John Clayton, Lord Greystoke—he who had been "Tarzan of the Apes"—sat in silence in the apartments of his friend, Lieutenant Paul D'Arnot, in Paris, gazing meditatively at the toe of his immaculate boot.
His mind revolved many memories, recalled by the escape of his arch-enemy from the French military prison to which he had been sentenced for life upon the testimony of the ape-man.
He thought of the lengths to which Rokoff had once gone to compass his death, and he realized that what the man had already done would doubtless be as nothing by comparison with what he would wish and plot to do now that he was again free.
Tarzan had recently brought his wife and infant son to London to escape the discomforts and dangers of the rainy season upon their vast estate in Uziri—the land of the savage Waziri warriors whose broad African domains the ape-man had once ruled.
He had run across the Channel for a brief visit with his old friend, but the news of the Russian's escape had already cast a shadow upon his outing, so that though he had but just arrived he was already contemplating an immediate return to London....
Paradimage ofrece el relato original en su colección "Novelas de Cine". Versionado por vez primera para la gran pantalla en 1918, bajo la batuta de Scott Sidney, y considerada ésta como la más fiel adaptación de la novela de Burroughs, Tarzán es, sin embargo, mundialmente conocido, admirado y querido por la inmortal película de Van Dyke, de 1932, en la que el “hombre-mono” de Burroughs tomará para siempre la figura del espectacular Weissmuller, elegido de entre más de 150 aspirantes al casting, en gran parte por ser el mejor nadador del mundo en los agitados años 20.
I do not expect you to believe this story. Nor could you wonder had you witnessed a recent experience of mine when, in the armor of blissful and stupendous ignorance, I gaily narrated the gist of it to a Fellow of the Royal Geological Society on the occasion of my last trip to London.
You would surely have thought that I had been detected in no less a heinous crime than the purloining of the Crown Jewels from the Tower, or putting poison in the coffee of His Majesty the King.
The erudite gentleman in whom I confided congealed before I was half through!—it is all that saved him from exploding—and my dreams of an Honorary Fellowship, gold medals, and a niche in the Hall of Fame faded into the thin, cold air of his arctic atmosphere.
But I believe the story, and so would you, and so would the learned Fellow of the Royal Geological Society, had you and he heard it from the lips of the man who told it to me. Had you seen, as I did, the fire of truth in those gray eyes; had you felt the ring of sincerity in that quiet voice; had you realized the pathos of it all—you, too, would believe. You would not have needed the final ocular proof that I had—the weird rhamphorhynchus-like creature which he had brought back with him from the inner world.
I came upon him quite suddenly, and no less unexpectedly, upon the rim of the great Sahara Desert. He was standing before a goat-skin tent amidst a clump of date palms within a tiny oasis. Close by was an Arab douar of some eight or ten tents.
I had come down from the north to hunt lion. My party consisted of a dozen children of the desert—I was the only "white" man. As we approached the little clump of verdure I saw the man come from his tent and with hand-shaded eyes peer intently at us. At sight of me he advanced rapidly to meet us....
Art interior: Jesse Marsh
Cover Painting: Morris Gollub
Writer: Gaylord Du Bois
Cover: Painting of a leopard and a black panther fighting. Small Lex Barker insert.
Inside Front Cover: “Tarzan’s Friends” - black and white drawing of Tarzan and two apes.
1st story - Tarzan’s Jungle World - “Tarzan Returns to Opar ” - 23pp.
Type -- White Pygmies - Shifta Slavers - Rescue Pygmies - Opar
Tarzan enlists Jad-bal-ja’s help. The pygmies continue to harass the Shiftas. Tarzan directs the pygmies to start a grass fire and to shoot arrows through the smoke. Tarzan, Buto, and Jad-bal-ja will attack from the rear. They charge into the camp. During the battle, a rifle butt knocks down Tarzan from behind. Jad-bal-ja saves him. The Shiftas are defeated. Tarzan gives the victory cry of the bull ape. The women are reunited with their men. Tarzan has Jad-bal-ja carry himself, Lilana, and five other pygmy women back to their camp.
