Remembrance of Earth's Past

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Remembrance of Earth's Past
Remembrance of Earth's Past trilogy book covers.png
English edition book covers

AuthorCixin Liu
Original title地球往事
TranslatorKen Liu (books 1 and 3)
Joel Martinsen (book 2)
LanguageMandarin Chinese
GenreHard science fiction
PublisherChongqing Publishing Group (Chinese edition)
Tor Books (English edition)
PublishedMay 2008 – November 2010 (original trilogy)
2011 (fanfiction spin-off)
Published in EnglishNovember 11, 2014 – September 19, 2016 (original trilogy)
July 16, 2019 (spin-off)
Media type
No. of books4 (including one spin-off)
Remembrance of Earth's Past
Simplified Chinese地球往事
Traditional Chinese地球往事
Literal meaningEarth's Past
Alternative Chinese name
Simplified Chinese三体
Traditional Chinese三體
Literal meaningThree-Bodies

Remembrance of Earth's Past (Chinese: 地球往事; pinyin: Dìqiú Wǎngshì; literally: 'Earth's Past') is a science fiction trilogy by the Chinese writer Liu Cixin, but Chinese readers generally refer to the series by the title of its first novel, The Three Body Problem (Chinese: 三体; pinyin: Sān Tǐ; literally: 'Three-Body').[2]


Original trilogy[edit]

The books in the Remembrance of Earth's Past trilogy are:[3]

  • The Three-Body Problem (三体), 2006; English translation by Ken Liu published by Tor Books on November 11, 2014.[4] Also known in Chinese as "三体I"
  • The Dark Forest (黑暗森林), 2008; English translation by Joel Martinsen published by Tor Books on August 11, 2015.[4] Also known in Chinese as "三体II"
  • Death's End (死神永生), November 2010; English translation by Ken Liu published by Tor Books on September 20, 2016[4] (September 19 in digital stores).[5] Also known in Chinese as "三体III"

Extended series[edit]

  • The Redemption of Time (观想之宙), originally posted to an internet forum as fan fiction in 2010 by Li Jun writing as Baoshu, that was later published by Chongqing Press, the original trilogy publisher, with the permission of Cixin Liu in 2011, as Three-Body X: Aeon of Contemplation (Chinese: 三体X·观想之宙; pinyin: Sān Tǐ X · Guān Xiǎng Zhī Zhòu). It was translated by Ken Liu into English for Tor Books and published on July 16, 2019 as The Redemption of Time.[6]

Science fiction concepts[edit]

  • Sophons: 11 dimensional protons generated with Trisolaran particle accelerators. Placed into the 2nd dimension, they are embedded with circuitry to create a supercomputer, and when viewed in 3 dimensional space are typically the size of a proton though they can switch dimensions to change sizes in 3-dimensional space. They can visually record anything and thus their secondary purpose is to act as surveillance devices, beaming the information they gather back to another sophon instantaneously via quantum entanglement. Their primary purpose for their Trisolaran manufacturers is to disrupt Earth's particle accelerators, capable of straying into the paths of fired particles and scrambling the results before re-assembling. Since they can move through three-dimensional space at the speed of light, a single sophon is capable of disrupting all of Earth's particle accelerators.
  • Droplets: Trisolaran space probes covered by a strong interaction force material. Due to this material, they are stronger than any material in the solar system and thus are impervious to any physical attack. Their propulsion system is capable of moving in any direction in 3D space. Seemingly unaffected by inertia they can make sudden impossible turns, and their primary method of attack is to simply smash through objects.
  • Curvature Propulsion: Simplified in a demonstration as a piece of soap attached to a paper boat on water, with the soap reducing the water tension at its end, and the water tension disparity propelling the boat. Traveling through previous paths slows the boat down due a decreased surface tension. Curvature Propulsion is a method of light speed travel that utilizes the same concept, via reducing the speed of light it is possible to drag a ship through space at light speed, while its contrail is a reduced light-speed region of space.
  • Cryonics: Humanity by the time of the Dark Forest has developed cryogenic technology, capable of preserving a human life, unaging, for hundreds of years bar certain genetic disorders. Initially, it is viewed as a sign of inequality before it is fully developed, viewed as a way for the rich to simply skip through the centuries to eras of more advanced technology, peace, and human development. With the advent of the Trisolarian invasion, however, it becomes a near-worthless technology in terms of demand, as people prefer to die naturally in a world still free from Trisolaris rather than skip ahead to doomsday. Because of this, only researchers and certain high-value staff make use of cryogenics to skip through time.

Cinematic adaptations[edit]

The Three-Body Problem (Chinese: 三体) is a postponed Chinese science fiction 3D film[7] in-progress, adapted from The Three-Body Problem series by Liu Cixin, directed by Fanfan Zhang, and starring Feng Shaofeng and Zhang Jingchu.[8][9][10]


  1. ^ "The Three-Body Problem (Remembrance of Earth's Past Book 1". Retrieved September 5, 2019.
  2. ^ Liu, Cixin (7 May 2014). "The Worst of All Possible Universes and the Best of All Possible Earths: Three Body and Chinese Science Fiction". Retrieved 8 May 2014.
  3. ^ "Three-Body Introduction". Archived from the original on 2015-03-03.
  4. ^ a b c Liu, Ken. "Three Body". Retrieved September 5, 2019.
  5. ^ Liu, Cixin. "Death's End". Google Play. Macmillan. Retrieved September 5, 2019.
  6. ^ Andrew Liptak (19 October 2018). "How a fan fiction for Cixin Liu's Three-Body Problem became an official novel". The Verge.
  7. ^ "三体 的海报". (in Chinese). Retrieved June 10, 2015.
  8. ^ "三体 (2017)". (in Chinese). Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  9. ^ "三体 (2017)". (in Chinese). Inc. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  10. ^ CaixinOnline (June 23, 2016). "Premiere of Film based on Acclaimed Sci-fi Novel 'The Three-Body Problem' Pushed Back until 2017". Retrieved June 24, 2015.