H. G. Wells

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H. G. Wells
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| birth_place = Bromley, Kent, England1946139df=y}}| death_place = Regent's Park, London, England| occupation = Novelist, teacher, historian, journalist| alma_mater = Royal College of Science (Imperial College London)| years_active = 1895–1946| genre = Science fiction (notably social science fiction), social realism| subject = World history, progress| spouse = Isabel Mary Wells(1891–1894, divorced)Amy Catherine Robbins (1895–1927, her death)G. P. Wells>George Phillip "G. P." Wells (1901–1985)Frank Richard Wells (1903–1982)Anna-Jane Kennard (1909–2010HTTP://TROVE.NLA.GOV.AU/WORK/109159974?Q&VERSIONID=122604435 >TITLE=LOST DAUGHTER OF WELLS' PASSION. (WRITER H. G. WELLS) – VERSION DETAILS – TROVE DATE=1996-08-11 PUBLISHER=AMEMORYTREE.CO.NZ ACCESSDATE=2014-03-25, )Anthony West (1914–1987)Joseph Wells (cricketer)>Joseph Wells (father)Sarah Neal (mother) {edih} }}Herbert George Wells"Wells, H. G.". Revised 18 May 2015. The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction ( Retrieved 2015-08-22. Entry by 'JC/BS', John Clute and Brian Stableford. (21 September 1866 – 13 August 1946) was an English writer. He was prolific in many genres, writing dozens of novels, short stories, and works of social commentary, history, satire, biography, and autobiography, and even including two books on recreational war games. He is now best remembered for his science fiction novels and is often called the "father of science fiction", along with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback.Adam Charles Roberts (2000), "The History of Science Fiction", page 48. In Science Fiction, Routledge, {{ISBN|0-415-19204-8}}.BOOK, Siegel, Mark Richard, 1988, Hugo Gernsback, Father of Modern Science Fiction: With Essays on Frank Herbert and Bram Stoker, Borgo Pr, 0-89370-174-2, {{efn|name=sfhof}}During his own lifetime, however, he was most prominent as a forward-looking, even prophetic social critic who devoted his literary talents to the development of a progressive vision on a global scale. A futurist, he wrote a number of utopian works and foresaw the advent of aircraft, tanks, space travel, nuclear weapons, satellite television and something resembling the World Wide Web.NEWS, HG Wells: A visionary who should be remembered for his social predictions, not just his scientific ones,weblink The Independent, 9 October 2017, His science fiction imagined time travel, alien invasion, invisibility, and biological engineering. Brian Aldiss referred to Wells as the "Shakespeare of science fiction".BOOK, Wagar, W. Warren, H. G. Wells: Traversing Time, 2004, Wesleyan University Press, 7, Wells rendered his works convincing by instilling commonplace detail alongside a single extraordinary assumption – dubbed “Wells’s law” – leading Joseph Conrad to hail him in 1898 as "O Realist of the Fantastic!".NEWS, How Hollywood fell for a British visionary,weblink 14 March 2019, The Telegraph, His most notable science fiction works include The Time Machine (1895), The Island of Doctor Moreau (1896), The Invisible Man (1897), The War of the Worlds (1898) and the military science fiction The War in the Air (1907). Wells was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature four times.Wells's earliest specialised training was in biology, and his thinking on ethical matters took place in a specifically and fundamentally Darwinian context.Robert M. Philmus and David Y. Hughes, ed., H. G. Wells: Early Writings in Science and Science Fiction (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and London: University of California Press, 1975), p. 179. He was also from an early date an outspoken socialist, often (but not always, as at the beginning of the First World War) sympathising with pacifist views. His later works became increasingly political and didactic, and he wrote little science fiction, while he sometimes indicated on official documents that his profession was that of journalist.Vincent Brome, H. G. Wells: A Biography (London, New York, and Toronto: Longmans, Green, 1951). Novels such as Kipps and The History of Mr Polly, which describe lower-middle-class life, led to the suggestion that he was a worthy successor to Charles Dickens,Vincent Brome, H. G. Wells: A Biography (London, New York, and Toronto: Longmans, Green, 1951), p. 99. but Wells described a range of social strata and even attempted, in Tono-Bungay (1909), a diagnosis of English society as a whole. Wells was a diabetic and co-founded the charity The Diabetic Association (known today as Diabetes UK) in 1934.WEB,weblink H G Wells - Author, Historian, Teacher with Type 2 Diabetes,, 2019-02-18,


Early life

Herbert George Wells was born at Atlas House, 162 High Street in Bromley, Kent,BOOK, Wells, H. G., H. G. Wells, Claeys, Gregory, Parrinder, Patrick, Gregory Claeys, Francis Wheen, Andy Sawyer, A Modern Utopia, 1905, 2005, Penguin Classics, 978-0-14-144112-2,weblink on 21 September 1866.BOOK, Parrinder, Patrick, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 2004, Oxford University Press, Called "Bertie" in the family, he was the fourth and last child of Joseph Wells (a former domestic gardener, and at the time a shopkeeper and professional cricketer) and his wife, Sarah Neal (a former domestic servant). An inheritance had allowed the family to acquire a shop in which they sold china and sporting goods, although it failed to prosper: the stock was old and worn out, and the location was poor. Joseph Wells managed to earn a meagre income, but little of it came from the shop and he received an unsteady amount of money from playing professional cricket for the Kent county team.Smith, David C. (1986) H. G. Wells: Desperately mortal. A biography. Yale University Press, New Haven and London {{ISBN|0-300-03672-8}} Payment for skilled bowlers and batsmen came from voluntary donations afterwards, or from small payments from the clubs where matches were played.A defining incident of young Wells's life was an accident in 1874 that left him bedridden with a broken leg. To pass the time he began to read books from the local library, brought to him by his father. He soon became devoted to the other worlds and lives to which books gave him access; they also stimulated his desire to write. Later that year he entered Thomas Morley's Commercial Academy, a private school founded in 1849, following the bankruptcy of Morley's earlier school. The teaching was erratic, the curriculum mostly focused, Wells later said, on producing copperplate handwriting and doing the sort of sums useful to tradesmen. Wells continued at Morley's Academy until 1880. In 1877, his father, Joseph Wells, suffered a fractured thigh. The accident effectively put an end to Joseph's career as a cricketer, and his subsequent earnings as a shopkeeper were not enough to compensate for the loss of the primary source of family income.MAGAZINE, Sep. 21, 1866: Wells Springs Forth,weblink Wired, 9 October 2017, File:Uppark-Sfront-01.jpg|thumb|left|Wells spent the winter of 1887-88 convalescing at Uppark, where his mother, Sarah, was housekeeper.BOOK, Nairn, Ian, Ian Nairn, Pevsner, Nikolaus, Nikolaus Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Sussex, Penguin BooksPenguin BooksNo longer able to support themselves financially, the family instead sought to place their sons as apprentices in various occupations.NEWS, HG Wells: prophet of free love,weblink The Guardian, 11 October 2017, From 1880 to 1883, Wells had an unhappy apprenticeship as a draper at the Southsea Drapery Emporium, Hyde's. His experiences at Hyde's, where he worked a thirteen-hour day and slept in a dormitory with other apprentices, later inspired his novels The Wheels of Chance, The History of Mr Polly, and Kipps, which portray the life of a draper's apprentice as well as providing a critique of society's distribution of wealth.BOOK, Batchelor, John, H. G. Wells, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, England, 1985, 2, 0-521-27804-X, Wells's parents had a turbulent marriage, owing primarily to his mother's being a Protestant and his father's being a freethinker. When his mother returned to work as a lady's maid (at Uppark, a country house in Sussex), one of the conditions of work was that she would not be permitted to have living space for her husband and children. Thereafter, she and Joseph lived separate lives, though they never divorced and remained faithful to each other. As a consequence, Herbert's personal troubles increased as he subsequently failed as a draper and also, later, as a chemist's assistant. However, Uppark had a magnificent library in which he immersed himself, reading many classic works, including Plato's Republic, Thomas More's Utopia, and the works of Daniel Defoe.BOOK, Pilkington, Ace G., Science Fiction and Futurism: Their Terms and Ideas, 2017, McFarland, 137, This would be the beginning of Wells's venture into literature.


