Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"in 1974 I experienced an invasion of my mind by a transcendentally rational mind, as if I had been insane all my life and suddenly I had become sane."
- Philip K. Dick

Flame Pistol  
  A hand-held weapon that incinerates opponents.  

As far as I know, this is the first use of this phrase.

Masters bounded into the circle of light by the manhole connection, sending streamer after blinding streamer into the darkness from his flame pistol. By its light they saw that he was battling a dozen of the ugly creatures that were the highest form of life on the planet Mars.
Technovelgy from Invisible Ships, by Harl Vincent.
Published by Amazing Stories Quarterly in 1931
Additional resources -

Another example, from Parasite Planet by Stanley G. Weinbaum, published by Astounding Stories in 1935:

It’s invulnerable to bullets; nothing less than the terrific blast of a flame-pistol will kill it, and then only if the blast destroys every individual cell. It travels over the ground absorbing everything, leaving bare black soil where the ubiquitous molds spring up at once—a noisome, nightmarish creature.

Ham sprang aside as the doughpot erupted suddenly from the jungle to his right. It couldn’t absorb the transkin, of course, but to be caught in that pasty mess meant quick suffocation. He glared at it disgustedly and was sorely tempted to blast it with his flame-pistol as it slithered past at running speed. He would have, too, but the experienced Venusian frontiersman is very careful with the flame-pistol.

It has to be charged with a diamond, a cheap black one, of course, but still an item to consider. The crystal, when fired, gives up all its energy in one terrific blast that roars out like a lightning stroke for a hundred yards, incinerating everything in its path...

He snatched his flame-pistol and sent a terrific, roaring blast into the horror, a blast that incinerated tons of pasty filth and left a few small fragments crawling and feeding on the debris.

The blast also, as it usually does, shattered the barrel of the weapon. He sighed as he set about the forty-minute job of replacing it—no true Hotlander ever delays that—for the blast had cost fifteen good American dollars, ten for the cheap diamond that had exploded, and five for the barrel.

(Thanks to Winchell Chung of Project Rho for the tip on this item.)

Here's another example, this from The Empress of Mars (1939) by Ross Rocklynne:

“Truly, Darak of Werg,” he exclaimed, “it were well I did not see fit to use the one remaining charge in my flame pistol on the intruder who boarded us last night.”

Compare to the flesh gun from The Computer Connection (1974), by Alfred Bester.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Invisible Ships
  More Ideas and Technology by Harl Vincent
  Tech news articles related to Invisible Ships
  Tech news articles related to works by Harl Vincent

Articles related to Weapon
Bullet Steers Itself! The Advanced Low-Cost Munitions Ordnance ALaMO
Russians Think US Is Weaponizing Asteroids
Drone Bombings In Moscow Foreseen 100 Years Ago
TM-62 Loitering Ground Landmine

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Science Fiction Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Science Fiction in the News

Prophetic Offers Lucid Dreaming Halo With Morpheus-1 AI
''Leads trail away from insertion points on her face and wrist... to a lucid dreamer...'

More Like A Tumblebug Than A Motorcycle
'It is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel...'

Tesla Camera-Only Vision Predicted In 1930's SF
'By its means, the machine can see.'

First Ever Proof Of Water On Asteroids
'Yes, strangely enough there was still sufficient water beneath the surface of Vesta.'

Aptera Solar EV More Stylish Than Heinlein Steel Tortoise
'When confronted by hills, or rough terrain, it did not stop, but simply slowed until the task demanded equaled its steady power output.'

Gigantic Space Sunshade Would Fight Global Warming
'...the light of the sun had been polarized by two crossed fields so that no radiation could pass.'

Untethered Spacewalk's 50th Anniversary
'But that space walk of mine wasn't so very amazing.'

ESA Designs Huge Inflatable Moonbase
'It was like being inside a balloon; indeed, that was exactly where he was.'

AlphaGarden Robot Cares For Gardens Better Than Humans
'...a simple clock-set servok with pipe and hose arms.'

Let's Make Slaver Sunflowers! Engineering Plants To Reflect Light
'The mirror-blossom was a terrible weapon.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Science Fiction Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.