thirty or one hundred seventy-five has been, as you know, the
direst calamity that could befall a naval commander. Court-martial and
degradation follow swiftly, unless as is often the case, the
unfortunate man takes his own life before this unjust and heartless
regulation can hold him up to public scorn.
There has been in the past no excuse, no circumstance, that could
palliate the offense.
"He was in command, and he took his ship across thirty!" That was
sufficient. It might not have been in any way his fault, as, in the
case of the Coldwater, it could not possibly have been justly charged
to my account that the gravitation-screen generators were worthless;
but well I knew that should chance have it that we were blown across
thirty today--as we might easily be before the terrific west wind that
we could hear howling below us, the responsibility would fall upon my
In a way, the regulation was a good one, for it certainly accomplished
that for which it was intended. We all fought shy of 30d on the east
and 175d on the west, and, though we had to skirt them pretty close,
nothing but an act of God ever drew one of us across. You all are
familiar with the naval tradition that a good officer could sense
proximity to either line, and for my part, I am firmly convinced of the
truth of this as I am that the compass finds the north without recourse
to tedious processes of reasoning.
Old Admiral Sanchez was wont to maintain that he could smell thirty,
and the men of the first ship in which I sailed claimed that Coburn,
the navigating officer, knew by name every wave along thirty from 60dN.
to 60dS. However, I'd hate to vouch for this.
Well, to get back to my narrative; we kept on dropping slowly toward
the surface the while we bucked the west wind, clawing away from thirty
as fast as we could. I was on the bridge, and as we dropped from the
brilliant sunlight into the dense vapor of clouds and on down through
them to the wild, dark storm strata beneath, it seemed that my spirits
dropped with the falling ship, and the buoyancy of hope ran low in
The waves were running to tremendous heights, and the Coldwater was not
designed to meet such waves head on. Her elements were the blue ether,
far above the raging storm, or the greater depths of ocean, which no
storm could ruffle.
As I stood speculating upon our chances once we
[Frontispiece: The cold hollow eye of a revolver sought the center of my forehead.Page 12
" Together we raced across the scarlet sward, I timing my speed that I might not outdistance my slower companion.Page 15
In an instant the brute was upon me, but ere it could fasten its hideous mouths into my breast and throat I grasped a writhing tentacle in either hand.Page 37
"All who reach the Valley Dor are, by custom, the rightful prey of the plant men and the apes, while their arms and ornaments become the portion of the therns; but if one escapes the terrible denizens of the valley for even a few hours the therns may claim such a one as their own.Page 43
Only Tars Tarkas, Thuvia, and I were left.Page 49
I had thought the green Martians the most ferocious warriors in the universe, but the awful abandon with which.Page 50
Their features were clear cut and handsome in the extreme; their eyes were well set and large, though a slight narrowness lent them a crafty appearance; the iris, as well as I could determine by moonlight, was of extreme blackness, while the eyeball itself was quite white and clear.Page 56
Her beautiful face was distorted in an expression of horrible malevolence.Page 76
One may speak of scarlet sward and ivory-stemmed trees decked with brilliant purple blooms; of winding walks paved with crushed rubies, with emerald, with turquoise, even with diamonds themselves; of a magnificent temple of burnished gold, hand-wrought with marvellous designs; but where are the words to describe the glorious colours that are unknown to earthly eyes? where the mind or the imagination that can grasp the gorgeous scintillations of unheard-of rays as they emanate from the thousand.Page 84
Then Tars Tarkas had been with me, but now I was utterly alone in so far as friendly companionship was concerned.Page 89
"A plan may come with our awakening.Page 102
"It will not be long," he said, "before we shall have light.Page 107
With us fighting is all that counts; were it not for that there would be more of the First Born than all the creatures of Barsoom could support, for in so far as I know none of us ever dies a natural death.Page 113
It was rising at an angle of about forty-five degrees dead ahead of us, with the evident intention of combing us with grappling hooks from above as it skimmed low over our deck.Page 119
" The girl's voice awoke Xodar and Carthoris.Page 148
Instead, they stood in tense silence with their eyes fastened upon me, as though waiting for a signal to attack.Page 150
I vaulted to the ground below and ran swiftly toward the advancing party.Page 157
of Helium.Page 163
The brief instant in which I had seen and recognized Carthoris before the chain fell must have been ample to check the force of the blow.