(File:H. G. Wells, c.1890.jpg|thumb|Wells studying in London {{Circa}} 1890)In October 1879, Wells's mother arranged through a distant relative, Arthur Williams, for him to join the National School at Wookey in Somerset as a pupil–teacher, a senior pupil who acted as a teacher of younger children.BOOK, Wells, Geoffrey H., The Works of H. G. Wells, Routledge, London, 1925, xvi, 458934085, 0-86012-096-1, In December that year, however, Williams was dismissed for irregularities in his qualifications and Wells was returned to Uppark. After a short apprenticeship at a chemist in nearby Midhurst and an even shorter stay as a boarder at Midhurst Grammar School, he signed his apprenticeship papers at Hyde's. In 1883, Wells persuaded his parents to release him from the apprenticeship, taking an opportunity offered by Midhurst Grammar School again to become a pupil–teacher; his proficiency in Latin and science during his earlier short stay had been remembered.The years he spent in Southsea had been the most miserable of his life to that point, but his good fortune at securing a position at Midhurst Grammar School meant that Wells could continue his self-education in earnest. The following year, Wells won a scholarship to the Normal School of Science (later the Royal College of Science in South Kensington, now part of Imperial College London) in London, studying biology under Thomas Henry Huxley. As an alumnus, he later helped to set up the Royal College of Science Association, of which he became the first president in 1909. Wells studied in his new school until 1887, with a weekly allowance of 21 shillings (a guinea) thanks to his scholarship. This ought to have been a comfortable sum of money (at the time many working class families had "round about a pound a week" as their entire household income)Reeves, M.S. Round About a Pound a Week. New York: Garland Pub., 1980. {{ISBN|0-8240-0119-2}}. Some of the text is available online. yet in his Experiment in Autobiography, Wells speaks of constantly being hungry, and indeed photographs of him at the time show a youth who is very thin and malnourished.BOOK, Brome, Vincent, H. G. Wells, 2008, House of Stratus, 180, File:H G Wells - Sandgate - Project Gutenberg eText 13715.png|thumbnail|left|upright|H. G. Wells in 1907 at the door of his house at Sandgate ]]He soon entered the Debating Society of the school. These years mark the beginning of his interest in a possible reformation of society. At first approaching the subject through Plato's Republic, he soon turned to contemporary ideas of socialism as expressed by the recently formed Fabian Society and free lectures delivered at Kelmscott House, the home of William Morris. He was also among the founders of The Science School Journal, a school magazine that allowed him to express his views on literature and society, as well as trying his hand at fiction; a precursor to his novel The Time Machine was published in the journal under the title The Chronic Argonauts. The school year 1886–87 was the last year of his studies.BOOK, Batchelor, John, H. G. Wells, 1985, CUP Archive, 164, During 1888, Wells stayed in Stoke-on-Trent, living in Basford. The unique environment of The Potteries was certainly an inspiration. He wrote in a letter to a friend from the area that "the district made an immense impression on me." The inspiration for some of his descriptions in The War of the Worlds is thought to have come from his short time spent here, seeing the iron foundry furnaces burn over the city, shooting huge red light into the skies. His stay in The Potteries also resulted in the macabre short story "The Cone" (1895, contemporaneous with his famous The Time Machine), set in the north of the city.BOOK, John R., Hammond, A Preface to H G Wells,weblink 22 July 2014, Routledge, 978-1-317-87701-1, 90–, After teaching for some time, he was briefly on the staff of Holt Academy in WalesNEWS, 2016-10-03, Teaching spell near Wrexham inspired one of the nation's greatest science fiction writers, Jamie, Bowman, The Leader (Welsh newspaper), The Leader, Wrexham, 2018-05-13,weblink – Wells found it necessary to supplement his knowledge relating to educational principles and methodology and entered the College of Preceptors (College of Teachers). He later received his Licentiate and Fellowship FCP diplomas from the College. It was not until 1890 that Wells earned a Bachelor of Science degree in zoology from the University of London External Programme. In 1889–90, he managed to find a post as a teacher at Henley House School in London, where he taught A. A. Milne (whose father ran the school).JOURNAL,weblink 1989, Hampstead: Education, A History of the County of Middlesex, 9, 159–169, 2008-06-09, WEB,weblink A. A. Milne, Books and Writers (, Petri, Liukkonen, Kuusankoski Public Library, Finland,weblink" title="">weblink 2014-02-22, yes, His first published work was a Text-Book of Biology in two volumes (1893).BOOK, H. G. Wells Under Revision: Proceedings of the International H. G. Wells Symposium, London, July 1986, 1990, Associated University Presse, 123, Upon leaving the Normal School of Science, Wells was left without a source of income. His aunt Mary—his father's sister-in-law—invited him to stay with her for a while, which solved his immediate problem of accommodation. During his stay at his aunt's residence, he grew increasingly interested in her daughter, Isabel. He would later go on to court her. To earn money, he began writing short humorous articles for journals such as The Pall Mall Gazette, later collecting these in volume form as Select Conversations with an Uncle (1895) and Certain Personal Matters (1897). So prolific did Wells become at this mode of journalism that many of his early pieces remain unidentified. According to David C Smith, "Most of Wells's occasional pieces have not been collected, and many have not even been identified as his. Wells did not automatically receive the byline his reputation demanded until after 1896 or so ... As a result, many of his early pieces are unknown. It is obvious that many early Wells items have been lost."BOOK, David C Smith, 1986, H. G. Wells: Desperately Mortal: A Biography, Yale University Press, New Haven, 35, 0300036728, His success with these shorter pieces encouraged him to write book-length work, and he published his first novel, The Time Machine, in 1895.BOOK, Hammond, John R., 2004, H. G. Wells's The Time Machine: A Reference Guide, Westport, Conn., Praeger, 50,

