Drawing of a Vril-1 type flying saucer.

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Coined by Edward Bulwer-Lytton in the 1871 science fiction novel The Coming Race.


Vril (uncountable)

  1. (science fiction, mysticism) A controllable form of energy.
    • 2003, John Michael Greer, The New Encyclopedia of the Occult, Llewellyn Publications, page 506:
      It devoted its time to the study of vril, and taught that the secret of vril could be divined by contemplating the structure of an apple sliced in half.
    • 2007 (originally 1871), Edward Bulwer Lytton, Vril: The Power of the Coming Race, NuVision Publications, page 26:
      These subterranean philosophers assert that by one operation of vril, which Faraday would perhaps call 'atmospheric magnetism,' they can influence the variations of temperature- in plain words, the weather;
    • 2010, Robert Blumetti, Vril: The Life Force of the Gods, iUniverse, page 7:
      I have written a second book, Vrilology, which explores the historic background of the Life Force, which we refer to as Vril, and another simple book explaining just what Vril is and how it can help people improve their lives, filling them with happiness, joy and prosperity.
  2. (ufology) A kind of flying saucer supposedly built by the Nazis.
    • 2003, Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke, Black Sun: Aryan Cults, Esoteric Nazism, and the Politics of Identity, NYU Press, page 295:
      This technology led to the amazing German flying saucers of the Haunebu and Vril classes built under SS auspices.
    • 2010, George Romero, The Rescue, Lotus Vision Publishing Company, page 165:
      However, some weeks after Ger-many surrendered, both Haunebu and Vril craft were spotted in the skies over occupied Germany.
    • 2012, Jack Follett, Special Report 2011: Hitler's Secret UFO Weapons, BoD – Books on Demand, page 38:
      Operation Highjump has turned out to be a hot topic for UFO conspiracy theorists over recent years, who claim it was a secret US military campaign to defeat and destroy supposed secret Nazi facilities in Antarctica and seize the German Vril flying discs, and the Thule mercury propelled spacecraft.

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