H. G. Wells
The first English
• Born in 1866 in Bromley, County of Kent,
• His family was lower middle class
– Dad bought a small china shop that never
made much money. He sold cricket bats,
gloves, balls, and played professionally to
make ends meet.
– Mom went to work as a maid when Dad broke
his leg and wasn’t able to work.
H. G. Wells
• Wells attended school until the financial hardship forced
him to work to help support the family.
• His mother wanted him to be a merchant to the upper
• Wells worked unsuccessfully at a number of jobs –
draper’s assistant, teacher’s assistant.
• 1883 he won a scholarship to the Normal School of
Science in London – later known as the Imperial College
• While there he made good marks in biology and physics,
and was a member of their Debating Society.
• Worked with TH Huxley, famous biologist.
• He failed at geology and lost his scholarship in the spring
• Moved in with his Aunt and Uncle and began writing.
– The Time Machine (1895)
– The Island of Dr. Moreau (1896)
– The Invisible Man (1897)
– The War of the Worlds (1898)
– The Men in the Moon (1901)
• Later works were more social commentary than science fiction.
• He became a widely respected and well known supporter of
socialism, and met with political figures and world leaders a number
• Invented the first recreational war game, “Little Wars” in 1913, and is
considered the father of miniature war gaming.
• Eventually, he lost his faith in humanity, and his later works reflect
his belief that human society was in decline.
• Died in 1946 of liver cancer.
Panorama of Horsell Common
The sand pits on Horsell Common