ET n.

= alien n.

[< extraterrestrial]

SF Encyclopedia


  • 1939 L. S. de Camp Design for Life in Astounding Science-Fiction May 103/1 page image L. Sprague de Camp bibliography

    I was moved to concoct that fragment as a result of running through a file of magazines and comparing the ideas of the writers on the form that intelligent extra-terrestrials might have. The authors are nothing if not industrious in devising a variety of shapes for their e.-t.’s.

  • 1944 J. B. Speer Fancyclopedia 28/1 Jack Speer bibliography

    e.t.’s… Extra-terrestrials; natives of other worlds. Any resemblance to d.t.’s is probably not wholly coincidental.

  • 1957 T. Sturgeon Bulkhead in Thunder & Roses 189 Theodore Sturgeon bibliography

    The xenologists and e-t mineralogists who were crazy enough to work out there.

  • 1961 F. Leiber Big Time (1969) 13 Fritz Leiber

    The Place has sectional gravity to suit our Extraterrestrial buddies—those crazy ETs sometimes come whooping in for recuperation in very mixed bunches.

  • 1979 B. A. Freitas, Jr. Illegal Aliens in Omni Nov. 86/1 page image

    If an ET resembles a cross between a sea scorpion and a grasshopper, it may have no [legal] protection whatsoever.

  • 1980 D. Brin Sundiver i.i. 9 David Brin

    He couldn’t resist an opportunity to talk with an E.T., anywhere, anytime.

  • 1984 D. Brin Practice Effect ii. viii. 39 David Brin bibliography

    Blowing on it, he muttered as his temper slowly wound down. ‘Stupid, practical joking E.T.s…damned fickle aliens…’

  • 1988 A. C. Clarke & G. Lee Cradle (1989) 256 page image Arthur C. Clarke Gentry Lee bibliography

    ‘You don’t agree with me that we’ve just met some ETs?’ Carol came up beside Nick and slightly teased him with her question. ‘I don’t know,’ he answered slowly. ‘It seems like quite a leap to make. After all, if there is an extraterrestrial infestation in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, it should have been found before now. Submarines and other boats with active sonar must cross this region at least once or twice a year.’ He smiled at her. ‘You’ve been reading too much science fiction.’

  • 1990 ‘J. Tiptree, Jr.’ Color of Neanderthal Eyes 11 James Tiptree, Jr.

    What can I tell her convincingly? Of the iron Rule Number One in ET contacts?

  • 2008 B. Bova Waterbot in New Frontiers (2014) 185 page image Ben Bova bibliography

    When they first detected our distress call the astronomers went delirious: they thought they’d found an intelligent extraterrestrial signal, after more than a century of searching. They were sore as hell when they realized it was only a dinky old waterbot in trouble, not aliens trying to say hello. They didn’t give a rat’s ass of a hoot about Forty-niner and me, but as long as our Mayday was being beamed out their fancy radio telescope search for ETs was screwed.

  • 2015 E. Cline Armada xx. 270 page image Ernest Cline bibliography

    ‘Well, hello there!’ I heard my father say over the comm. ‘This is General Xavier Lightman of the Earth Defense Alliance. Where do you assholes think you’re headed?’ After a pause, he added: ‘Klaatu barada nikto, fellas.’ Then, perhaps taking his own stab at some gallows humor, he whistled the five-note message used to communicate with the friendly ETs in Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The same tones that bookended each of the Europans’ montage transmissions.

Research requirements

antedating 1939

Earliest cite

L. Sprague de Camp

Research History
The OED cite is from a 1957 reprint of Theodore Sturgeon's "Bulkhead". Bill Seabrook verified that the cite is in the 1956 reprint of the story in "A Way Home", and that it is not in the original publication, in March 1955 in Galaxy. We only have the 1957 version.

Mike Christie submitted a 1945 cite from John Campbell's "In Times To Come" column in Astounding.
Leah Zeldes submitted a 1939 cite from L. Sprague de Camp, in Astounding.
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 1988 cite from Arthur C. Clark and Gentry Lee's Cradle.
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 2008 cite from Ben Bova.
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 2015 cite from Ernest Cline.

Last modified 2021-10-07 12:16:45
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.