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1996 ~ Over 10,000 Web Pages in Archive
Hillman Log Notes Series
THE GODS OF MARS
ERB Commenced writing this second Mars book
on July 14, 1912
First Appearance: All-Story Magazine
1913 January - May
First Hardcover Edition: A.C. McClurg &
September 28, 1918 ~ 348 pages
Read the online public domain version of this
GODS OF MARS
A Study Guide for Fans and Researchers
Part I (Visible Answers Version)
For an alternate version with invisible answers go to:
These log notes sequentially pinpoint the important
events throughout the novel.
The information is presented in the form
of 425 questions and answers.
The answers are invisible until the reader drags
his mouse across the screen
which highlights the hidden answer text.
Each chapter title bar has links to the actual
TOTAL POINTS = 425
THE GODS OF MARS
~ 10 Questions
1. Years since Captain John Carter's body was placed in a Richmond,
Virginia, cemetery: 12 years.
2. Odd interment instructions: Open casket placed in a vault opened
only from the inside.
3. Accomplishments during his 10 years on Mars: He fought for and against
both green and red Martians, won Dejah Thoris, Princess of Helium for his
wife, and became a prince in the house of Tardos Mors, Jeddak of Helium.
4. Message brought to ERB by old Ben, his body servant: "Meet me tomorrow.
Hotel Raleigh. Richmond. John Carter"
5. Number of years Burroughs has known Carter as a man of 30:
6. The secret Carter has unraveled: how to traverse the trackless void
between Earth and Mars.
7. Reason for his return to Earth: To see ERB before he dies and to
give him another manuscript.
8. Carter's prediction for tonight: He will die for the 4th time.
9. Time spent on Earth writing The current manuscript: 3 months.
10. ERB's last sight of Carter: Bolting the door to the crypt from
I. THE PLANT MEN ~ 30 Questions
1. Date of John Carter's return to Mars: Early March 1886
2. Date of Carter's first visit to Mars: March 1866
3. Carter's nightly prayer for 10 years as he stood with arms outstretched
toward Mars: For "a return of that strange power which twice had drawn
him through the immensity of space to Barsoom."
4. Result of his breaking free of his body's sudden paralysis: A sharp
click and he finds himself standing naked beside his lifeless Earth body.
5. Sight that greeted him after a period of unthinkable cold and utter
darkness: Another world, hot sun shining through an opening in the dome
of a beautiful trimmed forest above him.
6. Carter's sudden fear: That he has gone to another planet rather
7. The vegetation bed upon which he lay: Close-cropped parklike sward
of red grass-like vegetation.
8. A very un-Martian scene in the distance: A vast blue sea.
9. Conditions that make his first steps difficult: Reaction of his
Earth muscles to the lower gravity and thinner air.
10. Colours of the giant trees around him: Black, white, azure, scarlet,
11. Description of the banks of the mighty river feeding the sea: Scarlet
vegetation and perpendicular cliffs
Appearance of the first creatures he saw (the Plant Men):
12. . . . Body: hideous, odd, grotesque, hairless blue body, 12 feet
tall but somewhat human in shape.
13. . . . arms: short arms like elephant trunks with cutting talons
and sucking mouths on the end ~ mouths also emit sound
14. . . . head: covered with long, wiggling, jet-black, angleworm-size
hair which serve as ears
15. . . . eye: one white protruding eyeball
16. . . . nose and mouth: a ragged hole for a nose with no mouth
on the head
17. . . . feet: somewhat human in shape but huge being three feet long
and flat and broad
18. . . . feeding method: cuts and sucks grass with razor-like talons
and a mouth on the palm of each "hand."
19. . . . tail: a massive 6-foot-long round appendage tapering to a
flat thin blade trailing at right angles to the ground
20. . . . offspring: tiny replicas of the creature dangle from the
armpits by a small stem sprouting out of their heads
21. . . . locomotion: rapid kangaroo-like leaps of 30 feet.
22. Original source of all life forms on Barsoom: the Tree of Life
23. Carter's unusual means of travel across the Martian meadows: giant
leaps and bounds thanks to his Earth muscles
24. The plant men's prey: 2 men and 4 women of differing green Martian
25: Green Martian appearance: 15' tall, white curving tusks, protruding
eyes on the sides of their heads, antennae ears from foreheads, 4 arms.
