Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"I have been a soreheaded occupant of a file drawer labeled 'Science Fiction' and I would like out, particularly since so many serious critics regularly mistake the drawer for a urinal."
- Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Vibroblade  
  A knife-like weapon.  

A thin pencil of light flashed out and splashed on a figure crouching outside the alcove. I dived and was on him before he could get to his feet. Fast as I had been, Sister Magdalene was just as fast; she landed on his shoulders as he went down. He jerked and was still.

Zebadiah came running in, checked himself at our sides. 'John! Maggie!' came his tense whisper.

'What is it?'

'We've caught a spy, Zeb,' I answered hurriedly. 'What'll we do with him?'

Zeb flashed his light. 'You've knocked him out?'

'He won't come to,' answered Magdalene's calm voice out of the darkness. 'I slipped a vibroblade in his ribs.'

'Sheol!'

'Zeb, I had to do it. Be glad I didn't use steel and mess up the floor with blood. But what do we do now?'

From If This Goes On..., by Robert Heinlein.
Published by Astounding Science-Fiction in 1940
Additional resources -

The same weapon is mentioned - but not actually used in Methuselah's Children, written in the following year.

"Better get away from that phone, Bud." Then, in an aside to Mary, Lazarus added, "I won't touch my gun, Sis. I'll use my knife."

Vanning stopped. "Very well," he said in annoyed tones, "don't touch that vibroblade. I won't call from here..."

"It ain't a vibroblade. It's steel. Messy."

Appropriately, Lazarus Long, eldest member of the Howard Families, uses the traditional weapon rather than the new-fangled version.

These quotes are taken from the expanded versions of these stories from the collection The Past Through Tomorrow; both of these stories were expanded from their initial publication in 1940 and 1941. I haven't been able to confirm the presence of the word "vibroblade" in the original publications.

For purposes of comparison, Randall Garrett wrote this about the vibroblade in his 1962 novel Unwise Child:

A vibroblade is a nasty weapon. Originally designed as a surgeon's tool, its special steel blade moves in and out of the heavy hilt at speeds from two hundred to two thousand vibrations per second, depending on the size and the use to which it is being put. Make it eight inches long, add serrated, diamond-pointed teeth, and you have the man-killing vibroblade. Its danger is in its power; that shivering blade can cut through flesh, cartilage and bone with almost no effort.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 3 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from If This Goes On...
  More Ideas and Technology by Robert Heinlein
  Tech news articles related to If This Goes On...
  Tech news articles related to works by Robert Heinlein

Articles related to Weapon
HEL TVD Laser System To Be Built By Dynetics Lockheed Martin
ZKZM-500 LASER Assault Rifle
Drone Assassin Fails To Kill Venezuelan President
Musk's Boring Flamethrower

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

Entire Planet Modeled In New MS Flight Sim
'CIC uses [it] to keep track of every bit of spatial information that it owns...'

FlyZoo Robot Hotel By Alibaba
'... hotels that specialized in non-human service.'

Implanted Memories Provide Songs To Birds
Finches can't tell the difference.

Robot Tuna Swims As Fast As Nature's Tuna
'With one fluid motion, it surged forward, plunged, and was gone.'

Shapeshifter Robot Is Comprised Of Cobots
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed. For an interval, the device struggled with itself...'

Google Commits To Fighting Deepfakes
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time, subtly smoothing, deleting and coloring.'

China Accused Of Harvesting Organs From Unwanted Groups
'The death penalty was his immortality, and he would vote the death penalty for any crime at all.'

Osmiridium Sounds Like Science Fiction (But It's Not!)
I can't resist science-fictional elements. Especially when they're real.

When Will We See The First Space Hotel?
'The heart of it was a vast hexagonal structure of welded metal, ten miles across...'

SpaceX Starhopper Has Flash Gordon Style
SpaceX makes retro cool spacecraft.

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.