The Star Diaries

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The Star Diaries
First edition
Author Stanisław Lem
Original title Polish: Dzienniki gwiazdowe
Translator English: Michael Kandel
Illustrator Stanisław Lem
Cover artist Marian Stachurski
Country Poland
Language Polish, English, German, Russian
Genre Science fiction
Publisher Iskry (1957)
Publication date
1957, 1971
Published in English
Media type Print (Paperback)

Dzienniki gwiazdowe is a 1957 collection of short stories by Polish writer Stanisław Lem, expanded in 1971 around the character of space traveller Ijon Tichy. The collection was published in English in two volumes, The Star Diaries (published New York, 1976) and Memoirs of a Space Traveller (published London, 1982).


The Star Diaries[edit]

Translated by Michael Kandel.

  • Introduction and Introduction to the Expanded Edition, in which Professor Tarantoga presents the latest information on the documentation of Ijon Tichy's exploits.
  • "The Seventh Voyage", in which a spaceship defect forces Tichy through a series of time vortices, creating a multitude of temporal copies of himself.
  • "The Eighth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy represents Earth to petition for its admission to the United Planets.
  • "The Eleventh Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy travels in disguise to the planet Circia to attempt to bring an end to hostilities coming from its robot population.
  • "The Twelfth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy employs Prof. Tarantoga's new invention of time acceleration on the planet of Microcephalics.
  • "The Thirteenth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy sets out to meet Master Oh. Instead, he finds two planets (Pinta and Panta) ruled according to the Master's principles. On Pinta, people are trying to become fish using a technique called evolution by persuasion. On Panta, all inhabitants are identical clones and exchange their jobs daily.
  • "The Fourteenth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy goes hunting for Squamp (Polish: kurdel) - an animal whose area is several hectares and is being puzzled by mysterious objects, called scrupts (Polish: sepulki).
  • "The Eighteenth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy helps create the cause of our universe from a single electron.
  • "The Twentieth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy is forced by his future self to lead a programme to ameliorate Earth's and mankind's history.
  • "The Twenty-first Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy visits Dykhtonia - a civilisation which achieved total corporeal and mental plasticity after a thousand-year rule by automorphists, the local equivalent of transhumanists.
  • "The Twenty-second Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy learns of the troubles of evangelising extraterrestrial civilisations.
  • "The Twenty-third Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy visits a tiny planet, whose inhabitants save living space by frequently storing themselves as 'atom dust'.
  • "The Twenty-fourth Voyage", in which Ijon Tichy visits a civilisation which has assigned all power to a machine to establish planetary harmony. The machine changed them all into shiny discs to be arranged in pleasant patterns across their planet.
  • "The Twenty-fifth Voyage"
  • "The Twenty-eighth Voyage"

Memoirs of a space traveler: further reminiscences of Ijon Tichy[edit]

Translated by Joel Stern and Maria Swiecicka-Ziemianek

  • The eighteenth voyage
  • The twenty-fourth voyage
  • Further reminiscences of Ijon Tichy (Parts I-V)
  • Doctor Diagoras
  • Let us save the universe (An Open Letter from Ijon Tichy)

Never translated[edit]

  • "The Twenty-sixth and Last Voyage", a cold war satire.
  • "Ijon Tichy's Last Voyage", only published in the Polish edition of "Playboy".


German-language adaptations of several voyages taken by Ijon Tichy exist. In 2001 and 2002, two independent short films were made, running about 15 minutes each, directed by Dennis Jacobsen, Randa Chahoud, and Oliver Jahn (Jahn also played the main character Ijon Tichy), with Nora Tschirner starring as the female hologram. In 2006, the same team produced a miniseries called Ijon Tichy: Raumpilot for German TV, with 6 episodes of 15 minutes each again, which premiered March 2007 on ZDF. Both short films are available as legal downloads from the official site of production company Bildwerke Berlin. The series is commercially available on DVD.

External links[edit]