26. Main weapon of the plant men: leaps and powerful swinging tail.
27. Fate of all but one of the green Martians: killed by the great
tails and talons of the plant men.
28. Carter's reaction: he picks up a long sword and races to the aid
of the surviving green man.
29. Reason for the coming of plant men reinforcements: a man shrieking
and waving directions from the cliff face.
30. The identity of Carter's battle companion: Tars Tarkas, Jeddak
of Thark ~ Carter's great friend, statesman and mighty general.
II: A FOREST BATTLE ~ 15 Q
1. Reason for the race to the cliffs: To find a cave or ledge to aid
them in their battle with the hordes of plant men.
2. Cliff face description: Smooth and perpendicular rising to over
5,000' ~ laced with gold veins and precious jewels ~ caves are all too
high to reach.
3. Only hope for escape: Reach and scale the giant trees nearest the
4. The problem the Thark will have with this plan: Green warriors hate
to flee and are not used to climbing.
5. Reinforcements to assist the plant men: The great white apes of
6. Appearance of the plant men allies: Somewhat like an Africa gorilla
but are white, walk upright, are 15 feet tall with 4 arms.
7. Reason for Tars Tarkas' return from the trees: To save Carter who
has been brought down.
8. Surprise at the giant tree: An opening in the trunk.
9. What lay within the tree opening: A ladder reaching up the hollow
tree toward light above.
10. Length of climb to daylight opening: 500 feet.
11. Destination of the tree limb: Ledge and cave opening in the cliff
12. Final fate of Tars Tarkas' companions: White apes devour their
flesh after the plant men have sucked out the blood.
13. Obstruction at the end of the cave tunnel: A wooden door.
14. What Carter and Tars Tarkas found beyond the door: An empty dimly
15. What followed the slamming of the door: Sound of a cruel and mocking
III: THE CHAMBER OF MYSTERY ~ 20 Q
1. Why the Jeddak and Princess of Helium offered fabulous rewards:
to find John Carter who disappeared at the atmosphere plant after saving
2. Conclusion reached about his disappearance: He had taken the final
pilgrimage down the River Iss to the Valley Dor.
3. News of Dejah Thoris: She still lives.
4. The name of Carter's present location: The Valley Dor by the Lost
Sea of Korus.
5. Reason for Tars Tarkas making the pilgrimage: To be with his lost
love and John Carter in paradise.
6. What the Valley Dor means to Martians: Heaven, a final resting place
-- a valley of love and peace.
7. Fate of the billions who have made the pilgrimage: A cruel demise
by the plant men and white apes.
8. Traditional fate of anyone who returns from the Valley Dor: The
blasphemer will be killed.
9. Martian equivalent of "Between the devil and the deep blue sea":
"between the wild thoat of certainty and the mad zitidar of fact."
10. What the dim light of the radium illuminator
revealed: a 200' chamber cut out of the cliff with the rock walls containing
gold and precious stones and two locked doorways.
11. Disturbing warning: Another cruel mocking laugh followed by a threat
that they have no hope -- there is no escape or resurrection for the dead.
12. The name of this place: The Golden Cliffs of the Mountains of Otz
-- part of the fortresses of the Holy Therns.
13. Their attackers: Banths.
14. Appearance of Barsoomian lions: Hairless
with mane, long lithe yellow body with 10 legs, enormous jaws with rows
15. What prompted each appearance of a banth: When the defenders' backs
are turned to a concealed doorway.
16. What Carter saw beyond the revolving door that appeared in the
mirror on Tars Tarkas' harness: A well-lit chamber with banths and red
Martians chained to the wall, and an evil white-skinned man with long yellow
17. What Carter faced when he dashed through the revolving door: The
white man's radium pistol.
18. Carter's statement that shocked his white opponent: "What if I
were from the Temple of Issus?"
19. Carter's problem while battling the second opponent: He is weak
from exertion and lack of food and sleep.
20. Action that saved the fallen Carter from the second attacker's
sword: He reaches and fires the first attacker's revolver.
