Edward Bulwer-Lytton

The Coming Race

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The Coming Race (1871) is a novel by Edward Bulwer-Lytton. It centers on a young, independent, unnamed, wealthy traveler (the narrator), who visits a friend, a mining engineer. They explore a natural chasm in a mine. The narrator reaches the bottom of the chasm safely, but the rope breaks and his friend is killed. The narrator finds his way into a subterranean world occupied by beings who seem to resemble angels. He befriends the first being he meets, who guides him around a city that is reminiscent of ancient Egyptian architecture. The explorer meets his host's wife, two sons and daughter who learn to speak English by way of a makeshift dictionary during which the narrator unconsciously teaches them the language. His guide's daughter, Zee, explain who they are and how they function. They call themselves Vril-ya, have great telepathic and other parapsychological abilities, such as being able to transmit information, get rid of pain, and put others to sleep.
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