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WikiProject Novels / Sci-fi (Rated C-class, Mid-importance)
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The literary influence might be better at a Martian Tales, with this article more focussed on description of Barsoom proper. Stan 08:42, 18 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Another Barsoom-inspired work (or series of works) is Michael Moorcock's 'A Warrior of Mars'. --Trithemius 10:02, Nov 22, 2004 (UTC)

Shouldn't there be a mention of Ulysses Paxton here? He's the OTHER earthman to visit Barsoom. - Kevingarcia 04:45, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

Barsoom in Roman mythology[edit]

This new section needs a reference, or it will have to be deleted. Rick Norwood 18:50, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Ownership edits[edit]

See Talk:Bran Mak Morn#Ownership edits. 19:52, 28 January 2007 (UTC)


The article mentions that the first five novels have had their copyright expired. I am wondering if anyone has access to the illustrations and/or cover art of these books? We have one picture, which is great, but I think the article would look better with more. -- Sam Barsoom (talk) 18:59, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

You can find illustrations to the first novel (and possibly others) at Project Gutenberg. They are not of the highest quality, however. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:14, 10 July 2008 (UTC)


The article suggests that the apt has four limbs, but in my 1985 copy of Warlord of Mars, on page 79, we are told the apt has 6 limbs. This discrepancy should be addressed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:26, 27 December 2007 (UTC)

At the end of Thuvia, Maid of Mars there is a glossary, which describes the apt:

A huge, white-furred creature with six limbs, four of which, short and heavy, carry it over the snow and ice; the other two, which grow forward from its shoulders on either side of its long, powerful neck, terminate in white, hairless hands with which it seizes and holds its prey.

So it has six limbs but could be said to have four feet. This might be the cause of the confusion. (talk) 03:05, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Barsoom Article[edit]

Have done a fairly major revision and expansion of the article, trying to reference as much as possible. I have pretty run out of sources for the time being, so if anyone has any more for the unreferenced stuff it would help - particularly some of the details about the world like the fauna section which is completely unsourced at the moment (anyone with a copy of The Reader's Guide to Barsoom and Amtor, A guide to Barsoom or such could help a lot here, doubt I am going to find a copy of either or anything like it in a hurry). Some of the refs are still a bit of a mess, one source in particularly I will return and unravel when the pain of figuring it all out goes away, as it references 5-6 pages when the info is usually on one or two of them. Character focus, Form and Motifs is missing quite a few references too, although I think most of this stuff is pretty true to the books... hope it is:) Mesmacat (talk) 10:25, 22 February 2009 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with File:Gulliver of Mars.jpg[edit]

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Correlation between martian geographical feaures and barsoom[edit]

"Some of Barsoom's other major physical features do correspond to albedo features of Mars known at the time, flipped upside-down in reflection of the images of the planet as seen through telescopes. For instance, Burroughs' snow-covered Artolian Hills can be roughly equated to the bright feature Hellas (actually a huge impact crater), and the Great Toonolian Marshes to the dark feature represented by the Valles Marineris."

Took out this paragraph which seemed like speculation to me, but can of course be returned to the article is someone provides a context as where these ideas come from or a reference. Mesmacat (talk) 08:09, 15 March 2009 (UTC)

Word origin[edit]

The origin of the word Barsoom cannot logically be words [he made up] from the languages spoken by the peoples in his novels, because if he made them up, he could have chosen any word. Isn't Barsoom just pig latin for Mars?-- (talk) 16:14, 24 January 2010 (UTC)


The section on measurement gives the sofad as "11.68+ inches". This appears to be based on a fan-club's working out of details; dividing a modern figure for the Martian equator by 360, 100, 200 then 10 does indeed arrive at about this. However, the actual values given in Thuvia, Maid of Mars, part way through Chapter VI, are off from this – and not consistent with one another:

On Barsoom the AD is the basis of linear measurement. It is the equivalent of an Earthly foot, measuring about 11.694 Earth inches.

Note that this is the ad, not the sofad.

A haad, or Barsoomian mile, contains about 2,339 Earth feet. A karad is one degree. A sofad about 1.17 Earth inches.

Note that 11.694×200 = 2338.8, so the given number of feet in the haad would be the consistent number of inches in 200 ad. The glossary at the end of the same work also gives the "Od" as "Martian foot", clearly sorted under O in the alphabetic ordering.

