The dull radiation arrested him

The dull radiation arrested him

Warwick Goble

Photomechanical reproduction of a watercolour

5½ x 3¼ inches

H.G. Wells, The War of the Worlds, serialized in Pearson’s Magazine, 3 (Jan–June 1897): 368.

This dynamic illustration shows the moment when Ogilvy tries to go into the pit but is beaten back by the heat emanating from the Martian ‘cylinder’. Although the creatures have not yet emerged, Goble suggests their sinuous form in the expressionistic lines of the broken branch and the murky outline of the spacecraft. The journalistic directness of the image contributes to Wells’s presentation of foreign invasion as entirely feasible.

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Scanned image and text by Simon Cooke.

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