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What the earliest instance of an average human being magically summoned to another world, while being ignorant about the actual summons?


Basically, it's Summon Everyman Hero trope, but restricted to the summoning being the result of an actual summoning spell, and not technology, and unaware that they are being summoned.

The basic description for that trope is:

An average person from our world is brought into another for a wacky adventure.

So I'm asking about

An average person from our world is brought, by magic spell, into another for a wacky adventure.


If the dates for the earliest instance change if depending on if the spell was intended as a summoning spell, and/or if the summoned person was the intended summon, then list those instances too, please.

And so, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, is not a valid answer as the hero was not summoned by a spell, but instead:

Hank Morgan, a resident of Hartford, Connecticut, suffers a blow to the head and inexplicably awakens to find himself in sixth century Britain.


Something like Hiraga Saito from Zero no Tsukaima, or Parson A. Gotti from Erfworld, would fit.

The first touched a magic portal, without knowing it was a magic portal and it whisked him off to a fantasy world.

The second was just suddenly plucked out of his universe while making a half-joking comment about wanting to travel to another world.


Peter Pan's transfer of Wendy into Neverland would not count, as it's physical, and the only magical component is the fairy dust, so I wouldn't call it a summon, but a magically-assisted, mainly voluntary, universal transfer.


A magic spell is defined as a planned process by actors that are known to the readers by the end of the story, that is called 'magic' in-universe, and should be instantaneous, or close to it.

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    A browse through the page you linked to took me about two minutes, and came up with A Connecticut Yankee in the Court of King Arthur, published 1889. That's going to be hard to beat. – DJClayworth Nov 5 '15 at 6:11
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    @DJClayworth - The problem with that one, is that it's not a summoning. He hits his head and is warped by Alien Space Bats. – Malady Nov 5 '15 at 12:29
  • Probably not the earliest, but: Frodo Baggins (1937). Kicked and dragged out of the Shire by the portal called Gandalf's Foot – DVK-on-Ahch-To Nov 5 '15 at 13:58
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    alice in wonderland. though it may not fit your definition of summoning. but its got 20 years on Connecticut Yankee in the court of king arthur – Himarm Nov 5 '15 at 22:02
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    "Planned process by known actors" is much clearer than anything in your question. Still, what do you mean by 'known'? Known to who? The person being summoned? The reader? The author? God? – DCShannon May 20 '16 at 16:08
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Prince Caspian (1951)

The four Pevensie children (Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy) are sitting at a railway station when they're magically transported into a forest near their old castle of Cair Paravel. Much later in the book, they discover that they were magically summoned into Narnia by Prince Caspian blowing a magical horn with which he was meant to summon help in his hour of greatest need.

  • This fits. ... Now to see if there's anything earlier... – Malady Nov 12 '15 at 1:34
  • arguably the entire series fits. because Asland summons the kids every time. Id add all the books imo. They were meant to come through in lion witch and the wardrobe. – Himarm Nov 12 '15 at 1:34
  • @Himarm - Oh, didn't know that. ... Learning it was a Christian allegory kinda blew me off from the series. I don't like author tracts? – Malady Nov 12 '15 at 1:35
  • @Malandy you can read the entire series and not worry about that, he wrote it in a way that its a fantasy first, with some its own in world beliefs, only the 1st and last books are overt. (the entire series was proof read by Tolkien dont forget, as lewis did for tolkien's books – Himarm Nov 12 '15 at 1:37
  • @Himarm - Oh! I didn't know that! Thanks for the info! – Malady Nov 12 '15 at 1:39
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Alice and Wonderland was written in 1865, is about a young girl who stumbles into a rabbit hole and finds herself in another world.

The sequel Through the Looking Glass came out in 1871, Alice while looking into her mirror, steps through her mirror and finds herself back in Underland.

Both books contain Alice getting magically teleported into another world, "for a wacky adventure."

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Through the Looking Glass

  • I don't think this counts, as I'm pretty sure the OP is looking for a deliberate summoning spell. Anyway it's all a dream :-) – Rand al'Thor Nov 12 '15 at 1:30
  • @randal'thor its not a dream! also in the second book she actually comes for a reason. though its not my fault op added "specifically by a spell" after i wrote it. – Himarm Nov 12 '15 at 1:34
  • Yeah... Even before my edits, this isn't a 'summon', it's a... unintended transfer, like tripping on a rock. No intent from the ground to hit you, nor the other way around... I think that analogy works? – Malady Nov 12 '15 at 1:51
  • @Malandy you can argue that alice shows up when she is needed both times, hence the magic only worked because it wanted her to enter, aka summoned :P – Himarm Nov 12 '15 at 1:59
  • @Himarm - Add something supporting that, and I'll upvote? ... But, I can't think of how to support... Hmm... – Malady Nov 12 '15 at 2:01

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