Personal life

File:MayburyRoad h.g.wells house.jpg|thumb|upright|141 Maybury Rd, WokingWokingIn 1891, Wells married his cousinWEB,weblink They Did What? 15 Famous People Who Actually Married Their Cousins, en-US, 2019-08-24, Isabel Mary Wells (1865–1931; from 1902 Isabel Mary Smith). The couple agreed to separate in 1894, when he had fallen in love with one of his students, Amy Catherine Robbins (1872–1927; later known as Jane), with whom he moved to Woking, Surrey in May 1895. They lived in a rented house, 'Lynton', (now No.141) Maybury Road in the town centre for just under 18 monthsBOOK, Wells In Woking: 150th Anniversary 1866–2016: Free Souvenir Programme,weblink Woking, Surrey, Woking Borough Council, 4–5, 2016, 5 March 2017, and married at St Pancras register office in October 1895.Batchelor (1985: 165) His short period in Woking was perhaps the most creative and productive of his whole writing career, for while there he planned and wrote The War of the Worlds and The Time Machine, completed The Island of Doctor Moreau, wrote and published The Wonderful Visit and The Wheels of Chance, and began writing two other early books, When the Sleeper Wakes and Love and Mr Lewisham.In the run-up to the 143rd anniversary of Wells's birth, Google published a cartoon riddle series with the solution being the coordinates of Woking's nearby Horsell Common—the location of the Martian landings in The War Of The Worlds—described in newspaper article by WEB,weblink HG Wells – Google reveals answer to teaser doodles, Schofield, Jack, 21 September 2009, The Guardian, 5 March 2017, In late summer 1896, Wells and Jane moved to a larger house in Worcester Park, near Kingston upon Thames, for two years; this lasted until his poor health took them to Sandgate, near Folkestone, where he constructed a large family home, Spade House, in 1901. He had two sons with Jane: George Philip (known as "Gip"; 1901–1985) and Frank Richard (1903–1982).BOOK, Wager, Warren W., H. G. Wells: Traversing Time, 2004, Wesleyan University Press, 295, Jane died 6 October 1927, in Dunmow, at the age of 55.Wells had affairs with a significant number of women.BOOK, Lynn, Andrea, Shadow Lovers: The Last Affairs of H. G. Wells, 2001, Westview, Boulder, CO, 978-0-8133-3394-6, 10; 14; 47 et sec,weblink In December 1909, he had a daughter, Anna-Jane, with the writer Amber Reeves,WEB,weblink A room of her own, Margaret Drabble, The Guardian, 1 April 2005, whose parents, William and Maud Pember Reeves, he had met through the Fabian Society. Amber had married the barrister G. R. Blanco White in July of that year, as co-arranged by Wells. After Beatrice Webb voiced disapproval of Wells' "sordid intrigue" with Amber, he responded by lampooning Beatrice Webb and her husband Sidney Webb in his 1911 novel The New Machiavelli as 'Altiora and Oscar Bailey', a pair of short-sighted, bourgeois manipulators. Between 1910–1913, novelist Elizabeth von Arnim was one of his mistresses.Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, online edition (UK library card required): Arnim, Mary Annette [May] von Accessed 2014-03-05 In 1914, he had a son, Anthony West (1914–1987), by the novelist and feminist Rebecca West, 26 years his junior.WEB,weblink H. G. Wells, Books and Writers (, Petri, Liukkonen, Kuusankoski Public Library, Finland,weblink" title="">weblink 21 February 2015, yes, In 1920–21, and intermittently until his death, he had a love affair with the American birth control activist Margaret Sanger."The Passionate Friends: H. G. Wells and Margaret Sanger", at the Margaret Sanger Paper Project. Between 1924 and 1933 he partnered with the 22-year younger Dutch adventurer and writer Odette Keun, with whom he lived in Lou Pidou, a house they built together in Grasse, France. Wells dedicated his longest book to her (The World of William Clissold, 1926).Kevin Dixon, Odette Keun, HG Wells and the Third Way, The PRSD, July 20, 2104. When visiting Maxim Gorky in Russia 1920, he had slept with Gorky's mistress Moura Budberg, then still Countess Benckendorf and 27 years his junior. In 1933, when she left Gorky and emigrated to London, their relationship renewed and she cared for him through his final illness. Wells asked her to marry him repeatedly, but Budberg strongly rejected his proposals.Nina Renata Aron, The impossibly glamorous life of this Russian baroness spy needs to be a movie; Moura Budberg counted H.G. Wells and Maxim Gorky as lovers,, 2017Michael Dirda, Moura? Moura Budberg? Now where have I heard that name before?, review of Nina Berberova's The Dangerous Life of the Baroness Budberg, in the Washington Post, May 22, 2005In Experiment in Autobiography (1934), Wells wrote: "I was never a great amorist, though I have loved several people very deeply".BOOK, H. G. Wells: Experiment in Autobiography,weblink J. B. Lippincott Co., New York, 1934, Herbert G., Wells, David Lodge's novel A Man of Parts (2011)—a 'narrative based on factual sources' (author's note)—gives a convincing and generally sympathetic account of Wells's relations with the women mentioned above, and others.BOOK, Lodge, David, A Man of Parts, 2011, Random House, Director Simon Wells (born 1961), the author's great-grandson, was a consultant on the future scenes in Back to the Future Part II (1989).NEWS, Simon Wells,weblink British Film Institute, 22 October 2017,


One of the ways that Wells expressed himself was through his drawings and sketches. One common location for these was the endpapers and title pages of his own diaries, and they covered a wide variety of topics, from political commentary to his feelings toward his literary contemporaries and his current romantic interests. During his marriage to Amy Catherine, whom he nicknamed Jane, he drew a considerable number of pictures, many of them being overt comments on their marriage. During this period, he called these pictures "picshuas".WEB,weblink H. G. Wells' cartoons, a window on his second marriage, focus of new book | Archives | News Bureau, University of Illinois, 31 May 2006, 10 June 2012, These picshuas have been the topic of study by Wells scholars for many years, and in 2006, a book was published on the subject.Rinkel, Gene and Margaret. The Picshuas of H. G. Wells: A burlesque diary. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2006. {{ISBN|0-252-03045-1}} (cloth : acid-free paper).


