sensawunda n.

= sense of wonder n.

SF Criticism

SF Fandom

  • 1961 F. Ackerman From the Treasure Trove of Genghis Fhan in Cry of Nameless (#154) Nov. 17 (advt.) page image Forrest J. Ackerman

    Item 17....HONEYMOON IN SPACE by Geo Griffith. A fabulous item. A complete paperback form, perhaps 60 years old and looks it—but all there to read. Your sensawunda will be especially aroused by the advertisement for Ven-Yusa, ‘the famous oxygen face cream, the most refined & ingenious preparation ever invented for the human skin.’

  • 1972 ‘Skel’ in Hell (#8) 6 page image Paul Skelton

    SF on the box just doesn’t seem to come across. There is no ‘sensawunda’ about it, no suspension of disbelief. It all comes across like an attempt to televise SF, not like SF per se.

  • 1978 Science Fiction Review May 53/2 page image

    Gerrold’s skimpy three-paragraph intro is a glorification of the sensawunda, and reads with the anonymous hyperbole of a blurb.

  • 1991 Matrix Aug.–Sept. 10/2 page image

    It gave me that initial jolt of Sensawunda, the first high that sends you craving for more, even though you will never attain such an emotional peak again.

  • 2005 P. Di Filippo On Books in Asimov’s Science Fiction Mar. 134/1 page image Paul Di Filippo

    If you don’t get your full complement of sensawunda from this tale, you’ve been tamed and declawed by too much literary canoodling.

  • 2019 Askance July 7 page image

    So we could conclude that Steampunk reinvigorated readers with that old-fashioned gosh-wow sensawunda we had as teenagers first discovering science fiction and fantasy.

Research requirements

antedating 1961

Earliest cite

Forry Ackerman

Research History
Suggested, and most cites submitted, by Bill Mullins.
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 1961 cite from Forrest Ackerman.

Last modified 2022-01-03 14:45:36
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.