Teleportation is the theoretical transfer of matter and/or energy from one point to another without traversing the physical space between them. It is a common subject in science fiction and fantasy literature, film, video games, and television. In some situations, teleporting is presented as time traveling across space.
The use of matter transmitters in science fiction originated at least as early as the 19th century. An early example of scientific teleportation (as opposed to magical or spiritual teleportation) is found in the 1897 novel To Venus in Five Seconds by Fred T. Jane. Jane's protagonist is transported from a strange-machinery-containing gazebo on Earth to planet Venus.
A common fictional device for teleportation is a "wormhole".
List of fiction containing teleportation
Teleportation illusions in live performance
Teleportation illusions have featured in live performances throughout history, often under the fiction of miracles, psychic phenomenon, or magic. The cups and balls trick has been performed since 3 BC and can involve balls vanishing, reappearing, teleporting and transposing (objects in two locations interchanging places). A common trick of close-up magic is the apparent teleportation of a small object, such as a marked playing card, which can involve sleight-of-hand, misdirection, and pickpocketing. Magic shows were popular entertainments at fairs in the 18th century and moved into permanent theatres in the mid-19th century. Theatres provided greater control of the environment and viewing angles for more elaborate illusions, and teleportation tricks grew in scale and ambition. To increase audience excitement, the teleportation illusion could be conducted under the theme of a predicament escape. Magic shows achieved widespread success during the Golden Age of Magic in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
- William Shakespeare invoked a concept resembling teleportation in The Tempest (1610–1611).
- Edward Page Mitchell's 1877 story The Man Without a Body details the efforts of a scientist who discovers a method to disassemble a cat's atoms, transmit them over a telegraph wire, and then reassemble them. When he tries this on himself, the telegraph's battery dies after only his head has been transmitted.
- In Alfred Bester's 1956 novel The Stars My Destination, psionic displacement/teleportation has become commonplace. This story is the origin of the term jaunt in the sense of personal teleportation (spelled "jaunte" in the book, from the surname, "Jaunte", of the first person to do so).
- In the 1970s series The Tomorrow People and its Nickelodean remake, a group of teenagers have the ability of psychic teleportation.
- The Transformers introduced a character named Skywarp who was capable of teleporting from place to place. Transformers also utilize a device called a "Space Bridge" to travel, usually from Cybertron to a planet in another solar system. Some Transformers like the Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen iteration of Jetfire carry onboard Space Bridges.
- In the Kidsongs 1991 video: "Very Silly Songs", the Kidsongs Kids and their silly adult friends, Willy and Jilly, say the magic words "One and a two and a bop bam boom" to teleport themselves from one place of Silly-Dillyville to another.
- The 1976 film Logan's Run features a teleportation network called "the circuit", which is used to bring people together for casual sex.
- The Dan Dare adventures in the Eagle used a "telesender", originally invented by the Treens. A running joke was that Dan Dare's assistant Digby always arrived upside down. Its first appearance was in Voyage to Venus, published in 1950.
- The Marvel comic books feature many mutants and other characters with teleportation powers, such as Azazel, Nightcrawler, Magik, Locus, Lila Cheney, Amanda Sefton, Madelyne Pryor, Blink, The Wink, Paragon, Silver Samurai, and Eden Fesi. The character Spot can open holes he can teleport himself or even parts of himself through.
- Teleportation is one of the most central and pivotal themes in the Half-Life universe.