Robert Silverberg

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Robert Silverberg

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93 Quotations from Robert Silverberg

alien adj. 2015 R. Silverberg Reflections in Asimov’s Science Fiction Mar. 6/1 How plausible is it going to be that we will ever develop handy translating devices that will let us communicate with the inhabitants of alien worlds?
Anglofan n. 1958 R. Silverberg Fanfare in Infinity Science Fiction Jan. 102/2 Mr. and Mrs. Frank Dietz and Mr. and Mrs. Dave Kyle, New Yorkers all, joined Anglofan Norman Weedall.
anywhen adv. 1971 R. Silverberg In Entropy’s Jaws in R. Hoskins Infinity 2 224 Anything. Anywhere. Anywhen. You're free to move along the time-line as you please. In a state of controlled, directed fugue, so to speak.
apazine n. 1953 R. Silverberg Spaceship (#20) Jan. 6 Plus apazines of all descriptions.
Asimovian adj. 1965 R. Silverberg Spectroscope in Amazing Stories Mar. 125/2 Others [sc. short stories]…have been dusted off because they deal with robots. Most of these are pretty minor jobs by Asimovian standards, and a couple of them are minor by anybody’s standards.
cold sleep n. 1984 R. Silverberg Waiting for Earthquake in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 202 I singlehandedly give a starship the checkdown for a voyage of fifty light-years, and then I put myself into coldsleep and I go home all alone and wake up on an alien planet where my remote ancestors happened to have been born. What for?
construct n. 1971 R. Silverberg Second Trip (1972) ix. 102 You’re being unreasonable, Macy. I mean, look at it objectively. You may think you exist, but you actually don’t. You’re a construct. You don’t have any more genuine reality as a person, as a human being, than that wall over there.
deflector n. 1970 R. Silverberg Tower of Glass in Galaxy Magazine June 83/2 In flight, an automatic deflector field surrounds the ship to ward off all oncoming free-floating particles, which of course could be enormously destructive at such velocities.
downtime adv. 1991 R. Silverberg Thebes of Hundred Gates 41 But of course he had been loaded to the brim with antigens before leaving downtime.
dropshaft n. 1958 R. Silverberg in Original Science Fiction Stories Jan. 6/1 Even had the strangers come that night, if they had left their ship in a parking orbit and landed on World by dropshaft, it might not have happened.
earthborn n. 1988 R. Silverberg We are for Dark in Collected Stories (1993) II. 357 We have some Earthborn here, still.
Earthbound adj. 1 1984 R. Silverberg Waiting for Earthquake in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 199—200 Paul, tough old indestructible Paul, had panicked over the thought that the earthquake was only a decade away, and between Darkday and Dimday of Christmas week had packed up and boarded an Earthbound ship.
Earthbound adj. 2 1988 R. Silverberg We are for Dark in Collected Stories (1993) II. 324 I have no regret over remaining Earthbound: far from it! Earth is our great mother. Earth is the mother of us all. Troubled as she is, blighted as she now may be, dying, even, I am content to stay here, and more than content.
earther n. 1958 R. Silverberg Stepsons of Terra 29 He had been visited by an Earther, and a Sirian girl had maneuvered him into eating dinner with her.
earthfall n. 1958 R. Silberberg We, the Marauders in Science Fiction Quarterly Feb. 53/1 The day of Earthfall came.
earth folk n. 2012 R. Silverberg Song of Last Things in When the Blue Shift Comes (2014) 44 The people who lived on Earth, though, didn’t have to die at all, unless they chose to, and that sort of thing wasn’t exactly common. Why the Earthfolk were exempt from death was something widely discussed, and widely misunderstood, on the other inhabited worlds of the universe.
Earthian adj. 1983 R. Silverberg Amanda & Alien in Coll. Stories (1993)I. 134 Is this a typical Earthian home?
earthman n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) v. 54 We start disseminating word of a colony of Earthmen on Ganymede. Volunteers.
earth-norm adj. 1957 R. Silverberg Misfit in Super-Science Fiction Dec. 101/2 On a heavy-grav planet like this, you’re better suited than we are. After all, you've been Adapted for it. On an Earth-norm world, it’s the other way around.
Earthsider n. 1994 R. Silverberg Hot Sky at Midnight 5 Juanito listened to the sound of his breathing, quick and shallow, the way all Earthsiders breathed.