File:Woking tripod.JPG|thumb|right|upright|Statue of a tripod from The War of the Worlds in Woking, England. The book is a seminal depiction of a conflict between mankind and an extraterrestrial race.]]Some of his early novels, called "scientific romances", invented several themes now classic in science fiction in such works as The Time Machine, The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Invisible Man, The War of the Worlds, When the Sleeper Wakes, and The First Men in the Moon. He also wrote realistic novels that received critical acclaim, including Kipps and a critique of English culture during the Edwardian period, Tono-Bungay. Wells also wrote dozens of short stories and novellas, including, "The Flowering of the Strange Orchid", which helped bring the full impact of Darwin's revolutionary botanical ideas to a wider public, and was followed by many later successes such as "The Country of the Blind" (1904)."British Journal for the History of Science". Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 17 June 2016According to James Gunn, one of Wells's major contributions to the science fiction genre was his approach, which he referred to as his "new system of ideas".The Man Who Invented Tomorrow In 1902, when Arnold Bennett was writing a long article for Cosmopolitan about Wells as a serious writer, Wells expressed his hope that Bennett would stress his "new system of ideas". Wells developed a theory to justify the way he wrote (he was fond of theories), and these theories helped others write in similar ways. In his opinion, the author should always strive to make the story as credible as possible, even if both the writer and the reader knew certain elements are impossible, allowing the reader to accept the ideas as something that could really happen, today referred to as "the plausible impossible" and "suspension of disbelief". While neither invisibility nor time travel was new in speculative fiction, Wells added a sense of realism to the concepts which the readers were not familiar with. He conceived the idea of using a vehicle that allows an operator to travel purposely and selectively forwards or backwards in time. The term "time machine", coined by Wells, is now almost universally used to refer to such a vehicle. He explained that while writing The Time Machine, he realized that "the more impossible the story I had to tell, the more ordinary must be the setting, and the circumstances in which I now set the Time Traveller were all that I could imagine of solid upper-class comforts."WEB,weblink The Time Machine – Scientists and Gentlemen – WriteWork,, In "Wells's Law", a science fiction story should contain only a single extraordinary assumption. Being aware the notion of magic as something real had disappeared from society, he, therefore, used scientific ideas and theories as a substitute for magic to justify the impossible. Wells's best-known statement of the "law" appears in his introduction to The Scientific Romances of H. G. Wells (1933),As soon as the magic trick has been done the whole business of the fantasy writer is to keep everything else human and real. Touches of prosaic detail are imperative and a rigorous adherence to the hypothesis. Any extra fantasy outside the cardinal assumption immediately gives a touch of irresponsible silliness to the invention.BOOK, D. Behlkar, Ratnakar, Science Fiction: Fantasy and Reality, 2009, Atlantic Publishers & Dist, 19, Dr. Griffin / The Invisible Man is a brilliant research scientist who discovers a method of invisibility, but finds himself unable to reverse the process. An enthusiast of random and irresponsible violence, Griffin has become an iconic character in horror fiction.BOOK, The Science of Fiction and the Fiction of Science: Collected Essays on SF Storytelling and the Gnostic Imagination, 2009, McFarland, 41, 42, The Island of Doctor Moreau sees a shipwrecked man left on the island home of Doctor Moreau, a mad scientist who creates human-like hybrid beings from animals via vivisection.WEB, Novels: The Island of Doctor Moreau,weblink 16 October 2017, The earliest depiction of uplift, the novel deals with a number of philosophical themes, including pain and cruelty, moral responsibility, human identity, and human interference with nature.WEB,weblink The Island of Doctor Moreau: Original and Unabridged, Barnes & Noble, Barnes & Noble, Though Tono-Bungay is not a science-fiction novel, radioactive decay plays a small but consequential role in it. Radioactive decay plays a much larger role in The World Set Free (1914). This book contains what is surely his biggest prophetic "hit", with the first description of a nuclear weapon. Scientists of the day were well aware that the natural decay of radium releases energy at a slow rate over thousands of years. The rate of release is too slow to have practical utility, but the total amount released is huge. Wells's novel revolves around an (unspecified) invention that accelerates the process of radioactive decay, producing bombs that explode with no more than the force of ordinary high explosives—but which "continue to explode" for days on end. "Nothing could have been more obvious to the people of the earlier twentieth century", he wrote, "than the rapidity with which war was becoming impossible ... [but] they did not see it until the atomic bombs burst in their fumbling hands".BOOK, Wells, Herbert George, The Last War: A World Set Free, 2001, University of Nebraska Press, XIX, In 1932, the physicist and conceiver of nuclear chain reaction Leó Szilárd read The World Set Free (the same year Sir James Chadwick discovered the neutron), a book which he said made a great impression on him.BOOK, Richard Rhodes, 1986, The Making of the Atomic Bomb, Simon & Schuster, New York, 24, 0-684-81378-5, File:H G Wells crater 5163 med.jpg|thumb|left|The H. G. Wells crater, located on the far side of the Moon, was named after the author of The First Men in the MoonThe First Men in the MoonWells also wrote non-fiction. His first non-fiction bestseller was Anticipations of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress upon Human Life and Thought (1901). When originally serialised in a magazine it was subtitled "An Experiment in Prophecy", and is considered his most explicitly futuristic work. It offered the immediate political message of the privileged sections of society continuing to bar capable men from other classes from advancement until war would force a need to employ those most able, rather than the traditional upper classes, as leaders. Anticipating what the world would be like in the year 2000, the book is interesting both for its hits (trains and cars resulting in the dispersion of populations from cities to suburbs; moral restrictions declining as men and women seek greater sexual freedom; the defeat of German militarism, and the existence of a European Union) and its misses (he did not expect successful aircraft before 1950, and averred that "my imagination refuses to see any sort of submarine doing anything but suffocate its crew and founder at sea").WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink 20 May 2009, Annual HG Wells Award for Outstanding Contributions to Transhumanism,, 20 May 2009, 10 June 2012, BOOK, Turner, Frank Miller, Contesting Cultural Authority: Essays in Victorian Intellectual Life, 1993, Cambridge University Press, 0-521-37257-7, 219–20, Public Science in Britain 1880–1919, His bestselling two-volume work, The Outline of History (1920), began a new era of popularised world history. It received a mixed critical response from professional historians.WEB,weblink The Outline of History—H. G. Wells,, 20 April 2003, 21 September 2009, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 30 April 2009, However, it was very popular amongst the general population and made Wells a rich man. Many other authors followed with "Outlines" of their own in other subjects. He reprised his Outline in 1922 with a much shorter popular work, A Short History of the World, a history book praised by Albert Einstein,BOOK, Einstein, Albert, 1994, Education and World Peace, A Message to the Progressive Education Association, November 23, 1934, Ideas and Opinions: With An Introduction by Alan Lightman, Based on Mein Weltbild, edited by Carl Seelig, and Other Sources, New Translations and Revisions by Sonja Bargmann, The Modern Library, New York, 63, and two long efforts, The Science of Life (1930) and The Work, Wealth and Happiness of Mankind (1931).H. G. Wells, The Work, Wealth and Happiness of Mankind (London: William Heinemann, 1932), p. 812.WEB,weblink Wells, H. G. 1922. A Short History of the World,, 21 September 2009, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 19 October 2009, The "Outlines" became sufficiently common for James Thurber to parody the trend in his humorous essay, "An Outline of Scientists"—indeed, Wells's Outline of History remains in print with a new 2005 edition, while A Short History of the World has been re-edited (2006).BOOK, Wells, H. G., A Short History of the World, 2006, Penguin UK, (File:H. G. Wells Daily Mirror.jpg|thumb|upright|H. G. Wells {{Circa}} 1918|right)From quite early in Wells's career, he sought a better way to organise society and wrote a number of Utopian novels. The first of these was A Modern Utopia (1905), which shows a worldwide utopia with "no imports but meteorites, and no exports at all";A Modern Utopia two travellers from our world fall into its alternate history. The others usually begin with the world rushing to catastrophe, until people realise a better way of living: whether by mysterious gases from a comet causing people to behave rationally and abandoning a European war (In the Days of the Comet (1906)), or a world council of scientists taking over, as in The Shape of Things to Come (1933, which he later adapted for the 1936 Alexander Korda film, Things to Come). This depicted, all too accurately, the impending World War, with cities being destroyed by aerial bombs. He also portrayed the rise of fascist dictators in The Autocracy of Mr Parham (1930) and The Holy Terror (1939). Men Like Gods (1923) is also a utopian novel. Wells in this period was regarded as an enormously influential figure; the critic Malcolm Cowley stated: "by the time he was forty, his influence was wider than any other living English writer".Cowley, Malcolm. "Outline of Wells's History". The New Republic Vol. 81 Issue 1041, 14 November 1934 (pp. 22–23).Wells contemplates the ideas of nature and nurture and questions humanity in books such as The Island of Doctor Moreau. Not all his scientific romances ended in a Utopia, and Wells also wrote a dystopian novel, When the Sleeper Wakes (1899, rewritten as The Sleeper Awakes, 1910), which pictures a future society where the classes have become more and more separated, leading to a revolt of the masses against the rulers.William Steinhoff, "Utopia Reconsidered: Comments on 1984" 153, in Eric S. Rabkin, Martin H. Greenberg, and Joseph D. Olander, eds., No Place Else: Explorations in Utopian and Dystopian Fiction. {{ISBN|0-8093-1113-5}}. The Island of Doctor Moreau is even darker. The narrator, having been trapped on an island of animals vivisected (unsuccessfully) into human beings, eventually returns to England; like Gulliver on his return from the Houyhnhnms, he finds himself unable to shake off the perceptions of his fellow humans as barely civilised beasts, slowly reverting to their animal natures.Wells, H. G. (2005). The Island of Dr Moreau. "Fear and Trembling". Penguin UK.Wells also wrote the preface for the first edition of W. N. P. Barbellion's diaries, The Journal of a Disappointed Man, published in 1919. Since "Barbellion" was the real author's pen name, many reviewers believed Wells to have been the true author of the Journal; Wells always denied this, despite being full of praise for the diaries."A Barbellion Chronology". Quotable Barbellion. Retrieved 21 October 2017File:H. G. Wells-TIME-1926.jpg|thumb|left|upright|H. G. Wells, one day before his 60th birthday, on the front cover of Time magazine, 20 September 1926]]In 1927, a Canadian teacher and writer Florence Deeks unsuccessfully sued Wells for infringement of copyright and breach of trust, claiming that much of The Outline of History had been plagiarised from her unpublished manuscript,At the time of the alleged infringement in 1919–20, unpublished works were protected in Canada under common law.JOURNAL, Magnusson, Denis N., Spring 2004, Hell Hath No Fury: Copyright Lawyers' Lessons from Deeks v. Wells, Queen's Law Journal, 29, 692, note 39, The Web of the World's Romance, which had spent nearly nine months in the hands of Wells's Canadian publisher, Macmillan Canada.JOURNAL, Magnusson, Denis N., Spring 2004, Hell Hath No Fury: Copyright Lawyers' Lessons from Deeks v. Wells, Queen's Law Journal, 29, 682, However, it was sworn on oath at the trial that the manuscript remained in Toronto in the safekeeping of Macmillan, and that Wells did not even know it existed, let alone had seen it.Clarke, Arthur C. (March 1978). "Professor Irwin and the Deeks Affair". p. 91. Science Fiction Studies. SF-TH Inc. 5 The court found no proof of copying, and decided the similarities were due to the fact that the books had similar nature and both writers had access to the same sources.{{sfn|Florence A. Deeks v H.G. Wells... Supreme Court|p=9}} In 2000, A. B. McKillop, a professor of history at Carleton University, produced a book on the case, The Spinster & The Prophet: Florence Deeks, H. G. Wells, and the Mystery of the Purloined Past.McKillop, A. B. (2000) Macfarlane Walter & Ross, Toronto. According to McKillop, the lawsuit was unsuccessful due to the prejudice against a woman suing a well-known and famous male author, and he paints a detailed story based on the circumstantial evidence of the case.Deeks, Florence A. (1930s) "Plagiarism?" unpublished typescript, copy in Deeks Fonds, Baldwin Room, Toronto Reference Library, Toronto, Ontario. In 2004, Denis N. Magnusson, Professor Emeritus of the Faculty of Law, Queen's University, Ontario, published an article on Deeks v. Wells. This re-examines the case in relation to McKillop's book. While having some sympathy for Deeks, he argues that she had a weak case that was not well presented, and though she may have met with sexism from her lawyers, she received a fair trial, adding that the law applied is essentially the same law that would be applied to a similar case today (i.e., 2004).JOURNAL, Magnusson, Denis N., Spring 2004, Hell Hath No Fury: Copyright Lawyers' Lessons from Deeks v. Wells, Queen's Law Journal, 29, 680, 684, In 1933, Wells predicted in The Shape of Things to Come that the world war he feared would begin in January 1940,BOOK, The shape of things to come: the ultimate revolution, Penguin 2005, 1933, 0-14-144104-6, 208, 9. The Last War Cyclone, 1940–50, a prediction which ultimately came true four months early, in September 1939, with the outbreak of World War II.BOOK, Wagar, W. Warren, W. Warren Wagar, H. G. Wells: traversing time, 2004, Wesleyan University Press, Middletown, Conn, 0-8195-6725-6, 209, In 1936, before the Royal Institution, Wells called for the compilation of a constantly growing and changing World Encyclopaedia, to be reviewed by outstanding authorities and made accessible to every human being. In 1938, he published a collection of essays on the future organisation of knowledge and education, World Brain, including the essay "The Idea of a Permanent World Encyclopaedia".Wells, H. G. (1938). World Brain. London: Methuen & Co., Ltd.; Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Doran & Co., Inc. Ebook: World BrainFile:H. G. Wells (5026568202).jpg|thumb|right|Plaque by the H. G. Wells Society at Chiltern Court, Baker Street in the City of WestminsterCity of WestminsterPrior to 1933, Wells's books were widely read in Germany and Austria, and most of his science fiction works had been translated shortly after publication. By 1933, he had attracted the attention of German officials because of his criticism of the political situation in Germany, and on 10 May 1933, Wells's books were burned by the Nazi youth in Berlin's Opernplatz, and his works were banned from libraries and book stores.Patrick Parrinder and John S. Partington (2005). The Reception of H. G. Wells in Europe. pp. 106–108. Bloomsbury Publishing. Wells, as president of PEN International (Poets, Essayists, Novelists), angered the Nazis by overseeing the expulsion of the German PEN club from the international body in 1934 following the German PEN's refusal to admit non-Aryan writers to its membership. At a PEN conference in Ragusa, Wells refused to yield to Nazi sympathisers who demanded that the exiled author Ernst Toller be prevented from speaking. Near the end of the World War II, Allied forces discovered that the SS had compiled lists of people slated for immediate arrest during the invasion of Britain in the abandoned Operation Sea Lion, with Wells included in the alphabetical list of "The Black Book".Wells, Frank. H. G. Wells—A Pictorial Biography. London: Jupiter Books, 1977, p. 91.Seeking a more structured way to play war games, Wells also wrote Floor Games (1911) followed by Little Wars (1913), which set out rules for fighting battles with toy soldiers (miniatures).NEWS, Rundle, Michael, How H. G. Wells Invented Modern War Games 100 Years Ago,weblink The Huffington Post, 9 April 2013, Little Wars is recognised today as the first recreational war game and Wells is regarded by gamers and hobbyists as "the Father of Miniature War Gaming".The Miniatures Page. The World of Miniatures—An Overview. A pacifist prior to the First World War, Wells stated "how much better is this amiable miniature [war] than the real thing". According to Wells, the idea of the miniature war game developed from a visit by his friend Jerome K. Jerome. After dinner, Jerome began shooting down toy soldiers with a toy cannon and Wells joined in to compete.

