MEDA: A TALE OF THE FUTURE (1891) – This sci-fi tale of the year 5575 AD was first written in 1888 but read mostly among the social circle of the author. Its first official publication came in 1891.
Artist Kenneth Folingsby is flung forward in time to the year 5575, when he can tell that the pull of gravity has lessened substantially. Following a canal, he comes across the ruins of Edinburgh and sees what people of future Scotland – who call themselves Scotonians – look like. This is another of those 1800s novels which absurdly assume that less than 4,000 years will be enough time to bring on enormous evolutionary changes to the human body.
To be fair, though, Meda: A Tale of the Future does use mutation following a planetary disaster to justify the rapid physiological changes.
The Scotonians have stubby bodies with large heads shaped like hot air balloons and are no taller than four feet. The people themselves are practically lighter than air, with some needing weighted down with lead or stones to prevent them from floating off into the upper atmosphere. Continue reading