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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

Site updated on 17 January 2022
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Rolfe, Frederick

(1860-1913) UK author and eccentric, known as much for claiming the name Baron Corvo as for his writing. The nine Reviews of Unwritten Books (February-June 1903 The Monthly Review; plus one added piece December 1904 Gentleman's Magazine; coll 1985-1988 4vols each chap) with Sholto Douglas are an early articulation of the concept of Alternate History, if only in a nonfiction format (one of the reviews, for instance, being of "Machiavelli's Despatches from the South African Campaign"). Hubert's ...


Film (1961; vt I Was a Teenage Gorilla). Anglo Amalgamated/American International Pictures. Produced by Herman Cohen, Nathan Cohen and Stuart Levy (uncredited). Directed by John Lemont. Written by Herman Cohen and Aben Kandel from their original idea. Cast includes Jess Conrad, Claire Gordon, Michael Gough and Margo Johns. 90 minutes. Colour. / Botanist Dr Charles Decker (Gough) is discovered alive after disappearing in an aeroplane crash in Africa. Returning to a warm welcome in London, he ...

Holy War

Board and counter Wargame (1979). Metagaming Concepts. Designed by Lynn Willis. / Holy War's framing narrative describes the creation of a Pocket Universe in which time passes at a greatly accelerated rate by a vast alien entity. After the construction is complete, this being realizes that life has appeared on one of the planets orbiting the handful of stars in its microverse. While the entity is considering the ethical implications of this development, an intelligent species evolves, ...

Bacon, Paul

(1923-2015) US graphic artist active from the 1940s until about a year before his death, and responsible for an estimated 6500 book-cover designs (plus some 200 for jazz LPs). Inevitably, with such a huge total of covers, quite a number were for sf authors, well over seventy of them, some of whom published several books with his covers; his first in the genre is probably that for Gunner Cade (1952) by Cyril Judd. He became known for the "Big Book Look", whereby a cover would feature the title ...

Anglin, Norman

(1891-1944) UK poet and playwright who served in World War One; his Near Future play Poison Gas (1928) dramatizes the issue of Poison gas, its use (via Weather Control devices), and hopes of its prevention, a topic much discussed in the years after the War. Tragically, in a strife-torn starvation-prone 1950, a guilt-ridden industrialist fails to prevent Disaster, and inadvertently initiates World War Two. [JC]

Nicholls, Peter

(1939-2018) Australian editor and author, primarily a critic and historian of sf through his creation and editing of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction [see below]; resident in the UK 1970-1988, in Australia from 1988; worked as an academic in English literature (1962-1968, 1971-1977), scripted television documentaries, was a Harkness Fellow in Film-making (1968-1970) in the USA, worked as a publisher's editor (1982-1983), often broadcast film and book reviews on BBC Radio from 1974 and ...

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