IV: THUVIA ~ 20 Q
1. Carter's reason for wanting to go through the revolving door: To
assist Tars Tarkas against the banths.
2. The secret to opening the revolving door: The Martian slave girl
uses the dead keeper's keys
3. The proverb that inspires fighting Tharks: "Leave to a Thark his
head and one hand and he may yet conquer."
4. Reason for the quick victory against the six banths: The slave girl
tames them by speaking to them in low tones.
5. How the girl knew of John Carter: The Therns who control the area
know of everything in the outside world.
6. Fate planned for the girl now they have tired of her after 15 years
and since theyfear her powers: Death -- the plant men will suck her blood
and the Holy Therns are to eat her flesh.
7. Abode of the Holy Therns: In luxurious palaces and on the outer
slopes overlooking the valley.
8. How may some of those making the pilgrimage fall into the clutches
of the Therns: By escaping the plant men and apes or by Therns claiming
a victim they covet.
9. Importance of the Temple of Issus?: "A heaven within a heaven" to
which the Therns journey - no one ever escapes its walls.
10. Why the plant men and apes were held sacred: Therns believe this
is how they spend their lives if they die before age 1000 and can't reach
the Temple of Issus.
11. What happens to their soul if their reincarnation in the plant
men and apes dies before the allotted time: it passes into the carcass
of a slimy reptile-like silian for eternity.
12. Carter's justification for their escape from the Valley Dor: The
fable is a rank and wicked deception, the valley is not sacred and the
Therns are not holy. It is their duty to expose the lie.
13. The reason Carter felt they would not be believed: Mortals are
too wedded to their stupid infatuation for impossible superstitions and
14. Description of the party that had now joined Carter in escaping:
Thuvia and ten red Martians, now armed with weapons of the two dead Therns.
15. The control that Holy Therns had over all of Barsoom: Secret temples
and spies in every community.
16. Special ornament worn by the thern they meet in the arms storeroom:
A gold circlet on his head containing a large stone identical to the one
worn by the keeper of the atmosphere plant.
17. Characteristic of Barsoom's rarest jewel: It scintillates nine
rays: seven familiar Earth colours and two of wondrous beauty that are
unique to Barsoom.
18. How Thuvia got revenge for 15 years of maltreatment: She shoots
the Holy Thern dead.
19. Thuvia's plan for Carter: To wear the Sator Throg's trappings and
yellow wig to pass as a Holy Thern of the Tenth Cycle.
20. Action taken after retrieving arms from the weapons room: Sleep
while the released prisoners keep watch.
V: CORRIDORS OF PERIL ~ 20 Q
1. Reason for Carter's sudden awakening: Attack by 12 lesser therns
that kills the red men in the party.
2. Carter's ruse: he poses as Sator Throg leading slaves with the captured
Tars Tarkas and dead body of Carter (actually the body of Sator Throg).
3. Carter's orders to the therns: Throw the body to the plant men and
return to their quarters.
4. Why the thern leader's suspicions were aroused: He sees the body's
bald head and familiar face.
5. What Carter needed to ease the pain of his wounds: The healing salves
and lotions of the green Martian women.
6. The escapees next destination: To the top of the cliffs and through
the gardens to the inner courts and through the temples to the outer courts
7. Number of thern defenders: One million.
8. Number of hours that Carter and Tars Tarkas had slept in the arms
room: 14 hours.
9. Conditions on Barsoom created by the rare atmosphere: Hot days and
cold nights with no twilight in between.
10. Reason for the carefully trimmed trees in the valley: Herds of
plant men strip the leaves as high up as they can reach.
11. Duty of the thern sentry standing on the cliff balcony: To direct
the plant men to Martians arriving on the river Issus.
12. Devourers of the victims' flesh after the plant men sucked out
the blood: The great white apes.
13. Reason Sator Throg spared Thuvia's life: The novelty of her strange
power over banths.
14. Means of disposing of the bodies of prisoners who die in chains:
They are eaten by roaming banths
15. Carter's suggestion for aiding their escape: For Thuvia tocall
50 banths to accompany them.
16. Appearance of the offspring of prisoners kept underground: They
are deformed, maimed and sightless and possess corpse-like skin. They are
sprawled in heaps like something out of Dante's Inferno.
