Talk:The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility

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WikiProject Novels / 19th century (Rated Start-class, Mid-importance)
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Believe in Jesus[edit]

I removed all of the "BELIEVE IN JESUS!" stuff that was added to the article, though I did note that some may believe the story was an allegory for biblical salvation

cool —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:38, August 26, 2007 (UTC)


hey, sorry to nag, but can someone look into finding other sources - - seems like a nutjob conspiracy theorist to me, not exactly a credible source, even if what they said is true in this case. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:20, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Michael Davie's Titanic brings it up nd I think he gives much the same list of similarities. Very reliable book, highly recommended - unlike Walter Lord he doesn't lionize the crew but resists the urge to look for scapegoats such as Stan Lord, the captain of the Californian, the ship that *may' have had the lanterns of the Titanic on the horizon as it sank but failed to notice and come to its rescue - just what did happen, and their positions, are still blurred.
I know people have sometimes used Futility as proof of psychic phenomena (involuntary clairvoyance, prescience of a ship disaster of this kind). The similarities seem really creepy. /Strausszek (talk) 18:26, 29 September 2009 (UTC)


The ship was not considered unsinkable. it was afterwords that it was called that. i'm gonna change it in 4-5 days if nobody objects Tca achintya (talk) 14:15, 31 October 2009 (UTC)

It was the journal of shipbuilding and maritime engineering that called the Titanic "practically unsinkable". It is different to be called unsinkable. (talk) 15:32, 7 March 2010 (UTC)

Misleading statements re fatalities[edit]

The article contains two statements about the fatalities on the Titan, which although consistent, are misleading:

  • ... more than half of her 2500 passengers drowning ...
  • ... only 13 of those aboard the Titan survived.

Dormantat (talk) 19:01, 16 January 2010 (UTC)


  • Wikipedia: "Futility, or the Wreck of the Titan"
  • "On-line version of the text": "'The Wreck of The Titan' or 'Futility'"
  • "On-line version of the text": "The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility" and in the "read online" variant "The Wreck of the Titan <linebreaks> Or, Futility"
  • Wikisource: "The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility"

So what's the novella's title? - (talk) 04:28, 9 September 2013 (UTC)

All of the online scans I've seen of the book are written as "The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility" so I would consider that official. The line break version on the cover page is probably there because "THE WRECK OF THE TITAN" is a title (all caps, larger font) and it wouldn't seem proper to end it with a colon. On the next page after the contents page it does show it as "THE WRECK OF THE TITAN:" with a line break then "Or FUTILITY" (all caps except "Or", no comma, and the same size font). --User:bsimser — Preceding undated comment added 15:53, 4 August 2014 (UTC)


It's been pointed out to me that the comparisons of the Titan to the Titanic as listed in the article were original research. This, however, isn't the case. Several reliable sources have made them and it's nothing new. Below are a couple. We should probably incorporate them into the article and look for more.

MartinezMD (talk) 20:13, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

Unsinkable Urban Legend[edit]

The article states:

Contrary to Urban Legend, Titanic was actually qualified as "unsinkable" before she sank.

I thought the general public's view was that the Titanic was claimed to be unsinkable. How would this be contrary to urban legend?


The article states that the Titan displaced 75,000 tons which was altered from the original 45,000 tons in the 1898 edition. The Project Gutenberg eBook looks like it's from a later version but says it displaced 70,000 tons. Another PDF I found that seems to be from Project Gutenberg also says 70,000 tons (they might be the same version). I cannot find any copies that say 75,000 tons nor can I find an original copy of the book showing the 45,000 ton statement. Bil Simser (talk) 13:52, 26 June 2014 (UTC)


Is the first edition really verified somehow? Library of Congress? Did anyone see the original book? --KpaIsh (talk) 15:35, 31 July 2014 (UTC)

I cannot find an online version of the 1898 edition, only the 1912 version which has small changes to the weight and horsepower from the 1898 edition. The online copies are the 1912 edition but from various university and collections (Harvard, Cornell, etc.) --User:bsimser

If so, is there similarity in 1898 and 1912 editions that someone has seen? In Google Books there is the book called Futilyt (1898) [1] but does it tell about the ship Titan? --KpaIsh (talk) 16:46, 31 July 2014 (UTC)

The original novella is called "Futility" from what I can find on the 1898 edition and it was renamed for the 1912 edition to "The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility". --User:bsimser

1898 edition[edit]

While I cannot find a copy of the 1898 edition online to validate some of the "facts" on similarities to the Titanic, on all 1912 editions the front page lists the copyright as "Copyright, 1898, by M. F. Mansfield". This refers to Milburg Francisco Mansfield (aka M. F. Mansfield, aka Francis Miltoun) who married Blanche McManus in 1898 (same year the novella was published). It might help in tracking down the edition but also other references to Francis should include this publication. Bil Simser (talk) 17:56, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

Here is a link to the 1912 version with 1898 reference. MartinezMD (talk) 19:52, 4 August 2014 (UTC)
Thanks but we already have (several) links to the 1912 version. The issue of validity is that nobody seems to have the 1898 edition online. This would be the version with the original values before the author changed them after the Titanic disaster. User:bsimer — Preceding unsigned comment added by Bsimser (talkcontribs) 20:14, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

Gotcha. Apparently the University of Virginia has a copy in their special collections department.MartinezMD (talk) 20:45, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

==Upgrade to Mid== This work had been rated as Low-importance, however given its latter day notability with relation to its apparent preduction of the Titanic disaster, it should be at least Mid-importance so I have upgraded it accordingly. 23skidoo 17:46, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Last edited at 17:46, 26 March 2007 (UTC). Substituted at 15:43, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

What does this mean?[edit]

The article says: The Titan also sank, more than half of her 2500 passengers drowned. However, only 13 ultimately survived the disaster, 705 of the Titanic's crew and passengers survived. What does this mean? Joseph A. Spadaro (talk) 01:00, 27 June 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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