The next day Tarzan tells the Prince that he will take them to Opar. However, he must first rid the ruins of the Apes of Opar. Tarzan has Buto and the pygmies pick leafs for a sleeping potion, which he brews. They take feathers and inject the potion into a bunch of bananas. Tarzan leads them to the “Rock,” the mountain that holds Opar. Tarzan climbs the mountain, braids a rope out of vines, and pulls the bananas to the top of the Rock. He goes to the ruins and allows the mangani to see him. As the apes give chase, Tarzan casually drops the fruit. Nugak, the leader of the apes, yells at his tribe to leave the bananas and chase the tarmangani. As they follow Tarzan across an archway, it crumbles and the apes fall. Tarzan runs them around until they get tried. Nugak catches Tarzan when he slips on a banana peel. The other apes stop to eat the fruit. Tarzan slips away from Nugak and knocks him out with one mighty blow. He binds Nugak’s arms. The ape-man pulls Buto to the top of the Rock. They carry the apes to the edge of the cliff and lower them down the mountain. They raise the pygmies and their antelopes up to the top. Tarzan shows the pygmies around Opar and where the treasure is hidden. Tarzan and Buto sit at the top of the Rock and wait for the angry apes to leave. End.
The first Jungle Annual uses some familiar people in the featured story. Buto Matari, Tarzan’s ‘Little John’ type friend from Dell #11 and 32.1, returns. His brawn is needed to help the white pygmies find a new home. The pygmies are referred to as ‘little people.’ (A political correctness of the 1950’s?) The Shiftas are again used as the evil slavers who must be defeated. And indeed, this time they are wiped out to a man. This is pretty unusual for Dell comics to be so brutal. Jad-bal-ja has a minor role. Once again we get to see the Apes of Opar but under a different leadership than seen in Dell #28. Interestingly enough, in Dell #5 the apes were friendly with Tarzan, but now Du Bois has decided to depose them from Opar. It is a consistent story and opens lots of new possibilities for story lines. (Readers of Dell #38 that did not read Annual #1 might wonder how the white pygmies came to Opar.) The overhead shot looking down the Rock to the people below is a fine perspective panel. The ruins of Opar keep the same look of ancient Greek buildings used in previous Opar panels. The parting panel of Tarzan and Buto looking down at the apes is rather amusing. It can be compared to two young boys looking down at the girls they have just played a trick on, waiting for them to leave.
Jungle Skies - 2pp. Constellations are diagrammed. Big Dipper, Little Dipper, Draco, Cetus, Cassiopea, Southern Cross, and Orion.
Tarzan’s Transportation - 2pp. in color. Tantor, Jad-bal-ja, Dyal, Giant Eland, Trees, Dr. MacWhirtle’s helicopter.
2nd story “Tarzan Fulfills a Promise ”- 16pp.
Type -- Cathne/Athne - Rescue Prince Jathon
He reaches Athne as the ceremony begins. Jathon stands on a high pole, surrounded by mounted war elephants. Tarzan takes one of the Athneans elephants and rides it into the middle of the ordeal. Jathon jumps to Tarzan’s mount. They crash through a wall and make it to a river. The Athnean spears cannot find their marks. When they are close to Cathne, Tarzan catches the scent of Boy and Jad-bal-ja. In his rush to follow the scent, he falls in a hole. Jathon goes for help. Meanwhile, Boy and the lion awake in the cave, which they used to escape the floodwaters. There is no safe exit by the river so they go deep into the cave where they find an unconscious Tarzan. The ape-man manages to reach the top of the hole and uses vines to pull up Boy and Jad-bal-ja. Jathon returns to find them safe. Tarzan and Boy go to Cathne, thus fulfilling Tarzan’s promise to Boy. End.
The second story also uses some familiar characters from previous issues in a new story line. It starts as a simple trip to Cathne with Boy and turns into a disaster when a flash flood hits the area. Tarzan becomes distraught when he thinks Boy and Jad-bal-ja have been killed. Towards the end of the story, Tarzan loses his reserved nature when he catches their scent and falls into a hole. Actually, it looks as if he jumps in the hole, but the reader is informed later that he fell. It is a tightly woven story that follows its premise logically. The Cathne/Athne scenes are more interesting, and it could have been a stronger tale with more of a concentration on the two warring cities. Tarzan obviously is riding the Giant Eland, but for some reason it is referred to merely as Bara. Both Cathne and Athne use a triangular battle formation. The Cathnean uniforms consist of a blue tunic, green cape, yellow leggings, and a helmet with a red plume. The drawings of the terrific downpour of rain are very nicely handled. Jathon, standing on the pole during the Elephant Ordeal, is a three-panel page, which gives the artist a chance to make it very dramatic. The panels involving elephants have some of the best compositions. It is an above average story.
Jungle Home - 2 pp. in color. Pictures and text on how to build a tree house.
Boy’s Letter and Diary - 2 pp. text
3rd story “Tarzan Brings Aid to Alur”- 16pp.