Earth-type adj. 1 1956 R. Silverberg Collecting Team in Moonferns & Starsongs (1971) 29 During the night, invisible hands had put it there. Had assembled and built a cozy little Earth-type house and dropped it next to our ship for us to live in.
elsewhen adv. 1984 R. Silverberg Far Side of Bell-Shaped Curve, The in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 27 Merely whirling Ilsabet off elsewhen would achieve nothing.
empath n. 1957 R. Silverberg Warm Man in Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction May 55/2 Irony: the compulsive empath overloaded and burned out by a compulsive sender who'd been bottled up.
escape ship n. 1970 R. Silverberg Pleasure of Their Company in Moonferns and Starsongs (1971) 155 Over the past few years, as the likelihood of Contingency C had grown steadily greater, Voigtland had cubed everyone who was really close to him and stored the cubes aboard the escape ship, just in case.
eyetracks n. 1992 R. Silverberg Reflections in Amazing Stories 5/3 The two Alice novels…show signs of having been read and read and read. But the trail of fingerprints and eyetracks indicates that I went right on to the next two novels.
farside n. 1984 R. Silverberg Waiting for Earthquake in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 214 His first stop was Meditation Island, the jumping-off point for those who went to visit Virgil Oddum’s fantastic and ever-evolving ice sculptures out on Farside.
faster-than-light adj. 1994 R. Silverberg Hot Sky at Midnight 190 I speak of our attempts, of which you have probably heard rumors, to develop a faster-than-light spaceship that will be capable of conducting human colonists to suitable planets outside the solar system.
flitter n. 1984 R. Silverberg Waiting for Earthquake in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 204 At the landing strip where commuters from Enrique and Pellucidar once had parked their flitters after flying in for the weekend, he checked out his own, an ‘83 model with sharply raked lines and a sophisticated moire-pattern skin, now somewhat pitted and rusted by neglect.
galactic n. 1 1967 R. Silverberg Those Who Watch 81 Certainly the galactics have landed on Earth many times, and have come among us in human form.
gate n. 1967 R. Silverberg Gate of Worlds 243 Meanwhile I use old Quequex' useful notion of a Gate of Worlds. With eyes closed I stand at that Gate, seeing past the golden radiance into other worlds of maybe. I see a world in which Takinaktu and I did not quarrel at the end, but sailed to Africa together.
genetically engineered adj. [1957 R. Silverberg Misfit in Super Science Fiction Dec. 100/1 His type had been genetically engineered for worlds like Sandoval IX. ]
groundcar n. 1984 R. Silverberg Waiting for Earthquake in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 207 A few groundcars were parked at the airstrip.
holovision n. 1970 R. Silverberg Tower of Glass in Galaxy Magazine June 86/1 They simply crossed the plaza again and again, marching neither too rigidly nor too slackly, keeping their eyes on the holovision hovercameras above them.
home star n. 1970 R. Silverberg Tower of Glass in Galaxy Magazine Apr. 120/2 ‘We have tracked the signals to their source,’ Vargas said. ‘I thought you would like to see their home star.’
jack in v. 1970 R. Silverberg Tower of Glass in Galaxy Magazine June 141/20 Watchman replaced him in the linkup seat. He jacked himself into the computer.
laser pistol n. 1967 R. Silverberg Time Hoppers xiv. 144 He was well armed; taped to the palm of his hand was an anesthetic prong that would flip out at a command of his muscles, and beneath his armpit was a neural spray in case something went awry with the prong. He carried a laser pistol too, but the last thing he intended was to use it on Mortensen.
light n. 1 1974 R. Silverberg Schwartz Between Galaxies in Feast of St. Dionysus (1987) 81 Three boneless Spicans do a twining dance of propitiation to while away the slow hours of nine-light travel.
light-minute n. 1971 R. Silverberg In Entropy's Jaws in R. Hoskins Infinity 2 199 That is the voyage’s final acceleration; the ship will maintain this rate for two and a half days, until it clocks in at Scylla, the main deceleration station for this part of the galaxy, where it will be seized by a spongy web of forces twenty lightminutes in diameter and slowed to sublight velocities for the entry into the Abbondanza system.
light sail n. 1988 R. Silverberg We are for Dark in Coll. Stories (1993)II. 342 Small unmanned starships, laser-powered robot drones, unfurling great lightsails and gliding starwards on the urgent breath of photonic winds that we ourselves stirred up.