Travels to Russia

Wells visited Russia three times: 1914, 1920 and 1934. During his second visit, he saw his old friend Maxim Gorky and with Gorky's help, met Vladimir Lenin. In his book Russia in the Shadows, Wells portrayed Russia as recovering from a total social collapse, "the completest that has ever happened to any modern social organisation."H. G. Wells, Russia in the Shadows (New York: George H. Doran, 1921), p. 21. On 23 July 1934, after visiting U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Wells went to the Soviet Union and interviewed Joseph Stalin for three hours for the New Statesman magazine, which was extremely rare at that time. He told Stalin how he had seen 'the happy faces of healthy people' in contrast with his previous visit to Moscow in 1920.WEB, H. G. Wells Interviews Joseph Stalin in 1934; Declares "I Am More to The Left Than You, Mr. Stalin",weblink Open Culture, 3 June 2018, However, he also criticised the lawlessness, class-based discrimination, state violence, and absence of free expression. Stalin enjoyed the conversation and replied accordingly. As the chairman of the London-based PEN Club, which protected the rights of authors to write without being intimidated, Wells hoped by his trip to USSR, he could win Stalin over by force of argument. Before he left, he realized that no reform was to happen in the near future.BOOK, Service, Robert, Comrades, 2007, Macmillan, London, 205, WEB, MARXISM VERSUS LIBERALISM,weblink Red Star Press Ltd., 3 June 2018,

Final years

(File:Herbert George Wells in 1943.jpg|right|thumb|upright|H. G. Wells in 1943)Wells's literary reputation declined as he spent his later years promoting causes that were rejected by most of his contemporaries as well as by younger authors whom he had previously influenced. In this connection, George Orwell described Wells as "too sane to understand the modern world".JOURNAL, Orwell, George, Wells, Hitler and the World State, Horizon, August 1941,weblink yes,weblink" title="">weblink 18 January 2016, G. K. Chesterton quipped: "Mr Wells is a born storyteller who has sold his birthright for a pot of message".Chesterton's reference is to the biblical "mess of pottage", implying that Wells had sold out his artistic birthright in mid-career: BOOK, Rolfe, Christopher, Parrinder, Patrick, H. G. Wells under revision: proceedings of the International H. G. Wells Symposium, London, July 1986, 1990, Susquehanna University Press, Selinsgrove, PA, 0-945636-05-9, 9,weblink Wells had diabetes,WEB,weblink HG Wells—Diabetes UK,, 14 April 2008, 10 June 2012, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 6 January 2011, and was a co-founder in 1934 of The Diabetic Association (now Diabetes UK, the leading charity for people with diabetes in the UK)."Diabetes UK: Our History". Retrieved 10 December 2015On 28 October 1940, on the radio station KTSA in San Antonio, Texas, Wells took part in a radio interview with Orson Welles, who two years previously had performed a famous radio adaptation of The War of the Worlds. During the interview, by Charles C Shaw, a KTSA radio host, Wells admitted his surprise at the widespread panic that resulted from the broadcast but acknowledged his debt to Welles for increasing sales of one of his "more obscure" titles.BOOK, Flynn, John L., War of the Worlds: from Wells to Spielberg by, Galactic, 978-0-9769400-0-5, Owens Mills, MD, 45, The legacy of Orson Welles and the Radio Broadcast,