Type -- Empire Restored - Argus
Tarzan tells the Ho-dons to take their boats towards the shore to draw the Torodons and their gryfs out into the open and to be prepared to attack when help arrives. Tarzan flies over the Lake of the Pteranodons, passed Thipdars, over the Valley of Dinosaurs, over the Forest of Wild Hogs, to the village of Jorah. He greets Jorah and Red Flower. Tarzan asks Jorah and his dyal riding men to help retake Alur. Flying overhead, Tarzan directs the dyal mounted army around a group of Garths.
The Ho-dons ships head towards the mainland. The Torodons and their gryfs prepare to drive them back into the water. Jorah’s troops swoop down on the Torodons. The dyals easily handle the gryfs. Jadon’s troops land. The battle pushes the Torodons back into the city. A Torodon grabs Jala, Jadon’s sister, and climbs a statue. He throws her towards the ground. Argus’ wing knocks the Torodon off the statue as Tarzan catches Jala. The city is saved. Jathon wants to give Tarzan a feast. Tarzan says the feast should be for Jorah and his people. Tarzan flies home on Argus, promising to return. End.
The third new story continues to reintroduce characters from previous issues. Jane, Boy, and the Waziri have their usual minor parts. Doctor Mervin’s growth pellets are used to create yet another giant beast, an eagle named Argus. Tarzan flies over many of the usual locations but also two areas are added from the actual novels of ERB: Pastar-ul-ved and Jad-ben-lul. Pastar-ul-ved looks very much like D?rer’s watercolor of a mountain. The city of Alur must have very poor defense. This is the third time that Tarzan has had to rid the city of invaders who have taken over the city. The city, itself, has made great improvements since last seen in Dell #24.2. It now looks like an ancient Greek city. A terrific drawing is the half page panel on page 52. King Jadon is now a white man with brown hair and normal shaped ears. Prince Ta-den is also now a white man. Ironically, Ta-den once helped Tarzan (Dell #24.2) teach the Waziri how to control the gryfs. Evidently the Torodons came so fast and furious this time that the Ho-dons could not stop the gryfs. Jorah and Red Flower are now drawn as black people. In Dell #19.2 they were drawn as white people. The Torodons lack the hyphens in their name, and their clothing no longer is drawn as furry. The Dyals appear to be invincible. The ships of King Jadon are quite elaborate. They hold about twenty soldiers and have three oars on each side. There are some great drawings in this story. Despite the changing of peoples races at will, it is quite an enjoyable tale that rates far above average.
Tyrannosaurus Teaser - 1 p. crossword puzzle.
Jungle Safari - 1p. picture word story
Tarzan’s Ape-English Dictionary - 8 pps. in color - 48 words (Pacco, the ape word for zebra, is included in with the ‘D’ words. Apparently, the paste-up artist thought the ‘p’ was a ‘d.’)
4th story -Tarzan’s Jungle World - “Boy Rides into Trouble” - 8 pp.
Type -- non-Tarzan story - Boy
The fourth story is a non-Tarzan story that features Boy.
Jungle Treasure -- 2 pp. Colored pictured and text about jewels. None of the stories are from the novels nor are they from the Dell comics.
Map of Pal-ul-don, The Lost Land -- 2pps in color. (Solution to Tyrannosaurus Teaser) [The color map of Pal-ul-don is quite helpful. It is similar to the map in Dell #20.]
5th story “Chako and the Collar of Shame” - 11pp.
Type -- Non-Tarzan Story - Baboon
The fifth story is a non-Tarzan story that features a baboon.
Inside Back Cover: Jungle Chants - Words and music to “Zulu Love Song.”
Back Cover: Color mask of the Bushongo tribe. Circa 1870 the Barmbe, a secret society for men, used the mask to scare away women. You are asked to cut it out and punch holes for a string to wear the mask.
* Beautifully illustrated with images relating to Burroughs’ life and works
* Concise introductions to all the novel series
* ALL the novels in the US public domain (works published prior to 1923), with individual contents tables
* Rare novels available in no other collection
* Features the original first edition text of TARZAN OF THE APES – the only digital edition to contain the purely unaltered text, with 1,193 more words than the digital text found in all other collections – discover the true Tarzan first edition!
* Images of how the books were first printed, giving your eReader a taste of the original texts
* Excellent formatting of the texts
* Special Contextual Pieces section, with reviews, articles and essays evaluating Burroughs’ contribution to literature
* Scholarly ordering of texts into chronological order and literary genres
Please note: novels published after 1922 are unable to appear in the collection due to US copyright restrictions. When new texts become available in your public domain, they will be added to the eBook as a free update.
