Official Edgar Rice Burroughs Tribute Site
Since 1996 ~ Over 10,000 Webpages in Archive
Quotations by Others
"The Grandfather of American Science Fiction" - George T. McWhorter
"An unassuming American writer" - Henry Hardy Heins
"An acknowledged master of the scientific romance" - Sam Moskovitz
"Master of Adventure" - Richard Lupoff
"Above all, a storyteller" - P.J. Farmer
Edgar Rice Burroughs (l875-l950) is known as the Grandfather of American Science Fiction. He predicted the invention of radar, sonar, television, teletype, the radio compass, the automatic pilot, homing devices on bombs and torpedoes, genetic cloning, living organ transplants, antigravity propulsion and many other concepts deemed totally fantastic in his time. His soaring imagination, coupled with the sure instinct of a master storyteller, assures him a position of honor among American writers of the twentieth century.
-- George T. McWhorter -- Curator, Burroughs Memorial Collection
/ Editor: BURROUGHS BULLETIN
Edgar Rice Burroughs is beyond doubt one of the most widely-read and enjoyed authors in 20th century literature. An unassuming American writer, his tales have been translated into thirty or more languages.... Burroughs' works have become literary classics. Formal recognition of this fact came in 1962 when a study-edition of his first story, A Princess of Mars, was published for British school use, as one volume in a series comprising such native authors as Conan Doyle, Sir Walter Scott, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Shakespeare. and the publisher who ranked ERB as the only American among this distinguished company was none other that the venerable Oxford University Press. ... "He being dead yet speaketh." And we shall not soon see his like again.
-- Reverend Henry Hardy Heins
- A Golden Anniversary Bibliography of ERB - 1964
Mr. Burroughs convinced me that I could talk with the animals, even if they didn't answer back, and that late nights when I was asleep my soul slipped from my body, slung itself out the window, and frolicked across town never touching the lawns, always hanging from trees where, even later in those nights, I taught myself alphabets and soon learned French and English and danced with the apes when the moon rose. But then again, his greatest gift was teaching me to look at Mars and ask to be taken home. I went home to Mars often when I was eleven and twelve and every year since, and the astronauts with me, as far as the Moon to start, but Mars by the end of the century for sure.... We have commuted because of Mr. Burroughs. Because of him we have printed the Moon. Because of him and men like him, one day in the next five centuries, we will commute forever, we will go away...And never come back....And so live forever.
---Ray Bradbury -- May 8, 1975
When Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote "Dejah Thoris, A Princess of Mars" in 1911, he had no idea that he was opening a new era in the science fiction field. Over a period of thirty years, Burroughs wrote ten Martian tales... the story of life and death, romance and tragedy on the Red Planet is undoubtedly one of the greatest series of all time. Burroughs created a world of dead seabeds, towering mountains, polar ice caps, underground rivers...he peopled the planet with four different human races and one semi-human. He gave Mars a history, several phases of civilization and an assortment of religions. He added dauntless heros, beautiful maidens, evil villains and fearful monsters -- all the ingredients necessary for a series of thrilling adventures on any world!
--John Flint Roy -- A Guide to Barsoom - The Mars of ERB
I can remember as a child reading with breathless fascination the Mars novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs. I journeyed with John Carter, gentleman adventurer from Virginia, to "Barsoom," as Mars was known to its inhabitants. I followed herds of eight-legged beasts of burden, the thoats. I won the hand of the lovely Dejah Thoris, Princess of Helium. I befriended a four-metre-high green fighting man named Tars Tarkas. I wandered within the spired cities and domed pumping stations of Barsoom, and along the verdant banks of the Nilosyrtis and Nepenthes canals. Might it really be possible - in fact and not in fancy - to venture with John Carter to the Kingdom of Helium on the planet Mars? Could we venture out on a summer evening, our way illuminated by the two hurtling moons of Barsoom, for a journey of high scientific adventure? ... I can remember spending many an hour in my boyhood, arms resolutely outstretched in an empty field, imploring what I believed to be Mars to transport me there.
---Carl Sagan -- Cosmos
Edgar Rice Burroughs' stories about Tarzan, John Carter and David Innes were great. His characters are true classics...everything I read in comics and books made me want a life of adventure. In that respect, (they were) a motivating factor -- a strong one at that. And I can say (that such) characters helped me be honest and morally strong. They were good examples to emulate when you are growing up. The people who write science-fiction stories are dreamers. They create the ideas from which scientists begin their search. Just think what this country would be like if we did not have writers who dream of making things better.... Without the dreamers, our country could be in pretty bad shape. Science fiction is the material from which dreams begin their initial journey to reality. Without that first building block, we, as a nation, cannot advance and we would eventually stagnate. A stagnating civilization will eventually collapse in on itself. I would have never gone into space had it not been for someone in the past who one day wondered if space travel was possible -- that person dreamed the dream and I was very fortunate to be able to fulfill his dream from long ago.
-- Terry Wilcutt
- NASA Astronaut
For years he thought himself a failure . . . then he wrote a story. It sold and he wrote others and they too sold. Success no longer eluded him. His romantic fantasies were transformed into a world of vast adventure and excitement. He was imitated by many but none could equal him; none could match that special quality that set him apart. For each of those worlds he created was unique and fascinating and believable in its own right.
---Creator of Tarzan Website introduction, (www.tarzan.com)
Edgar Rice Burroughs...could pace, he was accessable, he was a brilliant inventor of languages, and he told emotionally satisfying morality plays in an action/adventure framework. He had the capacity to imagine fully-fleshed worlds by the carload. ...no one since then ...has created a greater number of wildly popular imaginative series. Yes, he was followed by many better, more subtle, more erudite writers ...most of whom built upon his foundation...but...he was the first, and he is still very readable and very popular, and what more need you ask of a pioneer?
