vessel n.

a spacecraft


  • 1900 G. Griffith Visit to Moon in Pearson’s Magazine Feb. 112/1 page image George Griffith bibliography

    Another signal went over the wire, the Astronef’s propellers slowed down and stopped, and the vessel began to rise swiftly towards the zenith, which the Sun was now approaching.

  • 1925 J. Schlossel Invaders from Outside in Weird Tales Jan. 7/1 page image J. Schlossel bibliography

    They next told of the homesickness that had engulfed them and their inability to leave because they were short-handed. More than half of the crew had died and they could not work their vessel back.

  • 1928 E. E. Smith & L. H. Garby Skylark of Space in Amazing Stories Sept. 538/2 page image Edward E. Smith Lee Hawkins Garby bibliography

    They calculated their own speed, and that of the other vessel, as shown by the various readings taken, and applied just enough negative acceleration to slow the Skylark down to the speed of the other space-car when they should come up with it.

  • 1929 Amazing Stories Aug. 473/1 (title of letter) page image

    The path taken by space travellers in a vessel will nullify gravity.

  • 1938 E. E. Smith Galactic Patrol in Astounding Stories Jan. 131/1 page image Edward E. Smith bibliography

    Off he shot, and in due course a fair, green, Earthlike planet lay beneath his vessel’s keel.

  • 1942 E. F. Russell Describe a Circle in Astounding Science-Fiction Mar. 130/2 page image Eric Frank Russell bibliography

    A terrific burst of thunder came from the rockets and the whole vessel slewed around.

  • 1942 L. R. Hubbard Space Can in Astounding Science-Fiction July 73/2 page image L. Ron Hubbard bibliography

    A small amount of Ensign Gates' placidity left his face. They were being severely knocked about by a vessel which had a longer range and a faster steering system, which was landing four hits to their two. ‘Hulled her!’ cried Ensign Wayton, an invisible source of death forward and above. Evidently something had happened to the Saturnian, for an instant later, in a steady stream, Wayton began to chant the Menace’s hits.

  • 1967 J. Blish Warriors of Day xi. 118 James Blish bibliography

    Their own casualties had been enormous, but they had definitely and finally accounted for two of the five-mile-long vessels of the Warriors of Day.

  • 1972 A. D. Foster Tar-Aiym Krang 175 Alan Dean Foster bibliography

    The powerful little ship was a complete space-going vessel, albeit a far more streamlined and less spacious one than the Gloryhole. It was powered by rockets of advanced design and, for atmospheric, sub-orbital flight, by ramjets. Being intended for simple ground-to-space, space-to-ground flights, it had limited cruising range.

  • 1986 L. M. Bujold Warrior’s Apprentice (1992) 102 Lois McMaster Bujold bibliography

    Upon emergence into Tau Verde local space, all vessels will be approached and boarded for inspection.

  • 1991 J. G. Ballard Dream Cargoes in Omni Feb. 59/2 page image J. G. Ballard bibliography

    The moment that Galloway, with a last disgusted curse, had stepped into the freighter’s single lifeboat, he, Johnson, had become the captain of this doomed vessel.

  • 1997 E. Moon Once A Hero 38 Elizabeth Moon bibliography

    Still, the Board recommends that you not be considered for command of a Regular Space Service vessel until you have shown, in combat situations, the level of tactical and operational competence expected of warship commanders.

  • 2002 D. Weber War of Honor 381 David Weber bibliography

    All of his vessels’ parking orbits had been carefully arranged to avoid any problems with wedge interference if it was necessary to bring up their impellers quickly.

Research requirements

antedating 1900

Earliest cite

G. Griffiths 'A Honeymoon in Space'

Research History
The OED has an entry for "airship or hovercraft" (with an Asimov quote), but not for spaceship.

Michael Dolbear submitted a 2002 cite from David Weber's "War of Honor".
Michael Dolbear submitted a 1997 cite from Elizabeth Moon's "Once A Hero".
Mike Christie submitted a July 1942 cite from L.Ron Hubbard's "Space Can".
Mike Christie submitted a March 1942 cite from Eric Frank Russell's "Describe A Circle".
Mike Christie submitted a 1938 cite from E.E. Smith's "Galactic Patrol".
Michael Dolbear submitted a cite from a 1992 reprint of Lois McMaster Bujold's 1986 "The Warrior's Apprentice".
Douglas Winston submitted a 1972 cite from Alan Dean Foster's "The Tar-Aiym Krang".
Douglas Winston submitted a cite from a 1967 reprint of James Blish's 1951 "The Warriors of Day".
Jeff Prucher submitted a 1929 cite from the letter column in Amazing Stories.
Alistair Durie submitted a 1928 cite from E.E. Smith's "The Skylark of Space".
Alistair Durie submitted a 1925 cite from J. Schlossel's "Invaders from Outside".
Ralf Brown submitted a citation from the 1900 serialization in Pearson's Magazine of George Griffiths' "A Honeymoon in Space".

Last modified 2022-12-27 01:33:11
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.