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The Tarzan Series
TARZAN OF THE APES (1912)
THE RETURN OF TARZAN (1913)
THE BEASTS OF TARZAN (1914)
THE SON OF TARZAN (1914)
TARZAN AND THE JEWELS OF OPAR (1916)
JUNGLE TALES OF TARZAN (1917)
TARZAN THE UNTAMED (1921)
TARZAN THE TERRIBLE (1921)
The Barsoom Series
A PRINCESS OF MARS (1912)
THE GODS OF MARS (1914)
THE WARLORD OF MARS (1918)
THUVIA, MAID OF MARS (1920)
THE CHESSMEN OF MARS (1922)
THE MASTER MIND OF MARS (1928)
A FIGHTING MAN OF MARS (1931)
The Pellucidar Series
AT THE EARTH’S CORE (1914)
The Mucker Series
THE MUCKER (1914)
THE RETURN OF THE MUCKER (1916)
THE OAKDALE AFFAIR (1917)
The Jungle Adventures
THE ETERNAL LOVER (1913)
JUNGLE GIRL (1932)
THE LAD AND THE LION (1917)
The Caspak Series
THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT (1918)
THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT (1918)
OUT OF TIME’S ABYSS (1918)
The Moon Series
PART I: THE MOON MAID
The Western Novels
THE BANDIT OF HELL’S BEND (1924)
THE WAR CHIEF (1927)
APACHE DEVIL (1933)
The Venus Series
PIRATES OF VENUS (1932)
The Other Novels
THE MONSTER MEN (1913)
THE MAD KING (1914)
THE OUTLAW OF TORN (1914)
THE LOST CONTINENT (1916)
THE GIRL FROM FARRIS’S (1916)
H. R. H. THE RIDER (1918)
THE EFFICIENCY EXPERT (1921)
THE GIRL FROM HOLLYWOOD (1922)
THE RESURRECTION OF JIMBER-JAW (1937)
LIST OF REVIEWS AND ARTICLES
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In, "Warlord of Mars" by Edgar Rice Burroughs, John Carter must save his wife, Princess Dejah Thoris from his enemies. This mission takes him to the North Pole.
You would not have guessed that in infancy he had suckled at the breast of a hideous, hairy she-ape, nor that in all his conscious past since his parents had passed away in the little cabin by the landlocked harbor at the jungle's verge, he had known no other associates than the sullen bulls and the snarling cows of the tribe of Kerchak, the great ape.
Nor, could you have read the thoughts which passed through that active, healthy brain, the longings and desires and aspirations which the sight of Teeka inspired, would you have been any more inclined to give credence to the reality of the origin of the ape-man. For, from his thoughts alone, you could never have gleaned the truth—that he had been born to a gentle English lady or that his sire had been an English nobleman of time-honored lineage.
Lost to Tarzan of the Apes was the truth of his origin. That he was John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, with a seat in the House of Lords, he did not know, nor, knowing, would have understood....
He regretted the gay life of Brussels as he never had regretted the sins which had snatched him from that gayest of capitals, and as the days passed he came to center his resentment upon the representative in Congo land of the authority which had exiled him—his captain and immediate superior.
This officer was a cold, taciturn man, inspiring little love in those directly beneath him, yet respected and feared by the black soldiers of his little command.
Feeling alienated from his peers due to their physical differences, he discovers his true parents' cabin, where he first learns of others like himself in their books, with which he eventually teaches himself to read.
On his return from one visit to the cabin, he is attacked by a huge gorilla which he manages to kill with his father's knife, although he is terribly wounded in the struggle. As he grows up, Tarzan becomes a skilled hunter, gradually arousing the jealousy of Kerchak, the ape leader.
Later, an African tribe settles in the area, and Kala is killed by one of its hunters. Avenging himself on the killer, Tarzan begins an antagonistic relationship with the tribe, raiding its village for weapons and practicing cruel pranks on them. They, in turn, regard him as an evil spirit and attempt to placate him.
The twelve short stories Burroughs wrote later and collected as Jungle Tales of Tarzan occur in the period immediately following the arrival of the natives, the killing of Kala, and Tarzan's vengeance.
Finally Tarzan has amassed so much credit among the apes of the tribe that the envious Kerchak at last attacks him. In the ensuing battle Tarzan kills Kerchak and takes his place as "king" of the apes.
Subsequently, a new party of whites is marooned on the coast, including Jane Porter, the first white woman Tarzan has ever seen. Tarzan's cousin, William Cecil Clayton, unwitting usurper of the ape man's ancestral English estate, is also among the party. Tarzan spies on the newcomers, aids them, and saves Jane from the perils of the jungle. Absent when they are rescued, he is introduced further into the mysteries of civilization by French Naval Officer Paul D'Arnot, whom he saves from the natives. D'Arnot teaches Tarzan French and how to behave among white men, as well as serving as his guide to the nearest colonial outposts.
