Free online reading
The Time Machine
Herbert George Wells was born 1866 in Bromley, Kent as the son of a shopkeeper. He went to Midhurst Grammar School where he became later a teacher. 1884 he began to study biologie at the Royal College of Science in London. Henry Huxley, a famous scientist and humanist, teached him and made a deep impression on him. After he had graduated he began to learn something about scientific journalism.
Politically, he had been a member of the moderate socialistic Fabian Society (1903-1908). During the First World War he was active in a movement which was a forerunner of the United Nations. Before the Second World War he visited many countries and tried to convince the heads of states, like Roosvelt and Stalin, of his plans of a new peaceful world order. But he did not have much influence. H.G.Wells died 1946.
His first two novels were ,,The Time Machine", a prototype of science fiction and ,,The Wonderful Visit". They are very characteristic for all of his novels, because they show his interest in science, the evolution of the human race, and the faults of the society of his time. He wrote also scientific fantasies like ,,The Invisible Man", utopian novels like ,,A Modern Utopia", short stories like ,,Short History of Mankind" etc...
In his book ,,The Time Machine", he critizises the social developments in London to that time. Mainly the differences between the rich and the poor. The factory workers who had to work in the underground and the rich above them.
The time traveller (His name is never mentioned in the story) invites his friends and workmates to explain them the faculty of time travelling. He shows them a modell of his time machine and they try it. But they don´t know if the machine is now travelling in the future or in the past. After this conversation, they don´t believe him really because it is too fantastic. One week later they meet again in the house of the time traveller; invited for dinner, but the host isn´t present. Suddenly he appears in dirty clothes and confused. He says that he just wants something to eat, and he will tell them later what has happened. After dinner they go in the smokeroom and the time traveller starts to tell them his story.
He tells them that in the moring he has tried the time machine for the first time. He felt like a suicide before he started the machine. After starting the machine he saw the hands of time moving very fast forward and that he was surrounded of a grey light. He had a feeling like falling. The days and nights were flashing very fast and the summer and winter changed in minutes. Suddenly he recognized that his laboratory had been disappeared and he had come into the open air. After a few moments he knew that he had to stop. He lugged over the lever of the machine and he flung headalong through the air. All In all, it was a horrible trip.
He found himself on a green hillside. After the mist had gone he recognized persons which were very small and that they came up to him. They were perhaps four feet high, very fragile and their skin looked like porcelain. After he tried to make a conversation with them he knew that they had a strange new language and he recognized that they had an intellect like a fiveyear-old child. But they were very beautyful creatures.
The Time Traveller followed them into a huge building and discovered that there lived many of this little people, the Eloi. Because they were all equal, lived without danger, without illness, had enough to eat, nobody had to work and life was easy for them, he supposed that the system must be communistic or something like that.
After he explored this new strange world he found out, that his time machine was gone. He was very confused and desperated, because he was afraid of beeing caught at this place - forever... He supposed the machine below a great white sphinx, which he had seen, but the door to get inside, was always locked.
Two days later he found a friend, who he had rescued from drowning. Her name was Weena, an Eloi. Her language was very simple so he could talk to her.
He found out that the citizens were always afraid of night, but he didn´t know why. Later he discovered that there were a strange population which lived in the underground, the Morlocks. They were small, very ugly with white skin and big red eye´s to see better in the darkness. The Eloi were afraid of them, because they were canibals. Now he realised that the Morlocks were the real leaders of this system.
After a few days he had the first contact with a Morlock. As he inspected a ruined building he discovered a strange creature. First he just realised the red eye´s and because he had frightened it, it ran out and seemed to be very afraid of daylight. He followed the creature and discovered a well. He heard a strange noise like the sound of pumping machines which came out of the well.
He expected that the Morlocks had stolen his time machine and hid it in the underground.
Weena tried to put him off going down the well, but his curiosity was stronger and he wanted to find his machine.
He went down, only with a few machtes in his pocked. In the darkness he felt little hands on his body, and saw the big red eye´s again. Very quikly he stroke a match, because of the light the Morlocks escaped. After a while he reached a big hall where he discovered rough outline of big machines and a pile of meat. Many Morlocks surrounded him with the intetion to eat him. Because he hadn´t enough matches anymore he thought that he had no chance to escape. Blind, he ran out and reached furtunately an exit. And then, for a time, he was insensible.
Weena woke him up with a kiss and they went together to the Palace of Green Porcelain. He had seen the palace before and was very interested in that, what might be inside. The next day they reached the palace, and found out that the building was ruined. It had been a museum, but now everything was destroyed, full of dust and they discovered machines, skelletons of animals and old books.
After a while they found a box of matches and camphor (A chemical-combination which is very flamable). He also got a lever with which he could defend himself against the Morlocks. Now they went back to the great white sphinx to get his machine back. On their way, they spend the night in a dark forest, although they knew that the Morlocks followed them. The time traveller striked many matches, to frighten the Morlocks. After a while he made a fireplace, but unfortunately he felt asleep and so the Morlocks took Weena away, perhaps she was dead. He woke up while the Morlocks tried to eat him and now he fliped out. The time traveller took the lever from the museum and killed two or three of these ugly Morlocks. But he had pity on the Morlocks, and so he stoped to kill them.
The next morning the time traveller reached the sphinx. He was surprised, because the door was unlocked. But he knew that the Morlocks made that trap to catch him. Inside he saw the time machine in a corner. While he was walking towards the machine the door has been closed. Now he recognized the voices of the Morlocks. They touched him and tried to pull him down. Unfurtunately he had no matches. But he reached his machine in the darkness and started to travel more far into the future.
Everything vanished. Millions of years in the future he found himself on a beach. The sky was no longer blue, it was a mix of red and black. The only life he could recognize were vegetation, and monster crabs. Than he travelled further and the world looked worth. He saw not even monster crabs. So he came to the conclusion that life had disappeared. He was very shocked, and travelled back to tell his friends what he had seen. This is the piont where the time traveller came into the dinning room with dirty clothes.
Everybody who is present doesn´t believe the story. Just one man, the narrator. The next day the narrator visits the time traveller again, to get more information about time travelling. But the time traveller wanted to explore the time again to proof his experiences with photos. The narrator shall wait for him, but he waits the whole afternoon. Then, the narrator goes -and, as everybody knows, the time traveller will never return.
KLETT - ENGLISH ECHO READERS / H.G.Wells - The Time Machine ISBN: 3-12- 579800-0
- Quote paper
- Marius Herzog (Author), 2000, Wells, H.G. - The Time Machine, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/98368