"The Rull"
Short Fiction 1948 11,800 words
  • The printing history of this story is inordinately complex. Mark McSherry has discovered that this story was edited when it appeared in collections. This revised text leaves out many details present in the original magazine version. It isn't clear yet when this new version first appeared, but Robert Hager was able to confirm that it began appearing at least as early as 1955, in the anthology Adventures on Other Planets. This version was also included in the 1976 collection The Best of A.E. van Vogt, as well as in the 1980 anthology Bug-Eyed Monsters edited by Barry N. Malzberg.

Part of the
Rull & Ezwal Series
1 —     "The First Rull" 1978
2 —     "Cooperate or Else" 1942
3 —     "The Second Solution" 1942
4 —     "The Rull" 1948

The three Rull & Ezral stories from the 1940s were incorporated into the fix-up novel The War Against the Rull (1959), where they were accompanied by the previously-unrelated Yevd stories.

"The First Rull" is a prequel story that was first published in the collection Pendulum (1978), and later included as part of the Tor edition of The War Against the Rull.



original version




adapted for fix-up novel


novel excerpt
Included In
The Best of A.E. van Vogt    [American] 1976
Transfinite: The Essential A.E. van Vogt 2003
The War Against the Rull 1959
Astounding Science Fiction magazine
1948 May Street & Smith
digest Vol 41, No 3 164 pages $0.25

cover art by

First appearance

Text version: 1948

Alejandro's covers for Astounding could be depended on to convey the same theme over and over again. Here we see variation #228 of "Unclothed Man As Atomic God."

4 illustrations by
Paul Orban

Cover image: Walwyn
Illustration images: Walwyn
Data: Walwyn
Travelers of Space anthology
edited by Martin H. Greenberg
1951 Gnome Press
hardback code: ? 400 pages $3.95

cover art by
Edd Cartier

Alternate Cover

Text version: unknown

According to the ISFDB, this book had an alternate dust jacket featuring art by Ric Binkley:

Cover & other images: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Adventures on Other Planets anthology
edited by Donald A. Wollheim 1955, etc.

1955 version of "The Rull"

Science Fiction: The Great Years: Volume II anthology
edited by Frederik Pohl & Carol Pohl
1976 February Ace
paperback 75431 276 pages $1.50

cover art by
Don Ivan Punchatz

Text version: unknown

Punchatz's imaginative rendering of a Rull would later reappear on his cover for the 1978 Ace edition of War Against the Rull.

(Cover scan by Walwyn.)

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Bug-Eyed Monsters anthology
edited by Bill Pronzini & Barry N. Malzberg
1980 March Harvest / HBJ
trade 0-15-614789-0 273 pages $4.95

cover art by
Ruby Mazur

Text version: 1955

Cover image: ISFDB Data: ISFDB
Yesterday's Tomorrows anthology
edited by Frederik Pohl
1982 October Berkley
trade 0-425-05648-1 431 pages $9.95

cover artist: unknown

Text version: unknown

  Data: ISFDB
The Good Old Stuff anthology
edited by Gardner Dozois
1998 December St. Martin's Griffin
trade 0-312-19275-4 434 pages $17.95

cover art by
Ed Emshwiller

Text version: 1998

This anthology was included in the omnibus The Good Stuff (1999).

Cover image: ISFDB Data: Walwyn
The Good Stuff omnibus
edited by Gardner Dozois
1999 January SF Book Club
hardback 0-7394-0044-4 982 pages $15.98

cover art by
Vincent Di Fate


This omnibus contains:

Text version: 1998

Cover & other images: ISFDB Data: ISFDB