To the Reader of this Work:
ON THE ARIZONA HILLS
THE ESCAPE OF THE DEAD
MY ADVENT ON MARS
I ELUDE MY WATCH DOG
A FIGHT THAT WON FRIENDS
CHILD-RAISING ON MARS
A FAIR CAPTIVE FROM THE SKY
I LEARN THE LANGUAGE
CHAMPION AND CHIEF
WITH DEJAH THORIS
A PRISONER WITH POWER
LOVE-MAKING ON MARS
A DUEL TO THE DEATH
I sought out Dejah Thoris in the throng of departing chariots.
SOLA TELLS ME HER STORY
WE PLAN ESCAPE
A COSTLY RECAPTURE
CHAINED IN WARHOON
BATTLING IN THE ARENA
IN THE ATMOSPHERE FACTORY
The old man sat and talked with me for hours.
AN AIR SCOUT FOR ZODANGA
I FIND DEJAH
LOST IN THE SKY
TARS TARKAS FINDS A FRIEND
THE LOOTING OF ZODANGA
THROUGH CARNAGE TO JOY
FROM JOY TO DEATH
AT THE ARIZONA CAVE
Not since that other March night in 1866, when I had stood without that Arizona cave in which my still and lifeless body lay wrapped in the similitude of earthly death had I felt the irresistible attraction of the god of my profession.
With arms outstretched toward the red eye of the great star I stood praying for a return of that strange power which twice had drawn me through the immensity of space, praying as I had prayed on a thousand nights before during the long ten years that I had waited and hoped.
Suddenly a qualm of nausea swept over me, my senses swam, my knees gave beneath me and I pitched headlong to the ground upon the very verge of the dizzy bluff....
For six long Martian months I had haunted the vicinity of the hateful Temple of the Sun, within whose slow-revolving shaft, far beneath the surface of Mars, my princess lay entombed—but whether alive or dead I knew not. Had Phaidor's slim blade found that beloved heart? Time only would reveal the truth.
Six hundred and eighty-seven Martian days must come and go before the cell's door would again come opposite the tunnel's end where last I had seen my ever-beautiful Dejah Thoris.
Half of them had passed, or would on the morrow, yet vivid in my memory, obliterating every event that had come before or after, there remained the last scene before the gust of smoke blinded my eyes and the narrow slit that had given me sight of the interior of her cell closed between me and the Princess of Helium for a long Martian year.
As if it were yesterday, I still saw the beautiful face of Phaidor, daughter of Matai Shang, distorted with jealous rage and hatred as she sprang forward with raised dagger upon the woman I loved....
The date of my departure had been set; I was to leave in two weeks. No schoolboy counting the lagging hours that must pass before the beginning of "long vacation" released him to the delirious joys of the summer camp could have been filled with greater impatience or keener anticipation.
And then came a letter that started me for Africa twelve days ahead of my schedule.
Often am I in receipt of letters from strangers who have found something in a story of mine to commend or to condemn. My interest in this department of my correspondence is ever fresh. I opened this particular letter with all the zest of pleasurable anticipation with which I had opened so many others. The post-mark (Algiers) had aroused my interest and curiosity, especially at this time, since it was Algiers that was presently to witness the termination of my coming sea voyage in search of sport and adventure.
Before the reading of that letter was completed lions and lion-hunting had fled my thoughts, and I was in a state of excitement bordering upon frenzy.
It—well, read it yourself, and see if you, too, do not find food for frantic conjecture, for tantalizing doubts, and for a great hope....
"Ah, Thuvia of Ptarth," he cried, "you are cold even before the fiery blasts of my consuming love! No harder than your heart, nor colder is the hard, cold ersite of this thrice happy bench which supports your divine and fadeless form! Tell me, O Thuvia of Ptarth, that I may still hope—that though you do not love me now, yet some day, some day, my princess, I—"
The girl sprang to her feet with an exclamation of surprise and displeasure. Her queenly head was poised haughtily upon her smooth red shoulders. Her dark eyes looked angrily into those of the man.
"You forget yourself, and the customs of Barsoom, Astok," she said. "I have given you no right thus to address the daughter of Thuvan Dihn, nor have you won such a right."
The man reached suddenly forth and grasped her by the arm.
