John W. Campbell, Jr.

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John W. Campbell, Jr.

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38 First Quotations from John W. Campbell, Jr.

atomics n. 1 1932 J. W. Campbell Electronic Siege in Wonder Stories Apr. 1247/2 The slim, graceful ship rose smoothly into the atmosphere…as the gentle hum of mighty Farrel Atomics poured their millions of horsepower into the McKinley space-drive discs.
chronoscope n. 1936 ‘D. A. Stuart’ Elimination in Astounding Stories May 57/1 I shouldn’t have told the police about my chronoscope. But I put the apparatus in, and I think I got it in right, and John, it makes the near-future images better, but what do you think—it cuts out some of the long-range tracks.
earth-normal n. 1932 J. W. Campbell Electronic Siege in Wonder Stories Apr. 1249/1 Like the Patrol cruisers, the lifeless, defenseless ship careened on through space, her acceleration dropping immediately to Earth normal as automatic machines took up the unconscious pilot’s duties.
escape ship n. 1932 J. W. Campbell, Jr. Space Rays in Wonder Stories Dec. 585/1 Lt. Lane and his men were dumped unceremoniously into this tiny escape ship, and turned adrift, without radio or weapons. Lane was heading with all speed for Mars, some thirty million miles away.
floater n. 1935 ‘D. A. Stuart’ The Machine in Astounding Stories Feb. 73/2 A dark shadow drifted slowly across the room, and they turned to see a five-passenger floater sinking slowly, gently, to Earth.
force screen n. 1932 J. W. Campbell Last Evolution in Amazing Stories Aug. 416/2 But, they attacked in such numbers that fully half the fleet was destroyed by their explosions before the induction beam fleet arrived. These beams were, to our amazement, quite useless, being instantly absorbed by a force-screen, and the remaining ships sailed on undisturbed, our torpedoes being exhausted.
free fall n. 1931 J. W. Campbell Islands of Space in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 167/1 Since they were to use the space control, though, they would be subject to infinite acceleration, it would be a free fall, and Fuller would remain helplessly weightless.
gravitic adj. 1935 J. W. Campbell Mightiest Machine in Astounding Stories Mar. 112/1 To the great weapons…he added…ball magnetic and ball gravitic bombs.
gravity n. 1930 J. W. Campbell, Jr. Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 497/1 Each man seemed laboring under the load of three gravities and four gravities as the ships flashed on at ever higher speeds.
gravity drive n. 1932 J. W. Campbell, Jr. Invaders from the Infinite in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring–Summer 219/1 He made a new ship…. It was equipped with gravity drive, and time distortion speed apparatus, and his far better trained mind finished this smaller ship with his titanic tools in less than the two days that it took them to reach Venone.
groundcar n. 1930 J. W. Campbell The Voice of the Void in Amazing Stories Quarterly Summer 400/1 Now the four habitable planets were at once settled upon. Already they had been carefully mapped, and the Supreme Council had drawn up a plan for the use of the vast planets. More area there was than they needed now, by far, so the cities were scattered widely over the globes. Mere planetary distances meant nothing to them. And all the areas between were carefully preserved as vast, natural parks. Through them wound roads for the little ground cars, so that the people might better see the beauties of the place. And some of the harmless animals would be permitted to live that the future population might know them.
jump n. 1932 J. W. Campbell Invaders from the Infinite in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 217/2 So far behind them now as to be almost lost in the far scattered universes, lay their own Island, and carefully they photographed and marked it. Then they photographed the Universe that now lay less than twenty million light years ahead. […] Carefully, running forward in jumps of five million light years, forty-five second drives, they worked nearer.
kiloyear n. 1945 J. W. Campbell Limits in Astounding Science-Fiction Apr. 5/2 Remember that homo sapiens has been around from one hundred to two hundred fifty kiloyears.
light-speed n. 2 1932 J. W. Campbell Invaders from the Infinite in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 148/1 The skilful hands at the controls were turning adjustments now, and that disc of flame seemed to leap toward him with a hundred light-speeds, growing to a disc as large as a dime in an instant, while the myriad points of the stars seemed to scatter like frightened chickens, fleeing from the growing sun, out of the screen.
light-speed n. 2 1932 J. W. Campbell Invaders from the Infinite in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 222/1 Again a tiny ship entered Thett’s far-flung atmosphere, and slowed to less than a light speed, and sent its signal call ahead.
matter transmitter n. [1930 J. W. Campbell The Voice of the Void in Amazing Stories Quarterly Summer 392/1 Of the fleet of ten great ships, and the accompanying matter-sender, six ships returned. The rest floated out there in the interplanetary space around Betelguese.]
megayear n. 1935 J. W. Campbell Night in Astounding Stories Oct. 20/2 With what we have learned in the uncounted dusty megayears since, we might have been able to save him.
mother ship n. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 516/1 Since I expect to make long trips in them, I think we will do best if we make several types of ships. Three should suffice: a small single man cruiser, with no bunk or living quarters, just a little power plant and weapon. One that can jump out of the way of a ray so quickly that it will be very hard to hit, and at the same time, because of its ray, be very dangerous. There will have to be some place for the operator of this ship to sleep and eat. I think the easiest way to solve that is to have a large fleet of mother ships—ships with a twenty-man crew, but still very active, and very deadly. These should have bunks and living quarters for the crew. Some men would be sleeping in the bunks all the time. The men could take turns running the one-man ships and sleeping.
