The Chessmen of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 84

first glance at the city, now much closer than when they had first
discovered it, revealed the fact that it was inhabited. Banners and
pennons broke from many a staff. People were moving about the gate
before them. The high white walls were paced by sentinels at far
intervals. Upon the roofs of higher buildings the women could be seen
airing the sleeping silks and furs. Turan watched it all in silence for
some time.

"I do not know them," he said at last. "I cannot guess what city this
may be. But it is an ancient city. Its people have no fliers and no
firearms. It must be old indeed."

"How do you know they have not these things?" asked the girl.

"There are no landing-stages upon the roofs--not one that can be seen
from here; while were we looking similarly at Helium we would see
hundreds. And they have no firearms because their defenses are all
built to withstand the attack of spear and arrow, with spear and arrow.
They are an ancient people."

"If they are ancient perhaps they are friendly," suggested the girl.
"Did we not learn as children in the history of our planet that it was
once peopled by a friendly, peace-loving race?"

"But I fear they are not as ancient as that," replied Turan, laughing.
"It has been long ages since the men of Barsoom loved peace."

"My father loves peace," returned the girl.

"And yet he is always at war," said the man.

She laughed. "But he says he likes peace."

"We all like peace," he rejoined; "peace with honor; but our neighbors
will not let us have it, and so we must fight."

"And to fight well men must like to fight," she added.

"And to like to fight they must know how to fight," he said, "for no
man likes to do the thing that he does not know how to do well."

"Or that some other man can do better than he."

"And so always there will be wars and men will fight," he concluded,
"for always the men with hot blood in their veins will practice the art
of war."

"We have settled a great question," said the girl, smiling; "but our
stomachs are still empty."

"Your panthan is neglecting his duty," replied Turan; "and how can he
with the great reward always before his eyes!"

She did not guess in what literal a sense he spoke.

"I go forthwith," he continued, "to wrest food and drink from the

"No," she cried, laying a hand upon his arm, "not yet. They would slay
you or make you prisoner.

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with The Gods of Mars

Page 1
I have learned the secret, nephew, and I may traverse the trackless void at my will, coming and going between the countless planets as I list; but my heart is always in Barsoom, and while it is there in the keeping of my Martian Princess, I doubt that I shall ever again leave the dying world that is my life.
Page 6
As I watched them from behind the stem of a huge tree, one of the creatures moved slowly in my direction, engaged in the occupation that seemed to be the principal business of each of them, and which consisted in running their oddly shaped hands over the surface of the sward, for what purpose I could not determine.
Page 16
Their eyes are very close set, but do not protrude as do those of the green men of Mars; their ears are high set, but more laterally located than are the green men's, while their snouts and teeth are much like those of our African gorilla.
Page 31
The fellow had crept stealthily from a dark corridor and was almost upon me with raised sword ere I saw him.
Page 34
The great Thark stood with his back against an angle of the walls, while facing him in a semi-circle a half-dozen huge monsters crouched waiting for an opening.
Page 44
I was discouraged.
Page 60
It was as one might say: "You had better carry an umbrella.
Page 61
I am of another world.
Page 70
"It runs far beneath the ice field, and below the level of the Valley Otz, but its canyon is open here.
Page 83
"As you have done to Xodar, now do you likewise to Thurid.
Page 99
Listen! You can scarce hear the battle-cry of the women now for nearly all are dead.
Page 137
Immediately Hor Vastus dispatched a dozen air scouts in as many directions to search for her.
Page 139
"More must I hear from those who have taken the pilgrimage than their names.
Page 143
Page 144
Upon the smaller platform each would take his place while his case was being heard.
Page 150
upon the opposite side of the hall from me with the table intervening.
Page 163
"No threats of torture or death, no bribes, however fabulous, would move him.
Page 169
At almost the same instant another scout from the left flank came racing toward the flagship.
Page 188
And then by the mere weight and momentum of my body, I rushed completely through the two remaining ranks and sprang upon the dais beside the carved sorapus throne.
Page 189
"Yes, Dejah Thoris--I know.