mad scientist n. 1958 R. Silverberg Recalled to Life in Infinity Science Fiction June 25/2 Needles plunged into the dead man’s skin; electrodes fastened to the scalp discharged suddenly…. All that seemed missing was the eery blue glow that characterized the evil experiments of stereotyped mad scientists.
mundane adj. 1 1993 R. Silverberg Coll. StoriesII. 68 A ‘translation’, in the uncompromising critical vocabulary set forth by Damon Knight and James Blish in the 1950s on which I based much of my own fiction-writing aesthetic, is an adaptation of a stock format of mundane fiction into s-f by a simple one-for-one substitution of science-fictiony noises for the artefacts of the mundane field.
nightside adj. 1958 ‘C. M. Knox’ Fueling Stop in Future Science Fiction Oct. 30/2 We were spiralling down to the surface of the planet for a nightside landing.
null-g n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) ix. 88 You slept through the whole thing, it seems. Blast-off and null-g and everything.
off-planet adv. 1956 R. Silverberg Lonely One in Science Fiction Stories July 117/1 It’s been centuries since any Earthman’s been allowed to get off-planet.
outworld adj. 1958 R. Silverberg Stepsons of Terra 32 It is not often that an ambassador from an outworld colony arrives on Earth.
out-worldly adj. 1979 R. Silberberg Lord Valentine's Castle in Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction Nov. 48/1 Three orchestras of strange outworldly instruments, tuning up in bizarre discord.
parking orbit n. 1958 R. Silverberg in Original Science Fiction Stories Jan. 6/1 Even had the strangers come that night, if they had left their ship in a parking orbit and landed on World by dropshaft, it might not have happened.
planetographer n. 1996 R. Silverberg Starborne 113 The ideal exploration party, it seems to me, would include one biologist, one planetographer, and, of course, one man to operate and do necessary maintenance work on the vehicle the party uses.
planet-wide adj. 1984 R. Silverberg Trouble With Sempoanga in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 171—2 His own planet, Waldemar, was a frosty place with a planetwide winter for three-quarters of the year, and on Sempoanga he erupted with great gusto into eternal tropical summer.
Plutonian adj. 1985 R. Silverberg Sunrise on Pluto in Coll. Stories (1993) I. 326 Our instruments, during the long Plutonian night, have been recording apparent indications that living creatures, Plutonian life-forms, are moving about out there.
posthuman adj. 1971 R. Silverberg Son of Man (1979) xxxiv. 189 Clay senses, as he has never before sensed, the full span of time through which he has passed; for now he is caught in a sea of shapes, prehuman and human and posthuman, coming and going, smothering him, demanding comfort from him, seeking redemption, chattering, laughing, weeping.
precog n. 2 1968 R. Silverberg Man in the Maze in Worlds of If Apr. 33/1 Look, sometimes I think I've got a little precog. I see things ahead.
pressor n. 1971 R. Silverberg In Entropy's Jaws in R. Hoskins Infinity 2 182 Place your arms through the stasis loops and your feet in the security platens. When you have done this the pressor fields will automatically be activated and you will be fully insulated against injury during the coming period of turbulence.
prodom n. 1958 R. Silverberg From Der Voodvork Out in Laundry (#1) Feb. 5 Part of this Impression was created by my familiarity with events in prodom and fandom dating back to earliest stefnal times, a familiarity I acquired during a diligent collecting career.
realspace n. 1973 R. Silverberg Ship-Sister, Star-Sister in R. Elwood Frontiers 1: Tomorrow’s Alternatives 95 There is no energy interface between realspace and nospace, no opportunity for any kind of electromagnetic intrusion. That much had been amply demonstrated long before any manned voyages were undertaken.
sapient adj. 1968 R. Silverberg Man in Maze in If Apr. 15/2 Because the dragon wore protective clothing, and so was sapient? Sapient corpses were deliberately allowed to remain, Muller realized.
