"Enchanted Village"
Short Fiction 1950 5,768 words


A man crash-lands on Mars and stumbles upon a strange deserted village that inexplicably manages to keep him alive.

Alternate Titles

"The Sands of Mars"     (1958)

"The Four Walls"     (1952)

  • Sometimes printed as "The Enchanted Village" (with the article "The").

  • This story was very loosely adapted as a comic strip entitled "The Four Walls" for the February 1952 issue of Journey Into Unknown Worlds (Issue #9). The artist was Joe Sinnott, but the writer is unknown. (This comic version should not be confused with the later one from 1975.) [Thanks to Lledó for this information.]

  • This story was adapted as another comic strip by Don and Maggie Thompson and illustrated by Dick Giordano, appearing in the July 1975 issue of Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction. This issue also featured a short interview with van Vogt, conducted by Alan Brennert. (This comic version should not be confused with the earlier one from 1952, which was entitled "The Four Walls.") [Thanks to Tim Stroup for this information.]

  • In 1979, a convention chapbook appeared containing an illustrated version of this story.

  • In 1982 the Italian author Renato Pestriniero wrote a novel entitled Il Villaggio Incantato, based on this short story. A revised co-authored version was later published in French and German, entitled The People of the Wide Sands.



original short story


comic book adaptation


second comic book adaptation


expanded into novel
Included In
The Blal 1976
Destination: Universe! 1952
The Earth Killers and Other Stories 2010
Futures Past 1999
Monsters 1965
The People of the Wide Sands 1982
Science Fiction Monsters 1967
Transfinite: The Essential A.E. van Vogt 2003
Other Worlds magazine
1950 July Clark Publishing
digest Vol 2, No 1 164 pages $0.35

cover art by
Malcolm Smith

First appearance

1 illustration by
Jon Arfstrom

Cover image: Walwyn
Illustration image: Walwyn
Data: Walwyn
Possible Worlds of Science Fiction anthology
edited by Groff Conklin 1951, etc.

Various abridged editions of this anthology appeared over the years, including one under the title Selections from Possible Worlds of Science Fiction (1968). Van Vogt's story was included in the abridged version.

"The Four Walls" (alternate title)
Journey Into Unknown Worlds magazine
1952 February Atlas
comic Issue #9 pagecount: ? $0.10

cover art by
Carl Burgos &
Chris Rule

Comics Sample 1

Comics Sample 2

Comic book adaptation (different from the later 1975 comic).

Script writer unknown, art by Joe Sinnott.

A very loose adaptation of van Vogt's story.

Cover & other images: Grand Comics Database, Lledó Data: Grand Comics Database
New Worlds magazine
1952 March Nova Publications
digest Vol 5, No 14 96 pages 2/-

cover art by
Bob Clothier

2 illustrations by
Gerard Quinn

Cover image: ISFDB
Illustration images: Lledó
"The Sands of Mars" (alternate title)
The Sands of Mars and Other Stories anthology
editor unknown
1958 Sydney: Jubilee
paperback 213 114 pages A 2/-

cover artist: unknown

Third in the publisher's Satellite Series of anthologies. These anthologies apparently reprinted items from a variety of sources, mostly from an American magazine called Orbit SF (which I'd never heard of before).

Cover image: Axelsson Data: ISFDB
Asleep in Armageddon anthology
edited by Michael Sissons
1962 June Panther
paperback 1379 189 pages 2/6

cover artist: unknown

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Modern Masterpieces of Science Fiction anthology
edited by Sam Moskowitz 1965, etc.

Split into multiple differently-titled volumes by Macfadden/Manor from 1966-68. The volume with van Vogt's story was entitled Microcosmic God (1968).

Microcosmic God and Other Stories anthology
edited by Sam Moskowitz 1968, etc.

This anthology is part of a multi-volume reprint of the anthology from 1965.

Selections from Possible Worlds of Science Fiction anthology
edited by Groff Conklin
1968 November Berkley Medallion
paperback X1633 188 pages $0.60

cover artist: unknown

This anthology is a retitled abridgement of the original anthology from 1951. Van Vogt's story was included.

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Science Fiction anthology
edited by Sylvia Z. Brodkin & Elizabeth J. Pearson 1973, etc.
Hot & Cold Running Cities anthology
edited by Georgess McHargue
1974 Holt, Rinehart, & Winston
hardback 0-03-012416-6 245 pages $6.50

cover art by
Johannes Regn

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Anthropology Through Science Fiction anthology
edited by Carol Mason & Martin H. Greenberg & Patricia Warrick 1974, etc.
Modern Science Fiction anthology
edited by Norman Spinrad 1974, etc.
Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction magazine
1975 July publisher unknown
comic Issue #4 84 pages $1.00

cover art by
Frank Brunner

Comic book adaptation (different from the earlier 1952 comic, which was entitled "The Four Walls").

Script by Don and Maggie Thompson, art by Dick Giordano.

Cover image: Tim Stroup Data: Grand Comics Database
Shape Shifters anthology
edited by Jane Yolen
1978 Seabury
hardback 0-8164-3212-0 181 pages price: ?

cover artist: unknown

  Data: ISFDB
1979 October Misfit Press
chapbook code: ? 25 pages price: ?

cover art by
Joan Hanke Woods

550 numbered copies.

Printed especially for two SF conventions, CONCLAVE and LOSCON.

(no illustration images available)

? illustration by
Joan Hanke Woods

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
The Great SF Stories 12: 1950 anthology
edited by Isaac Asimov & Martin H. Greenberg 1984, etc.
The Golden Years of Science Fiction: Sixth Series omnibus
edited by Isaac Asimov & Martin H. Greenberg
1988 Bonanza / Crown
hardback 0-517-65754-6 624 pages $8.95

cover artist: unknown

An omnibus containing two anthologies in Asimov & Greenberg's Great SF Stories series, Volume 11 (1949) and Volume 12 (1950).

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Iniquities magazine
1991 Fall Iniquities Publications
quarto Issue #3 88 pages $4.95

cover art by
Alan M. Clark

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Nebula Awards #31 anthology
edited by Pamela Sargent 1997, etc.
The Science Fiction Century anthology
edited by David G. Hartwell 1997, etc.

Split into two volumes in 2006; Volume 1 contains van Vogt's story.