I am consequently inclined to suppose Burroughs messed up; this is, at least, worth mention in the section. Are there later books of the series that corrected the inconsistencies in Thuvia ? (talk) 03:20, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Also note that the glossary at the end of Thuvia mentions tal, xat and xode as Martian second, minute and hour, respectively. It doesn't say what ratios there are among these or between xode and the Martian day, but it seems reasonable to take Burroughs's wording to imply ratios of 60, 60 and 24 as on Earth, but based on the slightly longer Martian day. (talk) 03:49, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Burroughs gave the first set of figures in Thuvia: Maid of Mars. Later on, in A Fighting Man of Mars, he used more recent data regarding the size of the planet to recalculate the derived measurements. Even so, some of the results are confusing. I recall that John F. Roy, in his Guide to Barsoom tried to solve the problems by coming up with an intermediate unit of measure.WHPratt (talk) 16:21, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

Origin of the name Barsoom[edit]

"Even this leaves us one short, there are three moons, one for Earth, two for Mars, and four planets, Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars, which makes Mars seven, not eight. Perhaps, the Sun is also counted, this would make it eight."

Yes, it does assume the sun is a body in the inner solar system."Mesmacat (talk) 20:01, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Though I've been reading the books for nearly 50 years now, I never made that connection. Yes, "bar" means eight (The hormad Tor-dur-bar was "four million eight," or something like that), but maybe it's a coincidence. Mars would be the 8th largest body in the known (in 1911) solar system, if the Sun is counted, but we'd assume that its name pre-dates the world's astronomy. Burroughs named Mercury, Venus, Earth and Jupiter, respectively Rasoom, Cosoom, Jasoom and Sasoom, for what that's worth. WHPratt (talk) 17:40, 22 November 2011 (UTC)
Barsoomian planetary names known: Rasoom = Mercury, Cosoom = Venus, Jasoom = Earth, Barsoom = Mars, Sasoom = Jupiter.
Barsoomian number names known: one = ay, four = tor, seven = ov, eight = bar, ten = tee, 100 = tan, 1,000 = dar, 10,000 = mak, 1,000,000 = dur.
Ergo, Barsoom might well mean "Eighth World."
Solar System objects ranked by planetary mass: 1-Sun, 2-Jupiter, 3-Saturn, 4-Neptune, 5-Uranus, 6-Earth, 7-Venus, 8-Mars, 9-Mercury (or the Galilean Satellites), etc.
Distance from the Sun: 1-Sun, 2-Mercury, 3-Venus, 4 & 5-Earth and Moon, 6-7-8 Deimos-Phobos-Mars.
The only trouble here is that the Barsoomian satellites are named Thuria (Phobos) and Cluros (Deimos). One of them ought to be Ovsoom under the distance scheme. WHPratt (talk) 02:43, 24 November 2011 (UTC)
(1) Is distance from the Sun the criterion?
When Earth is at perihelion, it’s as close to the Sun as it is going to get. When a New Moon occurs at or near Earth perihelion, the Moon is undeniably closer to the Sun than the Earth can ever be. So, you number the Moon (presumably "Torsoom") as #4 and Earth as #5. Therefore, "Jasoom" means "Fifth World." (I guess the Moon could be “Bang-zoom” in honor of Ralph Kramden who was always threatening to send people there.)  ;) By similar arguments, Phobos can get closer to the Sun (under ideal conditions) than Mars, and Deimos closer still, so that suggests: #6 Deimos, #7 Phobos, #8 Mars, Q.E.D. (#9 would therefore be the outermost known satellite of Jupiter, unless they also count the major asteroids.) I suspect that all of this could have been worked out (assuming that Martian Copernicus had supplanted Martian Kepler) earlier than 1886 or whenever Carter first reached Barsoom and learned the nomenclature.
Maybe the later Martians didn’t hold to tradition so much as we do: they were willing to rename things, even their world, based upon later knowledge, once astronomy had been developed. Their world may have had another name until the discovery of Mercury (which would be even harder to see from Mars than it is from Earth), which bumped them from slot seven to slot eight. And they’d be ready to change the name again if another inner planet were detected tomorrow. The names of Jupiter and the outer planets would have to change every time an additional satellite of Jupiter were detected! This seems unwieldy and unlikely.
(2) Could planetary mass be the criterion?
When the ancient Earthmen named the Sun, Mercury, Venus, the Moon, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and so on, they had no idea as to the relative mass of each world, so no ordering would be possible. The same should hold for the ancient Martians. I’m willing to bet that Martian cave men tagged their planet with the same name they give to "ground" or "soil," i.e., something that would translate to "earth"!
(I realize that this could be considered a useless argument, but we are trying to guess why Burroughs' name for Mars suggests "Eighth World.") WHPratt (talk) 15:18, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Burroughs' influence - On scientists[edit]

Plaque on Pioneer Probe.

