THE LAND OF THE CENTRAL SUN (1903) – Written by Park Winthrop. The Wintons – Jack and Louise – plus the Livingstons – Bert and Lily – are among the passengers on the ship Golden City when it gets blown off course. The ship winds up near Antarctica and gets trapped in ice.
Damages cause the vessel to start sinking, but some passengers are rescued by the arrival of a (literal) CIGAR-SHAPED aircraft made of metal. The crew members of this mysterious ship are all dwarves and they are captained by Baron Montavo.
The Baron explains to his guests that the ship is called the Meteor and is run by anti-gravity devices in the center and by magnetic devices at the front and back. Montavo pilots the Meteor under the sea and into a subaquatic tunnel which goes on for miles.
This is one of the many old sci-fi tales which present the Earth as being hollow, with an interior sun. A stone moon orbits that sun (yes, ALL done inside the Earth itself) so that the inhabitants of the inner Earth have a semblance of night when the stone moon periodically blocks the sunlight.
Flying crocodiles and flying cows are among the odd animal life in this interior world. The dwarves are ruled by a monarchy and Baron Montavo serves as both Chief Scientist and Political Advisor to the King.
The lowest social class of dwarves are the Frods, miners who are very regimented and, while the surface world visitors are “in town,” wind up rebelling against the way they are exploited by the upper classes.
A full-scale uprising by the Frods causes chaos during which our four main characters hijack an airship and escape back to the surface. Their craft emerges from a cave in the Andes just in time, as the tunnel collapse, preventing a return trip. +++
FOR EIGHT ADDITIONAL EXAMPLES OF ANCIENT SCIENCE FICTION CLICK HERE
FOR TEN MORE EXAMPLES OF ANCIENT SCIENCE FICTION CLICK HERE: https://glitternight.com/2014/03/03/ten-neglected-examples-of-ancient-science-fiction/
FOR WASHINGTON IRVING’S 1809 depiction of an invasion from the moon click here: https://glitternight.com/2014/05/05/ancient-science-fiction-the-men-of-the-moon-1809-by-washington-irving/
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