"You shall be my princess!" he cried. "By the breast of Issus, thou shalt, nor shall any other come between Astok, Prince of Dusar, and his heart's desire. Tell me that there is another, and I shall cut out his foul heart and fling it to the wild calots of the dead sea-bottoms!"
At touch of the man's hand upon her flesh the girl went pallid beneath her coppery skin, for the persons of the royal women of the courts of Mars are held but little less than sacred. The act of Astok, Prince of Dusar, was profanation. There was no terror in the eyes of Thuvia of Ptarth—only horror for the thing the man had done and for its possible consequences....
Shea had just beaten me at chess, as usual, and, also as usual, I had gleaned what questionable satisfaction I might by twitting him with this indication of failing mentality by calling his attention for the
nth time to that theory, propounded by certain scientists, which is based upon the assertion that phenomenal chess players are always found to be from the ranks of children under twelve, adults over seventy-two or the mentally defective—a theory that is lightly ignored upon those rare occasions that I win. Shea had gone to bed and I should have followed suit, for we are always in the saddle here before sunrise; but instead I sat there before the chess table in the library, idly blowing smoke at the dishonored head of my defeated king.
While thus profitably employed I heard the east door of the living-room open and someone enter. I thought it was Shea returning to speak with me on some matter of tomorrow's work; but when I raised my eyes to the doorway that connects the two rooms I saw framed there the figure of a bronzed giant, his otherwise naked body trapped with a jewel-encrusted harness from which there hung at one side an ornate short-sword and at the other a pistol of strange pattern. The black hair, the steel-gray eyes, brave and smiling, the noble features—I recognized them at once, and leaping to my feet I advanced with outstretched hand.
"John Carter!" I cried. "You?"...
His football triumphs were in the past, his continued baseball successes a foregone conclusion—if he won to-night his cup of happiness, and an unassailably dominant position among his fellows, would be assured, leaving nothing more, in so far as Jimmy reasoned, to be desired from four years attendance at one of America’s oldest and most famous universities.
The youth who would dispute the right to championship honors with Jimmy was a dark horse to the extent that he was a freshman, and, therefore, practically unknown. He had worked hard, however, and given a good account of himself in his preparations for the battle, and there were rumors, as there always are about every campus, of marvelous exploits prior to his college days. It was even darkly hinted that he was a professional pugilist. As a matter of fact, he was the best exponent of the manly art of self-defense that Jimmy Torrance had ever faced, and in addition thereto he outweighed the senior and outreached him.
The boxing contest, as the faculty members of the athletic committee preferred to call it, was, from the tap of the gong, as pretty a two-fisted scrap as ever any aggregation of low-browed fight fans witnessed. The details of this gory contest, while interesting, have no particular bearing upon the development of this tale. What interests us is the outcome, which occurred in the middle of a very bloody fourth round, in which Jimmy Torrance scored a clean knock-out....
Here is a story that has lain dormant for seven hundred years. At first it was suppressed by one of the Plantagenet kings of England. Later it was forgotten. I happened to dig it up by accident. The accident being the relationship of my wife's cousin to a certain Father Superior in a very ancient monastery in Europe.
He let me pry about among a quantity of mildewed and musty manuscripts and I came across this. It is very interesting—partially since it is a bit of hitherto unrecorded history, but principally from the fact that it records the story of a most remarkable revenge and the adventurous life of its innocent victim—Richard, the lost prince of England.
In the retelling of it, I have left out most of the history. What interested me was the unique character about whom the tale revolves—the visored horseman who—but let us wait until we get to him.
It all happened in the thirteenth century, and while it was happening, it shook England from north to south and from east to west; and reached across the channel and shook France. It started, directly, in the London palace of Henry III, and was the result of a quarrel between the King and his powerful brother-in-law, Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester.
Never mind the quarrel, that's history, and you can read all about it at your leisure. But on this June day in the year of our Lord 1243, Henry so forgot himself as to very unjustly accuse De Montfort of treason in the presence of a number of the King's gentlemen....
There were no porters within reach of Hauptmann Schneider so he vented his Prussian spleen upon the askaris nearest at hand, yet with greater circumspection since these men bore loaded rifles—and the three white men were alone with them in the heart of Africa.
Ahead of the hauptmann marched half his company, behind him the other half—thus were the dangers of the savage jungle minimized for the German captain. At the forefront of the column staggered two naked savages fastened to each other by a neck chain. These were the native guides impressed into the service of Kultur and upon their poor, bruised bodies Kultur's brand was revealed in divers cruel wounds and bruises.
Thus even in darkest Africa was the light of German civilization commencing to reflect itself upon the undeserving natives just as at the same period, the fall of 1914, it was shedding its glorious effulgence upon benighted Belgium.
