This Is How the Future Looked 122 Years Ago

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La Fin du Monde (The End of the World), is a 19th century science fiction novel about a comet colliding with the Earth, followed by several million years leading up to the gradual death of the planet. The book was written by French astronomer and author Camille Flammarion, first published in 1893, and adapted to movie in 1931.

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The following original illustrations – engravings by several famous French artists – were scanned from the Hungarian edition (1897), and show us a very special future, imagined by the people living close to the turn of the twentieth century. You may find it surprising how many predictions come true.


The city of future: huge airship preparing for landing on a roof port. Lot of buildings have large rotating domes for observing the stars, streets are illuminated by electric lights.

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Comet with devastating effects heading toward Earth.

Image for article titled This Is How the Future Looked 122 Years Ago

Airships, winged aircraft fill the sky.

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A wireless message from Mars projected in front of a large group of scientists and politicians.

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Busy scene of a rooftop airship port.

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Means of travel: ships in the air and on water

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Large round screen for home entertainment. Control board is on the wall.

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We should all commute by air as of now.

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Paris, the capital of France will became a megalopolis from Bordeaux to Narbonne. Note the several flappy winged airplanes in the smoke filled air, the huge river cruiser in the right bottom corner, the multilevel bride, and the monorail tracks.

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Romantic moment in a propeller driven, flappy winged aircraft

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Lonely airship above the ruins of the human civilisation

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DISCUSSION

By
jmg007

Thank God we took a second look at those wacky plane designs from the past.