File:H. G. Wells (4643946137).jpg|thumb|upright|Commemorative blue plaque at Wells' final home in Regent's ParkRegent's ParkWells died of unspecified causes on 13 August 1946, aged 79, at his home at 13 Hanover Terrace, overlooking Regent's Park, London.NEWS, H. G. Wells Dies in London,weblink St. Petersburg Times, 13 August 1946, 29 October 2008, WEB,weblink Calendar, Classics & Cheese, 12 February 2008, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 18 February 2008, In his preface to the 1941 edition of The War in the Air, Wells had stated that his epitaph should be: "I told you so. You damned fools".WEB,weblink Preface to the 1941 edition of The War in the Air, 11 February 2008, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 22 December 2008, Wells' body was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium on 16 August 1946; his ashes were subsequently scattered into the English Channel at "Old Harry Rocks".West, Anthony. H. G. Wells: Aspects of a Life, p. 153. London: Hutchinson & Co, 1984. {{ISBN|0-09-134540-5}}.A commemorative blue plaque in his honour was installed by the Greater London Council at his home in Regent's Park in 1966.WEB, H. G. Wells (1866 - 1946),weblink Blue Plaques, English Heritage,


A renowned futurist and “visionary”, Wells foresaw the advent of aircraft, tanks, space travel, nuclear weapons, satellite television and something resembling the World Wide Web. Asserting that “Wells visions of the future remain unsurpassed”, John Higgs, author of Stranger Than We Can Imagine: Making Sense of the Twentieth Century, states that in the late 19th century Wells “saw the coming century clearer than anyone else. He anticipated wars in the air, the sexual revolution, motorised transport causing the growth of suburbs and a proto-Wikipedia he called the “world brain”. He foresaw world wars creating a federalised Europe. Britain, he thought, would not fit comfortably in this New Europe and would identify more with the US and other English-speaking countries. In his novel The World Set Free, he imagined an “atomic bomb” of terrifying power that would be dropped from aeroplanes. This was an extraordinary insight for an author writing in 1913, and it made a deep impression on Winston Churchill.”In a review of The Time Machine for the New Yorker magazine, Brad Leithauser writes, “At the base of Wells’s great visionary exploit is this rational, ultimately scientific attempt to tease out the potential future consequences of present conditions—not as they might arise in a few years, or even decades, but millennia hence, epochs hence. He is world literature’s Great Extrapolator. Like no other fiction writer before him, he embraced “deep time.”NEWS, Leithauser, Brad, H. G. Wells’ ghost,weblink 20 October 2013, 18 March 2019, New Yorker,

Political views

File:Churchill V sign HU 55521.jpg|thumb|right|upright|An avid reader of Wells' books, Winston ChurchillWinston ChurchillA socialist, Wells’ contemporary political impact was limited, excluding his fiction's positivist stance on the leaps that could be made by physics towards world peace. Winston Churchill was an avid reader of Wells' books, and after they first met in 1902 they kept in touch until Wells died in 1946. As a junior minister Churchill borrowed lines from Wells for one of his most famous early landmark speeches in 1906, and as Prime Minister the phrase "the gathering storm" — used by Churchill to describe the rise of Nazi Germany — had been written by Wells in The War of the Worlds, which depicts an attack on Britain by Martians. Wells's extensive writings on equality and human rights, most notably his most influential work, The Rights of Man (1940), laid the groundwork for the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted by the United Nations shortly after his death.'Human Rights and Public Accountability in H. G. Wells' Functional World State' | John Partington. Retrieved on 9 August 2013.NEWS, The scandalous sex life of HG Wells,weblink The Telegraph, 12 September 2017, His efforts regarding the League of Nations, on which he collaborated on the project with Leonard Woolf with the booklets The Idea of a League of Nations, Prolegomena to the Study of World Organization, and The Way of the League of Nations, became a disappointment as the organization turned out to be a weak one unable to prevent the Second World War, which itself occurred towards the very end of his life and only increased the pessimistic side of his nature.Herbert Wells, The Fate of Homo Sapiens, (London: Secker & Warburg, 1939), p 89-90. In his last book Mind at the End of Its Tether (1945), he considered the idea that humanity being replaced by another species might not be a bad idea. He referred to the era between the two World Wars as "The Age of Frustration".Herbert George Wells Newsletter, Volume 2. p. 10. H. G. Wells Society, 1981

Religious views

Wells wrote in his book God the Invisible King (1917) that his idea of God did not draw upon the traditional religions of the world: This book sets out as forcibly and exactly as possible the religious belief of the writer. [Which] is a profound belief in a personal and intimate God. ... Putting the leading idea of this book very roughly, these two antagonistic typical conceptions of God may be best contrasted by speaking of one of them as God-as-Nature or the Creator, and of the other as God-as-Christ or the Redeemer. One is the great Outward God; the other is the Inmost God. The first idea was perhaps developed most highly and completely in the God of Spinoza. It is a conception of God tending to pantheism, to an idea of a comprehensive God as ruling with justice rather than affection, to a conception of aloofness and awestriking worshipfulness. The second idea, which is contradictory to this idea of an absolute God, is the God of the human heart. The writer would suggest that the great outline of the theological struggles of that phase of civilisation and world unity which produced Christianity, was a persistent but unsuccessful attempt to get these two different ideas of God into one focus.BOOK, Wells, H. G., God the Invisible King, Cassell, London, 1917, Preface, 261326125, 0-585-00604-0, Link to the online book.. Later in the work, he aligns himself with a "renascent or modern religion ... neither atheist nor Buddhist nor Mohammedan nor Christian ... [that] he has found growing up in himself".Wells (1917: "The cosmology of modern religion").Of Christianity, he said: "it is not now true for me. ... Every believing Christian is, I am sure, my spiritual brother ... but if systemically I called myself a Christian I feel that to most men I should imply too much and so tell a lie". Of other world religions, he writes: "All these religions are true for me as Canterbury Cathedral is a true thing and as a Swiss chalet is a true thing. There they are, and they have served a purpose, they have worked. Only they are not true for me to live in them. ... They do not work for me".BOOK, Wells, H. G., First & last things; a confession of faith and rules of life, 1908, Putnam, 77–80, 68958585, In The Fate of Homo Sapiens (1939), Wells criticised almost all world religions and philosophies, stating "there is no creed, no way of living left in the world at all, that really meets the needs of the time… When we come to look at them coolly and dispassionately, all the main religions, patriotic, moral and customary systems in which human beings are sheltering today, appear to be in a state of jostling and mutually destructive movement, like the houses and palaces and other buildings of some vast, sprawling city overtaken by a landslide.The Fate of Homo Sapiens, p 291.