17. Reason for no sign of therns: Afraid to come to the lower levels
at night because of attacks from banths and prisoners.
18. Reason for the fortresses, army of defenders, and the many sentries
in the inner court: Periodic raids from the black pirates of Barsoom.
19. Reaction of the banths to the open courtyard door and the cool
night odours: They swarm out across the gardens.
20. Sudden actions of the rooftop sentries: Cries of alarm from the
roofs of every temple and fortress.
VI: THE BLACK PIRATES OF BARSOOM ~ 15 Q
1. Cause of the sentries' alarm: Air attack from the black pirates
2. Therns' weapons of defence: Rifles with shields
3. Two types of black pirate aircraft: Smaller
two-man fliers and larger ships dropping bombs from high altitudes.
4. Suspected home of the pirates: Rumoured to
be from the lesser moon of Barsoom.
5. Reason for attacks: To take away arms and ammunition, to practice
warfare, and to capture young girls for sacrifice.
6. Appearance of the pirates: Large human forms, over six feet tall,
handsome features, black eyes and skin.
7. Carter's odd-for-a-Southerner observation: Their skin with the appearance
of polished ebony adds to their beauty.
8. Reason the therns didn't attack the unguarded fliers on the ground
during the land battles: They fear massive reprisals.
9. The common enemy that both pirates and therns suddenly must defend
10. Means of escape chosen by Carter: One of the unattended pirate
11. Problem with the escape plan: The small flier cannot lift all three
12. Carter's solution: He jumps off sending the reluctant Thuvia and
Tars Tarkas aloft without him.
13. Carter's means of escape from the attacking horde of black pirates:
He leaps to grasp a trailing anchor from a large retreating airship.
14. Direction taken by the 10-man aircraft: South.
15. What Carter encountered when he climbed to the ship's deck rail:
The fierce face of a black pirate.
VII: A FAIR GODDESS ~ 20 Q
1. What saved Carter from the pirate's revolver: the hammer falls on
an empty chamber.
2. Reason Carter didn't immediately let the pirate fall to his death:
He is afraid his death scream will warn the ship's crew.
3. Carter's ally in attacking the ship's sleeping crew: A young white
4. Fate of the first three of the seven crew men: Carter throws two
overboard and the girl shoots one.
5. What Carter learned about the girl after he defeated the remaining
crewmen: She is Phaidor, daughter of Matai Shang, Holy Hekkador of the
Holy Therns, Father of Therns, Master of Life and Death upon barsoom, Brother
of Issus, Princess of Life Eternal.
6. Reason for Phaidor's surprise over Carter's treatment of the pirate
prisoner: She wonders why he doesn't kill the man.
7. Carter's change of course for the flier: He turns it around and
speeds north at high altitude.
8. Reason for a later change of altitude: They were flying too high
and are losing consciousness from lack of air.
9. Phaidor's claim to immortality: Only therns can obtain it in the
10. Carter's proof that the pirates are not from the moon Thuria: His
prisoner had passed out from lack of oxygen at high altitudes.
11. Phaidor's act of frustration: She stamps her little foot.
12. Carter's destination: Helium
13. What Carter's removal of his yellow thern wig revealed: His head
of closely cropped black hair.
14. The race that traced their lineage directly
to the Tree of Life in the Valley Dor three million years ago: The
First Born of Barsoom -- the "black pirates."
15. Significance of the Tree of Life: The tree
on which all Barsoomian life evolved in the Valley Dor.
16. The four types of life that grew out of the
four-sectioned buds: Plant man, 16-legged worm, white ape, and black man.
17. The first life form to break out of the hard
shell: Black man who broke open the other shells populating the planet.
18. The life form from which therns evolved:
Great White Apes
19. More plant man characteristics: Detached
themselves from the Tree of Life before it died, bisexual, tiny brain and
no sense of self-preservation.
20. The reason for Xotar's telling of this detailed history: To distract
Carter from seeing an approaching battleship.
VIII: THE DEPTHS OF OMEAN ~ 35 Q
1. Carter's reaction upon seeing the looming battleship: He reversed
the engines which drops his craft 100 feet and he then speeds upward to
ram the propellers of the attacking ship.