mother ship n. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 516/1 The ships must be capable of about six or seven thousand miles a second, and that implies all the acceleration a human being can endure. Since I expect to make long trips in them, I think we will do best if we make several types of ships. Three should suffice: a small single man cruiser, with no bunk or living quarters, just a little power plant and weapon. One that can jump out of the way of a ray so quickly that it will be very hard to hit, and at the same time, because of its ray, be very dangerous. There will have to be some place for the operator of this ship to sleep and eat. I think the easiest way to solve that is to have a large fleet of mother ships—ships with a twenty-man crew, but still very active, and very deadly. These should have bunks and living quarters for the crew. Some men would be sleeping in the bunks all the time. The men could take turns running the one-man ships and sleeping. There will also be some ten-man scout cruisers. These will be used in the same way, but will have a smaller fleet of ships dependent on them.
normal space n. 1931 J. W. Campbell Islands of Space in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 215/1 They were moving slowly, in normal space, only four miles a second, so they were falling swiftly toward the planet.
nova n. 1942 J. W. Campbell Supernova Centaurus in Astounding Science-Fiction Feb. 6/2 We've considered what might happen if Sol itself went nova. If it should go supernova, no worse could happen; Earth and all life on it would be fused and volatilized in either case.
ray v. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 509/1 So the ships had been rayed apart, and when Arcot had left, their burning atmosphere had been evolving mighty tongues of flame shooting a mile into the air.
Solarian n. 2 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 521/2 The small ships of the Nigrians were beginning to take a terrific toll in the thin ranks of the Solarians. The coming of the Rocket Squad had been welcomed indeed! They were able to maneuver as quickly as the enemy; the little ships, all one-man ships, were harder to spot than the Solarian ten and twenty-man ships. The Solarian one-man ships were even smaller than the Nigrian one-man ships, and some of these did a tremendous amount of damage.
Solarian n. 2 1930 J. W. Campbell Metal Horde in Amazing Stories Apr. 11/1 The Solarians…had twenty billions to back them up, and they had the resources of three planets.
Solarian adj. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 521/2 The small ships of the Nigrians were beginning to take a terrific toll in the thin ranks of the Solarians. The coming of the Rocket Squad had been welcomed indeed! They were able to maneuver as quickly as the enemy; the little ships, all one-man ships, were harder to spot than the Solarian ten and twenty-man ships. The Solarian one-man ships were even smaller than the Nigrian one-man ships, and some of these did a tremendous amount of damage.
Solarian adj. 1930 J. W. Campbell Voice of the Void in Amazing Stories Quarterly Summer 395/1 Even in the blazing minor star they lived, darting in and coming out of its flames as unconcernedly as a Solarian ship would dart in or out of an atmosphere.
space drive n. 1932 J. W. Campbell Invaders from Infinite in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 154/2 There we shall have plenty of work to do, but on the way we are going to stop at Mars and pick up that very valuable ship of theirs and make a very careful examination for possible new weapons, their system of speed-drive, and their regular space-drive, if it is not the same.
space drive n. 1932 J. W. Campbell Electronic Siege in Wonder Stories 3 Apr. 1247/2 The slim, graceful ship rose smoothly into the atmosphere, angling slightly up, then driving forward as the gentle hum of mighty Farrel Atomics poured their millions of horsepower into the McKinley space-drive discs.
space freighter n. 1930 J. W. Campbell Voice of the Void in Amazing Stories Quarterly Summer 392/1 High in the jet black sky, a scant hundred miles from the ground below, a mighty space-freighter was taking off for Venus. The thin belt of atmosphere permitted it to reach a high speed quickly. Already it was in full stride and heading at 1,000 miles a second for Venus.
spaceline n. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 499/1 The bonds of friendship between the two planets had grown swiftly in those three years, and they were already linked by many regular space lines. These ships made the trips as frequently as the relative positions of the planets permitted.
space lock n. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 520/2 A quarter of an hour later the people who were to remain here on this planet saw the first of the monsters of the space rise slowly from the ground and leap swiftly forward, then, one every ten seconds, the others leapt in swift pursuit, rushing swiftly across half a world to the giant space lock that would let them out into the void. Then one at a time they passed out into the mighty sea of space, Pirates of Space! From one system, careening on its way through the void, they were sweeping out to another system, to take it, and overrun it with their people!
space pilot n. 1932 J. W. Campbell Invaders from Infinite in Amazing Stories Quarterly Spring 148/1 The change from the energy-less, flavored pastes that made up the principal bulk of a space-pilot’s diet, to prevent over-eating, when no energy was used in walking in the weightless ship, was indeed a welcome change.
supernova n. 1942 J. W. Campbell Supernova Centaurus in Astounding Science-Fiction Feb. 6/2 We’ve considered what might happen if Sol itself went nova. If it should go supernova, no worse could happen; Earth and all life on it would be fused and volatilized in either case.
system-wide adj. 1935 J. W. Campbell Contest of the Planets in Amazing Stories Jan. 26/1 Had men been afflicted with some titanic system-wide plague?
Terrestrian n. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 516/2 This rocket squad was composed almost solely of Terrestrians, for they were used to the greater gravity of Earth, and could stand greater acceleration than could Venerians.
terrestrian adj. 1930 J. W. Campbell Black Star Passes in Amazing Stories Quarterly Fall 500/1 In the meantime the Terrestrian and Venerian governments were already preparing vigorously for further inroads.
time viewer n. 1940 J. W. Campbell in Astounding Science-Fiction Aug. 6 Wanted: a chronoscope. Such a time viewer would be darned handy in many ways, but at the moment—”and this moment in which I am writing is so long gone as to be difficult to recall from its point of history by the time this is read—”one would be useful in devising this page.
tractor beam n. [1930 J. W. Campbell Voice of the Void in Amazing Stories Quarterly Summer 392/1 And now, as a great freighter swung low, a machine on the ground below turned on a ray that stabbed out sharp and brilliant; a moment later the freighter tug lifted a half-million-ton piece of the planet on its attractor beams and rapidly gained headway as it shot off toward distant Venus. ]