Literary influence

File:H G Wells SWS 2906.jpg|right|thumb|upright|H. G. Wells as depicted in Gernsback's Science Wonder StoriesScience Wonder StoriesThe science fiction historian John Clute describes Wells as "the most important writer the genre has yet seen", and notes his work has been central to both British and American science fiction.John Clute, Science Fiction :The Illustrated Encyclopedia. Dorling Kindersley London, {{ISBN|0751302023}} (p. 114–15). Science fiction author and critic Algis Budrys said Wells "remains the outstanding expositor of both the hope, and the despair, which are embodied in the technology and which are the major facts of life in our world".MAGAZINE, Budrys, Algis, September 1968, Galaxy Bookshelf,weblink Galaxy Science Fiction, 187–193, He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1921, 1932, 1935, and 1946."Nomination Database: Herbert G Wells". Nobel Retrieved 19 March 2015. Wells so influenced real exploration of Mars that an impact crater on the planet was named after him.NEWS,weblink Growing up with Science Fiction, Sagan, Carl, 1978-05-28, The New York Times, 2018-12-12, SM7, en-US, 0362-4331,
In the United Kingdom, Wells's work was a key model for the British “scientific romance”, and other writers in that mode, such as Olaf Stapledon,Andy Sawyer, "[William] Olaf Stapledon (1886–1950)", in Fifty Key Figures in Science Fiction. New York: Routledge, 2010. {{ISBN|0203874706}} (pp. 205–210). J. D. Beresford,Richard Bleiler, "John Davis Beresford (1873–1947)" in Darren Harris-Fain, ed. British Fantasy and Science Fiction Writers Before World War I. Detroit, MI: Gale Research, 1997. pp. 27–34. {{ISBN|0810399415}}. S. Fowler Wright,Brian Stableford, "Against the New Gods: The Speculative Fiction of S. Fowler Wright". in Against the New Gods and Other Essays on Writers of Imaginative Fiction Wildside Press LLC, 2009 {{ISBN|1434457435}} (pp. 9–90). and Naomi Mitchison,"Mitchison, Naomi", in Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature: A Checklist, 1700–1974: With Contemporary Science Fiction Authors II. Robert Reginald, Douglas Menville, Mary A. Burgess. Detroit—Gale Research Company. {{ISBN|0810310511}} p. 1002. all drew on Wells's example. Wells was also an important influence on British science fiction of the period after the Second World War, with Arthur C. ClarkeMichael D. Sharp, Popular Contemporary Writers, Marshall Cavendish, 2005 {{ISBN|0761476016}} p. 422. and Brian AldissMichael R. Collings, Brian Aldiss. Mercer Island, WA : Starmont House, 1986. {{ISBN|0916732746}} p. 60. expressing strong admiration for Wells's work. Among contemporary British science fiction writers, Stephen Baxter, Christopher Priest and Adam Roberts have all acknowledged Wells's influence on their writing; all three are Vice-Presidents of the H. G. Wells Society. He also had a strong influence on British scientist J. B. S. Haldane, who wrote Daedalus; or, Science and the Future (1924), "The Last Judgement" and "On Being the Right Size" from the essay collection Possible Worlds (1927), and Biological Possibilities for the Human Species in the Next Ten Thousand Years (1963), which are speculations about the future of human evolution and life on other planets. Haldane gave several lectures about these topics which in turn influenced other science fiction writers.JOURNAL, 3327541, 18578028, 10.1038/embor.2008.68, 9 Suppl 1, Back to the future. Contemporary biopolitics in 1920s' British futurism, EMBO Rep, S59-63, Hughes, JJ, WEB,weblink On Being the Right Size – J. B. S. Haldane, (File:Two complete science adventure books 1951win n4.jpg|thumb|upright|Wells's works were reprinted in American science fiction magazines as late as the 1950s|left)In the United States, Hugo Gernsback reprinted most of Wells's work in the pulp magazine Amazing Stories, regarding Wells's work as "texts of central importance to the self-conscious new genre". Later American writers such as Ray Bradbury,WEB,weblink Ray Bradbury, Strand Mag, Isaac Asimov,In Memory Yet Green: The Autobiography of Isaac Asimov 1920–1954. Garden City, N. Y.: Doubleday, 1979. p. 167. Frank HerbertWEB,weblink Vertex Magazine Interview, 21 October 2012, unfit,weblink" title="">weblink 21 October 2012, with Frank Herbert, by Paul Turner, October 1973, Volume 1, Issue 4. and Ursula K. Le GuinJohn Huntington, "Utopian and Anti-Utopian Logic: H. G. Wells and his Successors". Science Fiction Studies, July 1982. all recalled being influenced by Wells's work.Sinclair Lewis's early novels were strongly influenced by Wells's realistic social novels, such as The History of Mr Polly; Lewis would also name his first son Wells after the author.MAGAZINE, The Romance of Sinclair Lewis,weblink 22 September 2017, The New York Review of Books, In an interview with The Paris Review, Vladimir Nabokov described Wells as his favourite writer when he was a boy and "a great artist."NEWS,weblink Vladimir Nabokov, The Art of Fiction No. 40, Gold, Interviewed by Herbert, The Paris Review, 2017-02-09, en, He went on to cite The Passionate Friends, Ann Veronica, The Time Machine, and The Country of the Blind as superior to anything else written by Wells's British contemporaries. In an apparent allusion to Wells's socialism and political themes, Nabokov said: "His sociological cogitations can be safely ignored, of course, but his romances and fantasies are superb."File:Herbert George Wells Postal stationery envelope Russia 2016 No 286.jpg|thumb|2016 illustrated postal envelope with an image from The War of the Worlds, Russian PostRussian PostJorge Luis Borges wrote many short pieces on Wells in which he demonstrates a deep familiarity with much of Wells's work.Borges, Jorge Luis. The Total Library. Edited by Eliot Weinberger. London: Penguin Books, 1999. Pp. 150. While Borges wrote several critical reviews, including a mostly negative review of Wells's film Things to Come,Borges, Jorge Luis. "Wells the Visionary" in The Total Library. Edited by Eliot Weinberger. London: Penguin Books, 1999. Pp. 150. he regularly treated Wells as a canonical figure of fantastic literature. Late in his life, Borges included The Invisible Man and The Time Machine in his Prologue to a Personal Library,"Jorge Luis Borges Selects 74 Books for Your Personal Library". Open culture. a curated list of 100 great works of literature that he undertook at the behest of the Argentine publishing house Emecé. Canadian author Margaret Atwood read Wells' books, and he also inspired writers of European speculative fiction such as Karel Čapek and Yevgeny Zamyatin.{{Clear}}



  • The superhuman protagonist of J. D. Beresford's 1911 novel, The Hampdenshire Wonder, Victor Stott, was based on Wells.
  • In M. P. Shiel's short story "The Primate of the Rose" (1928), there is an unpleasant womaniser named E. P. Crooks, who was written as a parody of Wells.George Hay, "Shiel Versus the Renegade Romantic", in A. Reynolds Morse, Shiel in Diverse Hands: A Collection of Essays. Cleveland, OH: Reynolds Morse Foundation, 1983. pp. 109–113. Wells had attacked Shiel's Prince Zaleski when it was published in 1895, and this was Shiel's response. Wells praised Shiel's The Purple Cloud (1901); in turn Shiel expressed admiration for Wells, referring to him at a speech to the Horsham Rotary Club in 1933 as "my friend Mr. Wells".
  • In C. S. Lewis's novel That Hideous Strength (1945), the character Jules is a caricature of Wells,Rolfe; Parrinder (1990: 226) and much of Lewis's science fiction was written both under the influence of Wells and as an antithesis to his work (or, as he put it, an "exorcism"Lewis, C. S., Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life. New York & London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1955. p. 36. of the influence it had on him).
  • In Brian Aldiss's novella The Saliva Tree (1966), Wells has a small off screen guest role.WEB,weblink H.G. Wells: First Citizen of the Future, 173, Rowman & Littlefield, 2014,
  • In Saul Bellow's novel Mr. Sammler's Planet (1970), Wells is one of several historical figures the protagonist met when he was a young man.R. A. York, The Extension of Life: Fiction and History in the American Novel. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2003. {{ISBN|0838639895}}. p. 40.
  • In The Map of Time (2008) by Spanish author Félix J. Palma; Wells is one of several historical characters.WEB,weblink Victorian Time Travel: PW Talks with Felix J. Palma, Lenny Picker,, 2011-04-04, 2012-01-17,
  • Wells is one of the two Georges in Paul Levinson's 2013 time-travel novelette, "Ian, George, and George," published in Analog magazine.Paul Levinson, "Ian, George, and George," Analog, December, 2013.


