Tarzan the Terrible

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Tarzan the Terrible
First edition cover
dust-jacket illustration of Tarzan the Terrible
Author Edgar Rice Burroughs
Illustrator J. Allen St. John
Country United States
Language English
Series Tarzan series
Genre Adventure novel
Publisher A. C. McClurg
Publication date
1921
Media type Print (Hardback)
Pages 408 pp
ISBN NA
Preceded by Tarzan the Untamed
Followed by Tarzan and the Golden Lion

Tarzan the Terrible is a novel written by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the eighth in his series of books about the title character Tarzan. It was first published as a serial in the pulp magazine Argosy All-Story Weekly in the issues for February 12, 19, and 26 and March 5, 12, 19, and 26, 1921; the first book edition was published in June 1921 by A. C. McClurg.

Plot[edit]

Map of Pal-ul-don from the first edition

In the previous novel, during the early days of World War I, Tarzan discovered that his wife Jane was not killed in a fire set by German troops, but was in fact alive.

In this novel two months have gone by and Tarzan is continuing to search for Jane. He has tracked her to a hidden valley called Pal-ul-don, which means "Land of Men." In Pal-ul-don Tarzan finds a real Jurassic Park filled with dinosaurs, notably the savage Triceratops-like Gryfs, which unlike their prehistoric counterparts are predatory. The lost valley is also home to two different races of tailed human-looking creatures, the Ho-don (hairless and white skinned) and the Waz-don (hairy and black-skinned). Tarzan befriends Ta-den, a Ho-don warrior, and Om-at, the Waz-don chief of the tribe of Kor-ul-ja. In this new world he becomes a captive but so impresses his captors with his accomplishments and skills that they name him Tarzan-Jad-Guru (Tarzan the Terrible), which is the name of the novel.

Jane is also being held captive in Pal-ul-don, having been brought there by her German captor, who has since become dependent on her due to his own lack of jungle survival skills. She becomes a pawn in a religious power struggle that consumes much of the novel.

With the aid of his native allies, Tarzan continues to pursue his beloved to rescue her and set things to right, going through an extended series of fights and escapes to do so. In the end success seems beyond even his ability to achieve, until in the final chapter he and Jane are saved by their son Korak, who has been searching for Tarzan just as Tarzan has been searching for Jane.

Importance[edit]

Tarzan the Terrible is an important work in the Tarzan series, continuing a sequence beginning with Tarzan the Untamed and concluding in Tarzan and the Golden Lion and Tarzan and the Ant Men, in which Burroughs' vivid imagination and storytelling abilities hit their peak, and which is generally considered a highlight of the series.

Comic adaptations[edit]

The book has been adapted into comic form by Gold Key Comics in Tarzan #166-167 (July–September 1968), with a script by Gaylord DuBois and art by Russ Manning.

References[edit]

  • Bleiler, Everett (1948). The Checklist of Fantastic Literature. Chicago: Shasta Publishers. p. 68. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Tarzan the Untamed
Tarzan series
Tarzan the Terrible
Succeeded by
Tarzan and the Golden Lion