-- Mike Resnick
-- The Burroughs Style - A Writer's Analysis
(Adapted and Excerpted from ERBFAQ)
Edgar Rice Burroughs was to become the acknowledged master of the scientific romance. In stories of this nature, colourful adventure in the classical sense is seasoned with just enough science to lend wonder and enchantment to the background and locale. ...The rousing enthusiasm that greeted his first novel, A Princess of Mars, was to usher in a golden era of escape science fiction. Burroughs completely divorced the reader from association with reality and carried him off to a never-never world of his own creating. ...He was a natural storyteller. His style never jarred. It flowed along, quickly and smoothly, weaving the reader into the spell of the story. ...Literary critics, judging ERB by absolute literary standards, have never been kind. They have pointed out that his plots are repetitious, his prose construction often hasty, with an overwhelming emphasis on action and violence and the fact that some of his novels seemed to be a pointless procession of incidents rather than a completely co-ordinated whole. Burroughs never denied the charges and with almost a note of apology frequently explained that it was his purpose to write for those who desired entertainment and escape and that he expected his works to be judged by that standard. ...In all the literature of mankind, only Sherlock Holmes is nearly as well known as Tarzan. This popularity is justified. Tarzan of the Apes is a great and fabulous adventure epic. ...it seems likely that at least Tarzan will be printed and read long after many authors "with pointed messages for our times" have been forgotten.
--Sam Moskowitz -- 1958
The novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs have acted as dream catalysts, spanning the planet with an uncountable number of mind dramas. ...We have shared the dreams he invoked. In a very real sense the spirit of that great Magician of Dreams pervades these pages. His magic took hold of (our) minds...it has reached across the decades to draw us together.... We are fellow wayfarers. Sometimes, of course, the magic fails; and so we have critics who look on in amazement at the phenomenon that is ERB. The dreams have gone unrecognized, perhaps hidden behind failing of language and character and plot -- dingy gold, cast aside for brass. The loss, of course, is theirs. All man's works are flawed, if one looks closely enough, and there is little to be gained -- much to be lost -- by judging a work on its failing rather than its successes. Magic is fragile and does not bear close scrutiny.
--Patrick H. Adkins
-- Dream Vaults of Opar -- 1984
The (Tarzan) revival has even gone so far as to get so-called serious critics to find new meaning in Tarzan, with some French intellectuals likening Tarzan to Rousseau’s concept of the “natural man.” We don’t know about that, but the stories were darned good ones that transported us to a wonderful land of courageous adventure. We still like Tarzan of the Apes, and say long may he swing from vine to vine in the jungle htat never was, except in so many of our imaginations, and the vivid imagination of Edgar Rice Burroughs.
Thursday, Nov. 16, 1972
There is no doubt in my mind that without the early influence of ERB I would never have “arrived” on the planet Mars, myself. As a boy I used to run next door to my Uncle Bion’s house, in Waukegan, and borrow all of the Burroughs’ Tarzan and Mars books and read them again and again until I could recite them from memory, to my friends, sitting under the big apple tree in my grandmother’s fron yard during the summertime. Burroughs gave me my leavening and, later, Huxley and Steinbeck and Robert Frost gave me, iwth many others, new directions of thought, scientific and social and poetic. My first great love in book-reading, was Burroughs. I lived on Mars a good many fine years with John Carter. I shall not forget those years.
I knew all (his) novels and stories as a boy and was thrilled by (his) work and loved them very much. I still respect the boy that I was, I have not turned my back on myself. The books of one’s childhood are immensely important and even though one’s taste may shift as one grows older, still the memory of great adventure and much fun lingers stronger than many other books read in later years. I shall always be in debt to (ERB) for the pleasure (he) gave me.
--Ray Bradbury ERB-dom #55, 1972
I would ask the critics of Burroughs to reassess their findings. Burroughs was a teller of tales, a weaver of dreams. In short, he created folklore and poetry, a meta-literature in the form of drama as myth. If this is true, as I believe it is, then he must be reevaluated on an entirely new plane.
-- Burne Hogarth, 1971
Throughout his many novels, Burroughs carries on a timeless tradition of weaving the fabric of fantasy and the morals and ideals of society into one whole that became a commentary on the culture in which he lived. Burroughs stands separate from Verne and Kipling because of his romantic "unreason." ... Burroughs "unreason" is rooted in his portrayal of scenes. He shows his characters as lifelike and believable, but puts them in an environment that is scientifically or realistically unlikely. Burroughs' difference and popularity stems from his readers' belief that Burroughs' worlds and characters could possibly exist, however highly unlikely that might seem.
As Burroughs wrote a novel, he always had a clear conviction of what is "right" and "wrong." He incorporated his perceptions into his novels in such a manner that the readers could have little doubt as to his belief that there was only black and white, while grey was a color not seen by true heroic characters.
--Reverend Henry Hardy Heins
- A Golden Anniversary Bibliography of ERB - 1964
The creations of Edgar Rice Burroughs continue to live on in the imagination of his readers in a way that few authors ever achieved. No matter where you go in this world, everyone knows of Tarzan. The imagination of Edgar Rice Burroughs is with us today and endures.
ERB: The Exhaustive Scholar’s and Collector’s Descriptive Bibliography
Edgar Rice Burroughs still lives
Visit our thousands of other sites at:
BILL & SUE-ON HILLMAN ECLECTIC STUDIO
ERB Text, ERB Images and Tarzan® are ©Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc.- All Rights Reserved.
All Original Work ©1996-2009 by Bill Hillman and/or Contributing Authors/Owners
No part of this web site may be reproduced without permission from the respective owners.