  • Rod Taylor portrays WellsBOOK, Alternate Americas: Science Fiction Film and American Culture, 2006, M. Keith, Booker, 199, Greenwood Publishing Group, Praeger Publishing, Westport, 978-0-275-98395-6,weblink BOOK, The Monomyth in American Science Fiction Films, Donald E., Palumbo, McFarland & Company, Jefferson, 2014, 978-0-786-47911-5, 33–38, in the 1960 science fiction film The Time Machine (based on the novel of the same name), in which Wells uses his time machine to try and find his Utopian society.
  • Malcolm McDowell portrays Wells in the 1979 science fiction film Time After Time, in which Wells uses a time machine to pursue Jack the Ripper to the present day. In the film, Wells meets "Amy" in the future who then returns to 1893 to become his second wife Amy Catherine Robbins.
  • Wells is portrayed in the 1985 story Timelash from the 22nd season of the BBC science-fiction television series Doctor Who. In this story, Herbert, an enthusiastic temporary companion to the Doctor, is revealed to be a young H. G. Wells. The plot is loosely based upon the themes and characters of The Time Machine with references to The War of the Worlds, The Invisible Man and The Island of Doctor Moreau. The story jokingly suggests that Wells's inspiration for his later novels came from his adventure with the Sixth Doctor.WEB,weblink Timelash, BBC, 15 April 2017,
  • In the BBC2 anthology series Encounters about imagined meetings between historical figures, Beautiful Lies, by Paul Pender (15 August 1992) centred on an acrimonious dinner party attended by Wells (Richard Todd), George Orwell (Jon Finch), and William Empson (Patrick Ryecart).
  • The character of Wells also appeared in several episodes of (Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman) (1993–1997), usually pitted against the time-travelling villain known as Tempus (Lane Davies). Wells's younger self was played by Terry Kiser, and the older Wells was played by Hamilton Camp.
  • In the British TV mini-series The Infinite Worlds of H. G. Wells (2001), several of Wells's short stories are dramatised but are adapted using Wells himself (Tom Ward) as the main protagonist in each story.
  • In the Disney Channel Original Series Phil of the Future, which centres on time-travel, the present-day high school that the main characters attend is named "H. G. Wells"."Phil of the Future Arch Enemies". MTV. Retrieved 15 April 2017
  • In the 2006 television docudrama (H. G. Wells: War with the World), Wells is played by Michael Sheen.NEWS, H G Wells: War With The World,weblink BBC, 22 October 2017,
  • On the science fiction television series Warehouse 13 (2009–2014), there is a female version Helena G. Wells. When she appeared she explained that her brother was her front for her writing because a female science fiction author would not be accepted.WEB,weblink Warehouse 13: About the Series,, 15 April 2017, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 6 October 2016, dmy-all,
  • Comedian Paul F. Tompkins portrays a fictional Wells as the host of The Dead Authors Podcast, wherein Wells uses his time machine to bring dead authors (played by other comedians) to the present and interview them.WEB,weblink Best Podcasts of the Week, 21 April 2015, Entertainment Weekly, Hardwick, Robin, WEB,weblink 'Battlefield Earth' is no longer the funniest thing to result from Scientology, 19 July 2015, Hitfix, McWeeny, Drew,
  • H. G. Wells as a young boy appears in the Legends of Tomorrow episode "The Magnificent Eight". In this story, the boy Wells is dying of consumption but is cured by a time-travelling Martin Stein.
  • In the four part series The Nightmare Worlds of H. G. Wells (2016), Wells is played by Ray Winstone.NEWS, Ray Winstone stars as HG Wells,weblink The Independent, 22 October 2017,
  • In the 2017 television series version of Time After Time, based on the 1979 film, H. G. Wells is portrayed by Freddie Stroma.WEB, Elizabeth, Wagmeister,weblink ABC's 'Time After Time' Pilot Casts Josh Bowman, Freddie Stroma as Jack the Ripper & H. G. Wells, Variety (magazine), Variety, 17 February 2016, 2017-03-09,

Literary papers

In 1954, the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign purchased the H. G. Wells literary papers and correspondence collection."H. G. Wells papers, 1845–1946 | University of Illinois Rare Book & Manuscript Library". University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. The University's Rare Book & Manuscript Library holds the largest collection of Wells manuscripts, correspondence, first editions and publications in the United States."H. G. Wells Correspondence". Library Illinois. Among these is an unpublished material and the manuscripts of such works as The War of the Worlds and The Time Machine. The collection includes first editions, revisions, translations. The letters contain general family correspondence, communications from publishers, material regarding the Fabian Society, and letters from politicians and public figures, most notably George Bernard Shaw and Joseph Conrad.



{{notelist |notes={{efn|name=sfhof|1=Science fiction magazine editors Hugo Gernsback and John W. Campbell were the inaugural deceased members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame, inducted in 1996 and followed annually by fiction writers Wells and Isaac Asimov, C. L. Moore and Robert Heinlein, Abraham Merritt and Jules Verne.WEB, Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame, Mid American Science Fiction and Fantasy Conventions, Inc. (,weblink 22 February 2008, 2015-08-22, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 22 July 2015, Last updated in 2008, this was the official homepage of the Hall of Fame to 2004.}}}}



Further reading

  • Dickson, Lovat. H. G. Wells: His Turbulent Life & Times. 1969.
  • Gilmour, David. The Long Recessional: The Imperial Life of Rudyard Kipling. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2002 (paperback, {{ISBN|0-374-18702-9}}); 2003 (paperback, {{ISBN|0-374-52896-9}}).
  • Gomme, A. W., Mr. Wells as Historian. Glasgow: MacLehose, Jackson, and Co., 1921.
  • Gosling, John. Waging the War of the Worlds. Jefferson, North Carolina, McFarland, 2009 (paperback, {{ISBN|0-7864-4105-4}}).
  • Mackenzie, Norman and Jean, The Time Traveller: the Life of H G Wells, London: Weidenfeld, 1973, {{ISBN|0-2977-6531-0}}
  • Mauthner, Martin. German Writers in French Exile, 1933–1940, London: Vallentine and Mitchell, 2007, {{ISBN|978-0-85303-540-4}}.
  • McLean, Steven. 'The Early Fiction of H. G. Wells: Fantasies of Science'. Palgrave, 2009, {{ISBN|9780230535626}}.
  • Partington, John S. Building Cosmopolis: The Political Thought of H. G. Wells. Ashgate, 2003, {{ISBN|978-0754633839}}.
  • Sherborne. Michael. H. G. Wells: Another Kind of Life. London: Peter Owen, 2010, {{ISBN|978-0-72061-351-3}}.
  • Smith, David C., H. G. Wells: Desperately Mortal: A Biography. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1986, {{ISBN|0-3000-3672-8}}
  • West, Anthony. H. G. Wells: Aspects of a Life. London: Hutchinson, 1984.
  • Foot, Michael. H. G.: History of Mr. Wells. Doubleday, 1985 ({{ISBN|978-1-887178-04-4}}), Black Swan, New edition, Oct 1996 (paperback, {{ISBN|0-552-99530-4}})

External links

{{External links|date=May 2019}}{{Wikisource|Author:Herbert George Wells}}{{Commons category|H. G. Wells}}{{Library resources box|by=yes|onlinebooks=yes}}
  • {{DMOZ|Arts/Literature/Authors/W/Wells,_H._G./}}
  • {{IMDb name|0920229}}
  • {{isfdb name|id=H._G._Wells}}
  • {{IBList|type=author|id=165|name=H. G. Wells}}
  • {{LCAuth|n79063613|H. G. Wells|772|ue}}
  • Future Tense – The Story of H. G. Wells at BBC one – 150th anniversary documentary (2016)
  • weblink" title="">"In the footsteps of H G Wells" at New Statesman – "The great author called for a Human Rights Act; 60 years later, we have it" (2000)
Sources—collections Sources—letters, essays and interviews
  • weblink" title="">Archive of Wells's BBC broadcasts
  • Film interview with H. G. Wells
  • weblink" title="">"Stephen Crane. From an English Standpoint", by Wells, 1900.
  • weblink" title="">Rabindranath Tagore: In conversation with H. G. Wells. Rabindranath Tagore and Wells conversing in Geneva in 1930.
  • weblink" title="">"Introduction", to W. N. P. Barbellion's The Journal of a Disappointed Man, by Wells, 1919.
  • weblink" title="">"Woman and Primitive Culture", by Wells, 1895.
  • Letter, to M. P. Shiel, by Wells, 1937.
  • weblink" title="">H. G. Wells, The Open Conspiracy (1933)
Biography Critical essays {{H. G. Wells|state=autocollapse}}{{London School of Economics|state=autocollapse}}{{Science fiction}}{{Navboxes|title = Associated subjects|list1={{The War of the Worlds|state=autocollapse}}{{The Time Machine|state=autocollapse}}{{The Invisible Man|state=autocollapse}}{{The Island of Dr. Moreau|state=autocollapse}}{{The First Men in the Moon|state=autocollapse}}{{Kipps|state=autocollapse}}}}{{Authority control}}

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