORLD-THINKER is my first published story. DREAM CASTLES, SABOTAGE ON SULFUR PLANET, POTTERS OF FIRSK (with its smarmy ending) came while I was trying to produce gadget stories.
hypospray n. 1950 ‘J. Holbrook’ Ultimate Quest in Super Science Stories Sept. 49/2 Chiram went to the medicine chest, loaded a hypospray. He motioned; Galt and Julius held Jay’s arms and legs; Chiram pressed the trigger, and the opiate seeped through Jay’s pale skin, into his blood, into his brain.
hypospray n. 1951 J. Vance Masquerade on Dicantropus in Startling Stories Sept. 92/1 He washed out the hypospray, returned the Guide to the rack, all with a sudden self-conscious awkwardness.
ion gun n. 1951 J. Vance Overlords of Maxus in Thrilling Wonder Stories Feb. 51/2 He’s committed murder…. Just an hour or so ago with an ion gun.
light-week n. 1952 J. Vance Sabotage on Sulfur Planet in Startling Stories June 104/1 How far had they come? Little more than a light-week or two; he could hear the whir of motors still building up acceleration.
normal space n. 1951 J. Vance Winner Lose All in Galaxy Science Fiction Dec. 94/2 Call the captain, ring general quarters. We're going into normal space.
Planet Earth n. 1948 J. Vance Hard Luck Diggings in Startling Stories July 106/1 You must remember that this is not Planet Earth, and conditions—the psychological, the biological, and…the essentially logical circumstances—are different from what you have been accustomed to.
pleasure planet n. 1945 J. Vance The World-Thinker in Thrilling Wonder Stories Summer 45/2 Where had he seen eyes with that expression? On Fan, the Pleasure Planet?
slideway n. 1977 J. Vance Freitzke's Turn in R. Silverberg Triax 169 From the space port Hetzel rode a slideway to the Traveler’s Hotel.
spaceboat n. 1955 J. Vance Meet Miss Universe in Fantastic Universe Mar. 7/2 An extremely wealthy man, he was serving as General Director at a salary of a dollar a year. He was an ardent sportsman; he owned his own space-boat; he enjoyed cooking and serving little dinners of viands imported from distant worlds.
space field n. 2 1950 J. Vance Five Gold Bands in Startling Stories Nov. 54/2 The Shauls had sheared off and leveled the peak of an old volcano to make Aevelye’s space-field. When Paddy and Fay brought their boat down they found themselves overlooking a vast panorama of badlands, a chopped and hacked region of red, yellow, and green-gray rock.
spacemanship n. 1962 J. Vance Gateway to Strangeness in Amazing Stories Aug. 18/2 This is poor spacemanship. The sail must always be in such a position as to hold the wires taut.
space patrol n. 1945 J. Vance World-Thinker in Thrilling Wonder Stories Summer 39/1 Lanarck stood silent and grim. The girl must be either a fool or very desperate. This was a hostile space she was entering. In another day or so she’d be slicing the fringe of the Clantlalan System, where the far-flung space patrol of that dark and inimical empire blasted without warning all approaching vessels.
starfaring n. 1973 J. Vance Trullion: Alastor 2262 iv. 30 If I’m not mistaken it’s young Glinnes Hulden, back from starfaring!
starport n. [1948 J. Vance Hard Luck Diggings in Startling Stories July 104/1 I happened to be passing through Starport and the Commander asked me to visit you. [Ibid. 106/2] There was a short pause, while the message raced at near-instantaneous speed to Starport and back.]
telepathize v. 1950 J. Vance Five Gold Bands in Startling Stories Nov. v. 37/1 The Loristanese are psysically [sic] keen. They can telepathize to some extent, and they’re subtle in person-to-person dealings. They’re the merchants of the universe and wonders at group enterprise.
teleview n. 1947 J. Vance I’ll Build Your Dream Castle in Astounding Science Fiction Sept. 80/1 The teleview buzzed. Flora reached over, screened the caller. ‘Oh, good afternoon, Mr. Westgeller’—for it was indeed Mr. Westgeller’s round ruddy features on the screen. ‘I’ll put you through to Mr. Farrero.’
transgalactic adj. 1955 J. Vance Meet Miss Universe in Fantastic Universe Mar. 10/1 The Trans-Galactic Beauty Contest was scheduled for the month of February, when attendance might be expected to undergo a seasonal lull.