An early founder of science fiction that explored land, sea, and sky.
February 8, 1828 – March 24, 1905
French author Jules Verne was one of the early founders of science fiction. Novels such as Journey to the Center of the Earth, From the Earth to the Moon, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, and Around the World in Eighty Days, are bona fide classics. Verne's sense of adventure and attention to scientific detail has heavily influenced science fiction for more than 150 years.
Born in the port city of Nantes, France, Verne’s first declaration of independence was an unsuccessful attempt to switch places with a ship's cabin boy. The sea subsequently appeared in many of his best works. As a young man, Verne studied in Paris where he was influenced by such writers as Victor Hugo and Alexander Dumas. After discovering the work of Edgar Allen Poe, Verne published his first science fiction tale, A Voyage in a Balloon, in 1851.
Verne went on to create Five Weeks in a Balloon, which kicked off a long series of what he called “Extraordinary Journeys,” mixing quasi-scientific theory with adventure and the romance of travel. These included such popular classics as Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864), From the Earth to the Moon (1865), 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1870), its sequel The Mysterious Island (1874), and perhaps his best-known work, Around the World in Eighty Days (1874). Verne’s works have been adapted to film for more than 100 years, beginning with George Méliès’ A Trip to the Moon in 1902, one of the first science fiction films.