Study Guide

The Time Machine Chapter 11

By H.G. Wells

Chapter 11

  • Now, if we had just gone through an adventure like that, we'd probably be ready to go back home – if only to get some more matches. But the Time Traveller decides to go even farther forward in time.
  • He's traveling fast and the days are a blur, but then the days start to become more distinct because the earth is slowing down. The sun is also becoming giant and red, which astronomers call...a red giant.
  • The Time Traveller stops on a beach. The air is thinner, the sea moves slowly, and the only life he sees at first is some green lichen.
  • But then he see some sort of butterfly creature and some sort of crab.
  • And then he notices that there's another crab creature right behind him. They're all around him – and they're coming for him.
  • He no longer relies on matches, but instead jumps farther into the future.
  • He jumps several times – a hundred years here, a thousand years there – and sees the world slowly ending.
  • In one last image, he sees an almost lifeless world, totally silent:
  • "Silent? It would be hard to convey the stillness of it. All the sounds of man, the bleating of sheep, the cries of birds, the hum of insects, the stir that makes the background of our lives – all that was over" (11.11).
  • There is one thing that looks like a black rock, but it seems to be moving toward him.
  • Finally, he takes our advice and goes back home.

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