It is true that the guides had led the party astray; but this is the way of most African guides. Nor did it matter that ignorance rather than evil intent had been the cause of their failure. It was enough for Hauptmann Fritz Schneider to know that he was lost in the African wilderness and that he had at hand human beings less powerful than he who could be made to suffer by torture. That he did not kill them outright was partially due to a faint hope that they might eventually prove the means of extricating him from his difficulties and partially that so long as they lived they might still be made to suffer.
"Wot the 'ell?" ejaculated one of the crew.
"A white man!" muttered the mate, and then: "Man the oars, boys, and we'll just pull over an' see what he wants."
When they came close to the shore they saw an emaciated creature with scant white locks tangled and matted. The thin, bent body was naked but for a loin cloth. Tears were rolling down the sunken pock-marked cheeks. The man jabbered at them in a strange tongue.
"Rooshun," hazarded the mate. "Savvy English?" he called to the man.
He did, and in that tongue, brokenly and haltingly, as though it had been many years since he had used it, he begged them to take him with them away from this awful country. Once on board the Marjorie W. the stranger told his rescuers a pitiful tale of privation, hardships, and torture, extending over a period of ten years. How he happened to have come to Africa he did not tell them, leaving them to assume he had forgotten the incidents of his life prior to the frightful ordeals that had wrecked him mentally and physically. He did not even tell them his true name, and so they knew him only as Michael Sabrov, nor was there any resemblance between this sorry wreck and the virile, though unprincipled, Alexis Paulvitch of old...
As he dropped the last grisly fragment of the dismembered and mutilated body into the small vat of nitric acid that was to devour every trace of the horrid evidence which might easily send him to the gallows, the man sank weakly into a chair and throwing his body forward upon his great, teak desk buried his face in his arms, breaking into dry, moaning sobs.
Beads of perspiration followed the seams of his high, wrinkled forehead, replacing the tears which might have lessened the pressure upon his overwrought nerves. His slender frame shook, as with ague, and at times was racked by a convulsive shudder. A sudden step upon the stairway leading to his workshop brought him trembling and wide eyed to his feet, staring fearfully at the locked and bolted door.
Although he knew perfectly well whose the advancing footfalls were, he was all but overcome by the madness of apprehension as they came softly nearer and nearer to the barred door. At last they halted before it, to be followed by a gentle knock.
"Daddy!" came the sweet tones of a girl's voice.
The man made an effort to take a firm grasp upon himself that no tell-tale evidence of his emotion might be betrayed in his speech.
"Daddy!" called the girl again, a trace of anxiety in her voice this time. "What IS the matter with you, and what ARE you doing? You've been shut up in that hateful old room for three days now without a morsel to eat, and in all likelihood without a wink of sleep. You'll kill yourself with your stuffy old experiments."
The man's face softened....
I am forced to admit that even though I had traveled a long distance to place Bowen Tyler's manuscript in the hands of his father, I was still a trifle skeptical as to its sincerity, since I could not but recall that it had not been many years since Bowen had been one of the most notorious practical jokers of his alma mater. The truth was that as I sat in the Tyler library at Santa Monica I commenced to feel a trifle foolish and to wish that I had merely forwarded the manuscript by express instead of bearing it personally, for I confess that I do not enjoy being laughed at. I have a well-developed sense of humor—when the joke is not on me.
Mr. Tyler, Sr., was expected almost hourly. The last steamer in from Honolulu had brought information of the date of the expected sailing of his yacht
Toreador, which was now twenty-four hours overdue. Mr. Tyler's assistant secretary, who had been left at home, assured me that there was no doubt but that the
Toreador had sailed as promised, since he knew his employer well enough to be positive that nothing short of an act of God would prevent his doing what he had planned to do. I was also aware of the fact that the sending apparatus of the
Toreador's wireless equipment was sealed, and that it would only be used in event of dire necessity. There was, therefore, nothing to do but wait, and we waited.
We discussed the manuscript and hazarded guesses concerning it and the strange events it narrated. The torpedoing of the liner upon which Bowen J. Tyler, Jr., had taken passage for France to join the American Ambulance was a well-known fact, and I had further substantiated by wire to the New York office of the owners, that a Miss La Rue had been booked for passage. Further, neither she nor Bowen had been mentioned among the list of survivors; nor had the body of either of them been recovered....
After reading this far, my interest, which already had been stimulated by the finding of the manuscript, was approaching the boiling-point. I had come to Greenland for the summer, on the advice of my physician, and was slowly being bored to extinction, as I had thoughtlessly neglected to bring sufficient reading-matter. Being an indifferent fisherman, my enthusiasm for this form of sport soon waned; yet in the absence of other forms of recreation I was now risking my life in an entirely inadequate boat off Cape Farewell at the southernmost extremity of Greenland.
