an emergency spacecraft; lifeboat n.
But I’m afraid that will be a little late. For I waited to make this coup, to gas the crew and stun you, until we were just at this particular position in space. It is the prearranged position, and less than five thousand miles off this space-lane my own rocket and crew are waiting for me. We’re heading toward them now, and before your crew wakes, Evans,we’ll be with them and this rocket will be in their hands. You and your crew won't be harmed, of course--we can set you loose in a life ship near the moon—but this Earth-Guard craft we’ll keep and it should prove highly useful. An ingenious plan, everything considered, don’t you think? Nothing overlooked.
Evans of the Earth-Guard in Air Wonder Stories Apr. 943/1
Sharon was still by the control panel when the lifeship whistled down through the upper reaches of Callisto’s thin atmosphere.
Moon of Exile in Astounding Science-Fiction Aug. 125/1
Pedersen was hauling a bulky, burlap-wrapped package aboard the lifeship—four similar ones lay on the floor just outside the tube.
Doom Ship in Astounding Science Fiction Jan. 141/1
We limped in using a jury-rigged line from the lifeship’s alphatron and made a something-slightly-less than a crash landing here on Pluto.
in Astounding Science Fiction May 10/2
He dropped from the larger ship in the tiniest of lifeships, and taking the barrier-generator with him, he let the Loki drive across the System towards Mephisto, while he in the lifeship gave a short, ten-minute thrust at 10-Gs and set up the barrier again.
Nomad in Astounding Science Fiction Feb. 81/2
Object may be to mask escape of lifeship, but no such vessel detected as yet.
in Astounding Science Fiction Oct. 40/1
Well, there’s only one place where a lifeship could go out here, and that’s the wild star.
in Astounding Science Fiction Dec. 11/1
Commander Hatch looked down at his feet. ‘I was in a space can once,’ he said. ‘They don’t last forever. I—’ He let his voice trail away. Wilson looked into their faces. The cold, bleak fact was so clear in their faces that he could not ignore it. He was forced to recognize the fact that a lifeship is no spacecraft. A lifeship is a flimsy tin can, as spaceworthy as an open raft on the broad ocean, as spaceworthy as an umbrella in a windstorm.
Spacemen Lost in Startling Stories Fall 53/1
Then we’ll tell him that we accept his proposal, and let him take us to the life-ship. Once we have examined the engine, we should be able to see whether or not it is in working order.
Tomorrow People in the Visitor 87
‘To a lifeship!’ brayed the Albenareth crewman, almost buzzing the human words. ‘Turn about. Go forward! Not to the stern.’
Lifeboat (1977) 2
They cut loose the kzin lifeship, with Halloran inside, five hours later, and then turned a shielded ion drive against their orbital path to drop inward and lose themselves in the Belt.
Man Who Would Be Kzin in L. Niven et al. Man-Kzin Wars IV 272
Interstellar cruisers had learned through their own disasters to have twice the number of emergency lifeships on board than they needed, ostensibly because one part of the ship might be impossible to reach. But in reality, they wanted to show that they had no liability should something go horribly, awfully wrong.
Assassins in Love xxiv. 142
Edmond Hamilton, "Evans of the Earth-Guard"
Research HistoryMichael Quinion submitted a 1991 cite from "The Man Who Would be Kzin" by Greg Bear and S.M. Stirling.
Treesong submitted a cite from a 1977 reprint of Harry Harrison and Gordon Dickson's "The Lifeship"; Malcolm Farmer checked the 1975 magazine version and it uses "lifeboat" throughout instead of "lifeship".
Enoch Forrester submitted a 1944 cite from George O. Smith's "Latent Image".
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 1973 cite from Julian Gregory and Roger Price's "The Tomorrow People in The Visitor".
Enoch Forrester submitted a cite from a reprint of James Blish's "Earthman, Come Home"; Mike Christie verified the cite in the 1950 first magazine appearance.
Mike Christie submitted a 1946 cite from John MacDougal's "Chaos, Coordinated".
Mike Christie submitted a 1941 cite from Harry Walton's "Doom Ship". Mike Christie submitted a 1940 cite from Harry Walton's "Moon of Exile".
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 2012 cite from Kristine Kathryn Rusch, writing pseudonymously.
Fred Galvin submitted a 1930 cite from Edmond Hamilton's "Evans of the Earth-Guard", in Air Wonder Stories.
Last modified 2022-02-26 15:24:06
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.