science fantasy n. 4 1967 R. Silverberg Voyagers in Time x Among some modern science-fiction writers, stories of time-travel are looked upon with faint disdain, because they are not really ‘scientific’. The purists prefer to place such stories in the category of science-fantasy, reserved for fiction based on ideas impossible to realize through modern technology. That is, a story about a trip to Mars is merely an extension of current science, so long as it sticks to accepted knowledge and does not try to persuade us that Mars is a lovely planet of fertile gardens. But a story about a trip in time is fantasy, since nothing in modern scientific belief leads anyone to think that building a time machine is ever going to be possible. I grant this distinction for what it is worth—but I don’t think it’s worth very much. In the long run, even the most careful science-fiction story turns out to have been science-fantasy, when we compare prophecy with fact; we need only look at fiction written as recently as 1955 to see how different the reality of the early space age is from the predictions. Science fiction—even the best of it—does not give us literal blueprints. It deals, rather, in images, in ideas, in rearrangements of modern concepts. Its intention is to provoke thought, to dazzle the senses, and to divert the mind wearied with this moment of now.
science-fictionist n. 1998 R. Silverberg in Asimov’s Science Fiction June 7/2 I've tried to absorb them casually, like the forward-looking science-fictionist I've been for most of my live: simply nodding with quiet pleasure at each stunning announcement.
science fictiony adj. 1993 R. Silverberg Collected Stories II. 68 A ‘translation’, in the uncompromising critical vocabulary set forth by Damon Knight and James Blish in the 1950s on which I based much of my own fiction-writing aesthetic, is an adaptation of a stock format of mundane fiction into s-f by a simple one-for-one substitution of science-fictiony noises for the artefacts of the mundane field.
shapeshifting adj. 1981 R. Silverberg Thief in Ni-Moya in Asimov’s Science Fiction Dec. 123 The Metamorph province of Piurifayne lay just beyond the mountain range north of the city and a considerable number of the shapeshifting folk had filtered down into Velathys.
sol-type adj. 1958 ‘C. M. Knox’ Frontier Planet in Super-Science Fiction June 86/1 The hot Sol-type sun had burned away the morning clouds, leaving clear blue sky for the afternoon.
space bronzed adj. 1958 R. Silverberg Woman You Wanted in Future Science Fiction Apr. 13/1 Eight years from now I return, rich, muscular, space-bronzed.
space drive n. 1994 R. Silverberg Hot Sky at Midnight 52 Its work involves an experimental spacedrive, the first interstellar voyage, faster-than-light travel.
space fleet n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) xix. 176 The Extraterrestrial Development and Exploration Corporation has…become virtually a supranational state, with lands of its own, police of its own, now a spacefleet of its own.
space-going adj. 1994 R. Silverberg Hot Sky at Midnight 2 The place was nothing but an enormous spacegoing safe house.
spaceman n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) v. 53 At the moment the only human beings on Ganymede are a couple of dozen Corporation spacemen and scientists… Where’s the human interest in that?
spaceport n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) ix. 84 Blast-off was held at Spacefield Seven, a wide jet-blasted area in the flatlands of New Jersey that served as the sole spaceport for the eastern half of the United States.
spacing n. 1 1970 R. Silverberg Tower of Glass in Galaxy Magazine June 83/1 In this spacious catacomb many types of transportation devices were manufactured, covering all needs that the transmat could not meet: ocean-crawlers, sliders for surface travel, stratospheric gliders, heavy-duty powerhaulers, immersion modules for use on high-pressure worlds, ion-drive systemships for short-hop spacing, interstellar probes, gravity boxes, skydivers, minirailers, sunscoops.
spy ray n. 1958 R. Silverberg Stepsons of Terra 29 I want to know who planted that spy ray in my room, and why I should be warned against dealing with Myreck.
star drive n. 1988 R. Silverberg Secret Sharer in Coll. Stories (1993) II. 73 It is the stardrive that issues this light: a ship eats space, and light is its offthrow.
starway n. 1985 R. Silverberg Symbiont in Collected Stories (1993) I. 244 Finding me—finding anybody along the starways—wasn’t remotely probable.
suit n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) x. 96 At the end of the first hour he had a fair idea of how to run the suit, though he was still vague on what to do when the powerpak ran dry.
telescreen n. 1984 R. Silverberg Gianni in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 154 The room was an electronic jungle, festooned with gadgetry: a synthesizer, a telescreen, a megabuck audio library, five sorts of data terminals and all manner of other things perfectly suited to you basic eighteenth-century Italian drawing room.
