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"the [science fiction] writer should be able to convince the reader (and himself) that the wonders he is describing really can come true...and that gets tricky when you take a good, hard look at the world around you."
- Frederik Pohl

Starship  
  A vehicle for space travel.  

This is the earliest known reference to this useful word in science fiction.

Before they quarrelled, the two scientists invented a wonderful projectile, capable of travelling through the millions of miles of ether that separated Ikon and the world, swearing a solemn vow that neither would use it except in the interests of the earthmen. But crazy, planning diabolical schemes of world rulership, Swarfsmidt travelled, aboard his starship, to Ikon, where he obtained supreme power.
From War in Space, by Raymond Quiex.
Published by Boy's Magazine in 1926
Additional resources -

Compare to spaceship from A Journey In Other Worlds (1894) by John Jacob Astor IV.

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