Comical History of the States and Empires of the Moon  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Other World: Comical History of the States and Empires of the Moon (L’Autre monde ou les états et empires de la Lune) was the first of three satirical novels written by Cyrano de Bergerac, that are considered among the first science fiction stories. Arthur C. Clarke credited this book with being the first example of a rocket-powered space flight, and for inventing the ramjet. It was published after the author's death, in 1657.

The Story

Cyrano narrates the book in the first person, as if relating his own travels. In it, he uses "firecrackers" to propel himself to the moon, where he meets inhabitants who have four legs, musical voices, and amazing weapons that cook game for a meal while it's being shot.

The Impact

Inspired by Lucian's proto-science fiction work True History or True Story, The Other World went on to influence many other works seen as early science fiction, including Jonathan Swift's novel Gulliver's Travels, which is also an example of fantastic voyages exploring both contemporary social commentary, and some ideas of the unknown and "modern" science.

See also

French science fiction



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Comical History of the States and Empires of the Moon" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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