The Time Machine

The Time Machine

By H. G. Wells

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This is the annotated edition including the rare biographical essay by Edwin E. Slosson called "H. G. Wells - A Major Prophet Of His Time". Mr. Wells' first great bid for fame was made when The Time Machine, which attracted a good deal of notice,was published. People began to wake up to the fact that Mr. Wells was a new force in English literature. The book surprised even those who had closely followed Mr. Wells' work. That it would show extraordinary cleverness and be admirably written was very clear. But it was not expected to find in it an imagination of the very first order, evenly sustained, never out of control, and shot through with gleams of a poetic fancy. The story is briefly this: A mathematician, conceiving time as a fourth dimension of space, invented a machine that will travel into the future. He arrived at the year 802,701 A.D. In the sunset of mankind he finds two distinct races ? the Eloi, beautiful little beings, childlike, innocent, happy, idle, living still on the surface of the earth; and the Morlocks, the underground toilers, savage, brutal, hideous, working that the Eloi may do nothing. Their wages are the flesh of their masters. Once every month, before the birth of the new moon, they come up to earth and attack the Eloi. Such as they capture they drag down to their subterranean caves and eat. The adventures of the Time Traveller among these people ? the theft of his machine by the Morlocks, his visit to their haunts in search of it, and his fight with them in the burning forest ? are full of breathless interest and incomparably told. And further on, when he has left the era of the Eloi and their slayers millions of years behind, there is a wonderful picture of the slow decay of the world in the twilight and night of time.

H. G. Wells