2. Action that tooks place before Carter can dislodge his flier from
the battleship: A boarding party swarms over his deck and he is captured.
3. Carter's thoughts upon being bound by his captors: His Earth muscles
can easily break his bonds at any time.
4. The number of crew members on the battleship: 1000
5. Why Carter considered his black captors to be inferior to the red
men of Barsoom: They are lacking in refinement and chivalry and make vulgar
comments about their captives.
6. Reason the pirates looked more favourably upon Carter: He has defeated
and wears the harness of their common hereditary foes, the therns.
7. Appearance of splendour on the ship: Harnesses
encrusted with precious metals and gems, polished skeel wood decks, beautifully
grained and bejeweled sorapus mixed with shiny aluminum on the cabin surfaces,
gold hand rails, shining metal guns.
8. What Carter perceived to be his only sanctuary on Barsoom if he
is to escape: Helium - Martians elsewhere would kill him as a blasphemer
who escaped the Valley Dor.
9. Surprising action of Phaidor to whom Carter was bound: She stares
and appears to be attracted to Carter.
10. Identity and fate of thern prisoners taken by the pirates over
the years: They are all women and none have returned to tell of their experiences.
11. Phaidor's justification of their treatment of "lesser" Martians:
Therns are holy and all life is supported to support their race.
12. Justification for eating human flesh: The Holy Therns are gods
and all lower orders are the equivalent of beasts.
13. What Carter would do if he agreed to Phaidor's offer of adoption
by the Therns: Turn back all voyagers before they could enter the Valley
Dor and exterminate all the plant men and Great White Apes.
14. Phaidor's reaction to this plan: Shock and horror at his sacrilege.
15. Change of scenery below: South polar ice cap, barren of life.
16. Destination of the battleship: Back to the Otz Valley and the secret
subterranean entrance to the Holy Land and the Temple of Issus.
17. Site of the Otz Valley: In a mighty depression at the south pole,
sunk thousands of feet below the surrounding surface.
18. Location of the Otz Mountains that circle the inner valley of Dor
which contains the Lost Sea of Korus: 100 miles north of the boundary of
Otz valley before the ice fields.
19. Location of the Golden Temple of Issus (in the Land of the First
Born): On the shore of the Lost Sea of Korus.
20. Number of people who have escaped the Land of the First Born: None,
although one escaped the Valley of Dor controlled by the Therns.
21. Nature of the riverbed of the River Iss: Far below the ice fields
and then through an open canyon across the Valley Dor.
22. Location of the villages of lost souls: In a strip between the
ice cap barrier and the Otz mountains.
23. Situation faced by the "lost souls": They are left alone as they
can never escape this area -- they war among themselves.
24. What Martians making the pilgrimage to the Valley Dor and the Therns
journey to the Temple of Issus had in common: Both have been duped and
will meet a terrible end rather than enter heaven.
25. Location of the subterranean entrance: Over the crest of a low,
black, flat-topped mountain and through an opening 1,000 feet wide.
26. Length of time to descend the shaft into
the subterranean world of the First Born: 1/2 hour.
27. Carter's first view of the subterranean world:
Thousands of ships floating on a buried sea in under vast open rock dome
lit by phosphorescent radiance.
28. Replacement for the ship's large aerial propellers:
Smaller more powerful water propellers to propel the ship across the water
29. Source of water for this huge subterranean
sea: Waters from Issus and Korus above.
30. Method of controlling the sea level: Pumping
stations that pump the excess water to the reservoirs to the north which
supplies the red men with irrigation water for their canals.
31. Structures built on the numerous islands: Roofless circular buildings
with heavily barred windows guarded by armed men.
32. The battleship's destination: A larger island with an roofless
oval natatorium-like structure containing a long tank of water.
33. Journey taken by the tank's floating submarine
vessel that they have boarded: Down into the depths of the pool.
34. Destination of the submarine: The gardens of Issus beside the Golden
35. Phaidor's reaction: A fit of panic in which she declares her love
for Carter and embraces him.