Terran n. 2 1958 ‘E. Rodman’ Slaves of Tree in Super-Science Fiction June 56/2 A hymn was going up, now. Rayner strained to catch the words, but it seemed that they were only partly in Terran, and mainly in some strange and alien language whose words were smooth-flowing and liquid, with many vowels and few harsh consonants.
Terran adj. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) xii. 113 Twenty minutes after he had left the Terran outpost he saw what could only be the alien village.
time hopper n. 2 1967 R. Silverberg Time Hoppers (title) The Time Hoppers.
time hopper n. 2 [1956 R. Silverberg Hopper in Infinity Science Fiction Oct. 94/2 I've determined that these disappearances are directly connected to historical records of the apperance of the hoppers in the late Twentieth Century and succeeding years.]
time patrol n. 1973 R. Silverberg Many Mansions in Universe 3 84 Now to go back to the machine and return to 2006, she thinks. To start my new life. But as she leaves the apartment, a tall, lean man steps out of the hallway shadows and clamps his hand powerfully around her wrist. ‘Time Patrol,’ he says crisply, flashing an identification badge. ‘You’re under arrest for temponautic murder, Mrs. Porter.’
time patrol n. 1969 R. Silverberg Up the Line in Amazing Stories July 20/1 The other division of the Time Service is the Time Patrol, whose task it is to prevent abuses of Benchley Effect devices and to guard against the emergence of paradoxes. At our next lesson we will consider in detail the nature of these paradoxes and how they may be avoided.
timestream n. 1958 R. Silverberg Stepsons of Terra 72 As for me, I am no longer needed in the plan of events, and so intend to remove myself from the time-stream upon finishing this note.
time track n. 1958 R. Silverberg Stepsons of Terra 60 He was certain now that his rescuer had been an earlier Ewing, one who had preceded him through the time-track, reached this point in time, and doubled back to become his rescuer, precisely as he was about to do. His head swam. He refused to let himself dwell on the confusing, paradoxical aspects of the situation.
time track n. 1984 R. Silverberg Needle in Timestack in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 267 Whatever the symptom, it always meant the same thing: your time-track has been meddled with, your life has been retroactively transformed.
time travel n. 1984 R. Silverberg Needle in Timestack in R. Silverberg Conglomeroid Cocktail Party (1984) 275 Time-travel as tourism held no interest for him… The purpose of Tommy Hambledon’s time-travel, it seemed, was to edit his past to make his life more perfect.
transhuman adj. 1967 R. Silverberg Those Who Watch 81 When you return to my office, you’ll be much more deeply aware of the meaning of this unique and wonderful moment in human and transhuman history.
transhuman adj. 1967 R. Silverberg Those Who Watch 81 There were the saucer people: superb specimens of transhuman life, muscular, magnificent, with expressions of ineffable wisdom.
transmat n. 1970 R. Silverberg in Galaxy Magazine June 83/1 In this spacious catacomb many types of transportation devices were manufactured, covering all needs that the transmat could not meet.
tri-dim n. 1963 R. Silverberg To See Invisible Man in Worlds of Tomorrow Apr. 158/1 I entered theaters, where the happy lotus-eaters sat slumped in their massage-chairs, transfixed by the glowing tridim images—and I capered down the aisles.
tri-dim n. 1967 R. Silverberg Hawksbill Station in Galaxy Magazine Aug. 23/2 Fine wine, yes; a tridim of a daughter who would never be embraced again, no.
ultrawave n. 1970 R. Silverberg Tower of Glass in Galaxy Mag. Apr. 57/1 To the east is the laboratory where the tachyon-beam ultrawave communications equipment is being fabricated—a small pink dome which usually contains ten or a dozen technicians, patiently assembling the devices with which Krug hopes to send messages to the stars.
unsuit v. 1957 R. Silverberg Why? in Science Fiction Stories Nov. 67/1 Brock unsuited; the vine had left a red, raw line about his waist.
uptime adj. 1988 R. Silverberg House of Bones in Collected Stories ii. (1993) 157 Within a few weeks I realized that something had gone wonky on the uptime end, that the experiment had malfunctioned and that I probably wasn’t ever going to get home.
viewplate n. 1958 R. Silverberg Invaders from Earth (1987) ix. 86 Kennedy climbed in. There was a viewplate just to the left of his head.
waldo n. 1957 R. Silberberg One-Way Journey in Infinity Science Fiction Nov. 60/2 We make a good team on the waldoes.