The image File:Pioneer plaque.svg included in this section of the article does not have any adequate or apparent explanation as to why it apppears. Specifically, there is no text with which it correlates or that demonstrates why it needs to be used to illustrate the themes of this page. The only providence seems to be that Carl Sagan is mentioned to be a fan, and the fact that Mr. Sagan co-conceived the imagery of this plaque has no relation to Barsoomian fiction. This is a suggestion that it be removed as it does not compare to the degree of relevancy on this page that every other image has. meta4 08:14, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Plaque image has been removed as no watchlist feedback was received during a 48 hour period. meta4 17:24, 6 April 2011 (UTC)
"The series has inspired a number of well known science fiction writers in the 20th century, and also key scientists involved in both space exploration and the search for extraterrestrial life." From the introduction. "Burroughs' Barsoom series was extremely popular with American readers and many scientists who grew up reading the novels, and helped inspire public support for the US space program." - from the section. Mesmacat (talk) 23:26, 7 April 2012 (UTC)

Arthur Clarke & Project Barsoom[edit]

Has anybody taken a look at article on HAL 9000? There's reference to Project Barsoom from A.C Clarkes novel 2001 A Space Odyssey :)Noseball (talk) 23:54, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

Re; Authorship [of John Carter and the Giant of Mars][edit]

It's quite obvious -- and has been noted for decades -- that John Carter and the Giant of Mars, published in Amazing Stories in 1941, was adapted from the 1940 Whitman "Better Little Book" entitled John Carter of Mars. John Coleman Burroughs illustrated the story, and the format called for 50% of the book to be full page pictures depicting the facing text. JCB says that he collaborated with his famous father on the text. The Whitman edition was aimed at children, and so had to be adapted towards an adult readership for the sale to Amazing. That would explain any remaining "juvenile" quality without further disparaging JCB's writing. The facts are related in Richard Lupoff's introduction to the Canaveral Press 1964 edition of John Carter of Mars, which contained the controversial story. WHPratt (talk) 04:08, 2 December 2011 (UTC)


Seems to me this could be split into "Barsoom series" and "Barsoom", the latter being the article on the fictional world, the former being the article on the book series by ERB. lots of work, but with the film coming out, Barsoom will likely now be highly notable.(mercurywoodrose) (talk) 04:44, 2 December 2011 (UTC)

POV and Essay Tags[edit]

The article has been tagged with the above, but without further explanation on the talk page. This kind of issue, when it arises is not always self-evident, particularly to those who have done extensive work on the article. It would be useful if editors with an interest and detailed knowledge of this subject could identify some specific examples or sections that demonstrate non-encylopedic style and suggest what might done to improve them, while maintaining anchors to specific published references. Also, a neutrality tag not infrequently accompanies some kind of dispute over a bias or slant or selective presentation of facts. This is an article about a series of fiction novels and seems, at least at a basic level, to be fairly uncontroversial. Can anyone identify why the the entire article requires attention to this issue? If it is an issue with a specific section or claim, the tag would be more helpful if added to that section, not the entire article. Mesmacat (talk) 15:35, 23 April 2012 (UTC)

I decided to be bold and actually removed the NPOV tag, since it appears to have been added almost in passing (with a "jokey" edit summary, no less), without any comment in the Talk section. Normal procedure is to initiate a discussion about the bias issues that exist when adding such a tag. As Mesmacat points out, given that this is about a series of science fiction novels, there is nothing self-evident about the tag. If WPjcm feels differently, he/she can always return to re-add the tag and explain exactly what the concern is with the article.
As for the essay tag, I'm guessing it has something to do with the fancruft-like detail such as is in the Technology section. Grandpallama (talk) 18:48, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

Comic Books[edit]

Would it be possible to create a comic book page(s) specifically for the Dynamite comics? Tng88 (talk) 03:07, 18 July 2012 (UTC)