IX: ISSUS, GODDESS OF LIFE ETERNAL ~ 20 Q
1. Reason for Carter's embarrassment over Phaidor's show of affection:
He has never been a ladies man -- has always been a fighting man.
2. How Carter tried to discourage Phaidor affections: He declares his
love for Dejah Thoris.
3. Phaidor's reaction to her rejection: Rage and threats followed by
4. Route followed by the submarine craft: Down to great dark depths
and then forward through a narrow, rock-lined passage followed by a rise
to a lit surface.
5. Where the sub surfaced: A platform surrounded pool in a subterranean
vault to which enter many lighted passageways.
6. Source of power for the elevator car that
carries them rapidly up through a shaft: Electromagnetic energy.
7. The name of the area of unspeakable beauty in which they enter:
Gardens of the Temple of Issus
8. Identity of the slaves that served the area: Princesses and goddesses
captured from the red Martian and thern races.
9. The order that came from Issus: She wishes to look upon the daughter
of Matai Shang and the alien who had been a Prince of Helium.
10. Position taken by the prisoners for their entrance to the chamber
of Issus, Goddess of Life Eternal: They crawl backward on their hands and
knees in a degrading fashion.
11. Carter's reason for putting up with this indignity: To live to
see his beloved Dejah Thoris.
12. Issus' decision for Phaidra's future: To serve for one year as
her slave after which time she must die.
13. Issus' decision for Carter's fate: To be taken as a prisoner to
the Isle of Shador on the Sea of Omean.
14. Reason for Xodar's special treatment of John Carter: He is grateful
for Carter's having spared his life.
15. Why Issus might bring Carter out of confinement: To provide sport
as a fighter against men and beasts in the monthly rites of the temple.
16. Issus' diet: The flesh of the best bred of the Holy Therns and
the red Barsoomians. . . and "other dainties."
17. Reason for Carter's sudden recall before Issus: Phaidor had told
her of his good looks and prowess as a fighter against the First Born.
18. Issus' appearance: a very old, repulsive, emaciated, bald, wrinkled,
almost toothless black woman.
19. Xodar's penalty for being bested by Carter: demotion to a slave
of the slaves. . . and Carter's personal slave.
20. Phaidor's plea: she wishes to go with Carter and share his imprisonment
for the year of life remaining to them.
X: THE PRISON ISLE OF SHADOR ~ 10 Q
1. Xodar's treatment from the other First Born: They revile and curse
him and hold him in disgrace.
2. Carter's reaction to the cowardly treatment of Xodar: He knocks
the huge black warrior Thurid unconscious.
3. Carter's order to the onlookers: Take the unconscious and bound
Thurid before Issus to show that the Prince of Helium is a greater warrior
than the best of the First Born.
4. What Carter found when they return to the Isle of Shador: A small
partitioned stone prison with walls rising to 30 feet containing high barred
windows and no roof
5. The only other prisoner: A light-skinned red Martian boy with strangely
familiar features sleeping on a stone bench.
6. Reason for Carter's and Xodar's skirmish: Carter speaks blasphemous
words against the divine Issus.
7. How the young red Martian came to be captured: His flyer went down
in the ice field while he was looking for the Lost Sea of Korus.
8. Effect that Carter's anti-Issus rant eventually had on Xodar: He
comes to realize that she is a fraud, a mere mortal and the head of a false
9. Escape plan: Carter will scale the wall at night and they will escape
to the surface in a stolen flier.
10. Reason for there being no darkness during the First Born sleep
period: The subterranean dome is lit by phosphorescent rocks - sunlight
cannot reach to these depths.
The Hillman Log Notes & Study Guide Series
ERB's Mars Trilogy ~ 1350 QA-Notes
Tarzan the Ape
Man: Film Log Notes
WEB REFS IN ERBzine
Gods of Mars ~ eText Edition
Gods of Mars ~ ERB C.H.A.S.E.R Encyclopedia
Chronology Charts for
The Gods of Mars
A Princess of Mars
by Edgar Rice Burroughs ~ eText Edition
A Princess of Mars
by Edgar Rice Burroughs ~ ERB C.H.A.S.E.R. Encyclopedia
A Princess of Mars
~ Illustrated Adaptation of ERB's Novel by James Killian Spratt
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