Greenland! As a descriptive appellation, it is a sorry joke—but my story has nothing to do with Greenland, nothing to do with me; so I shall get through with the one and the other as rapidly as possible....
From out of the meagerness of our censored histories we learned that for fifteen years after the cessation of diplomatic relations between the United States of North America and the belligerent nations of the Old World, news of more or less doubtful authenticity filtered, from time to time, into the Western Hemisphere from the Eastern.
Then came the fruition of that historic propaganda which is best described by its own slogan: "The East for the East—the West for the West," and all further intercourse was stopped by statute.
Even prior to this, transoceanic commerce had practically ceased, owing to the perils and hazards of the mine-strewn waters of both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Just when submarine activities ended we do not know but the last vessel of this type sighted by a Pan-American merchantman was the huge Q 138, which discharged twenty-nine torpedoes at a Brazilian tank steamer off the Bermudas in the fall of 1972. A heavy sea and the excellent seamanship of the master of the Brazilian permitted the Pan-American to escape and report this last of a long series of outrages upon our commerce. God alone knows how many hundreds of our ancient ships fell prey to the roving steel sharks of blood-frenzied Europe. Countless were the vessels and men that passed over our eastern and western horizons never to return; but whether they met their fates before the belching tubes of submarines or among the aimlessly drifting mine fields, no man lived to tell.
Upon the fourth day of September, 1916, he set out with four companions, Sinclair, Brady, James, and Tippet, to search along the base of the barrier cliffs for a point at which they might be scaled.
Through the heavy Caspakian air, beneath the swollen sun, the five men marched northwest from Fort Dinosaur, now waist-deep in lush, jungle grasses starred with myriad gorgeous blooms, now across open meadow-land and parklike expanses and again plunging into dense forests of eucalyptus and acacia and giant arboreous ferns with feathered fronds waving gently a hundred feet above their heads.
About them upon the ground, among the trees and in the air over them moved and swung and soared the countless forms of Caspak's teeming life. Always were they menaced by some frightful thing and seldom were their rifles cool, yet even in the brief time they had dwelt upon Caprona they had become callous to danger, so that they swung along laughing and chatting like soldiers on a summer hike....
Apparently less cautious was the hunted thing moving even as silently as the lion a hundred paces ahead of the tawny carnivore, for instead of skirting the moon-splashed natural clearings it passed directly across them, and by the tortuous record of its spoor it might indeed be guessed that it sought these avenues of least resistance, as well it might, since, unlike its grim stalker, it walked erect upon two feet—it walked upon two feet and was hairless except for a black thatch upon its head; its arms were well shaped and muscular; its hands powerful and slender with long tapering fingers and thumbs reaching almost to the first joint of the index fingers. Its legs too were shapely but its feet departed from the standards of all races of men, except possibly a few of the lowest races, in that the great toes protruded at right angles from the foot.
Pausing momentarily in the full light of the gorgeous African moon the creature turned an attentive ear to the rear and then, his head lifted, his features might readily have been discerned in the moonlight. They were strong, clean cut, and regular—features that would have attracted attention for their masculine beauty in any of the great capitals of the world. But was this thing a man? It would have been hard for a watcher in the trees to have decided as the lion's prey resumed its way across the silver tapestry that Luna had laid upon the floor of the dismal jungle, for from beneath the loin cloth of black fur that girdled its thighs there depended a long hairless, white tail...
Quotes from the book:
“We are, all of us, creatures of habit, and when the seeeming necessity for schooling ourselves in new ways ceases to exist, we fall naturally and easily into the manner and customs which long usage has implanted ineradicably within us.”
“The entire affair is shrouded in mystery,” said D'Arnot. “I have it on the best of authority that neither the police nor the special agents of the general staff have the faintest conception of how it was accomplished. All they know, all that anyone knows, is that Nikolas Rokoff has escaped.”
“The ape-man swung himself lightly to the deck. About him, but at a respectful distance, stood a half-dozen sailors armed with rifles and revolvers. Facing him was Paulvitch.”
“If you want to know what great pulp fiction is like, read Edgar Rice Burroughs.” (Scott Rachul, goodreads.com)
“Any fans of the Tarzan books will like this book as much if not more than the first two.” (Justin Anthony, goodreads.com)
“This is probably my favorite Tarzan book so far. Lots of diversity and action.” (Isaac, goodreads.com)