From Latin. Actually, Terra translates as earth, as in, rock, but since we know there are other planets and solar systems, and such, we refer to our own planet by the name Terra so as not to confuse ourselves. Much the same way we refer to our local star as Sol. We, as beings living on Terra, are Terrans.

A hero/villain published by DC Comics. Terra first appeared in New Teen Titans #26 in 1982.

There are watershed moments in nearly all comic titles. The Dark Phoenix Saga. Emerald Twilight. Knight Fall. The Death of Superman. And in the Teen Titans, the greatest watershed event was probably the Judas Contract.

The centerpiece of this story arc was Terra, a hero who was not what she seemed. Terra was actually Tara Markov, the illegitimate daughter of the king of Markovia. Because of her blood relationship, to the royal family of Markovia, Tara was able to undergo the special process created by Dr. Jace which allowed the members of the royal family to possess earth-based super-powers. Tara gained her powers under less than ideal circumstances, with Dr. Jace later suggesting that Tara underwent the process without her knowledge. The result was that Tara could manipulate earth and rock in a variety of ways, from using them to support herself for transportation to creating missiles of rock and stone.

Because the king of Markovia tried to keep Tara and her mother a secret to avoid scandal, Tara grew up feeling unloved with a lot of anger and frustration in her nature. She used her new abilities and began to do mercenary work, selling her powers to the highest bidder. She began to use the name Terra as a codename during this time. She also came into contact with Deathstroke, the Terminator, another mercenary. He had a contract on the lives of the Teen Titans and partnered with Terra to fulfill the contract.

Terra became a member of the Titans and gained their confidence. Eventually, she found out their secrets, their weaknesses, and their secret identities. She and Deathstroke then used this information to capture them and turn them over to H.I.V.E. for execution. Only Dick Grayson, the original Robin, escaped and with the help of Deathstroke's son, Jericho, helped free his teammates. At this point, Terra went berserk, feeling betrayed by both Deathstroke and the Titans and brought a huge pile of rock and soil down in an attempt to kill her former teammates. In the end, she only managed to kill herself.

Years later, a girl with the exact look and powers of the original Terra appeared with a group of super-powered youth from the future. Though it was originally believed that she was another girl who had been given powers like Terra, it was later revealed that this new Terra was actually the original, though with no memory of her actual past. Her brother, Brion Markov, the hero Geoforce is the only person to know this to be true.

In the book Ada by Vladimir Nabokov, the term 'Terra' plays a significant role throughout the book signifying an alternate Earth, somewhat occupying the common religious concept of Heaven.

In the book, Terra is a seperate but similar planet which occupies an odd, non-linear groove in space and time. Of course, the whole nature of time comes into question in the book and Nabokov's beliefs.

Essentially, those who live on Earth ("Anti-Terra" or "Demonia" often in the book) go to Terra when they die. Or so is the deduction of Van, a parapsychological researcher who has become familiar with Terra through studying the insane. This belief is shared by Ada, Van's sister and lover, as well as others.

Though details are scarce, Van's beliefs as conveyed in his writing are that Terra is an Earth-like world with a geographical and political setting similar to that of Earth, but approximately fifty years behind. Terra is conveyed by Van as being less like a paradise than his scientific and religious peers would believe.

Ter"ra (?), n. [It. & L. See Terrace.]

The earth; earth.

Terra alba [L., white earth] Com., a white amorphous earthy substance consisting of burnt gypsum, aluminium silicate (kaolin), or some similar ingredient, as magnesia. It is sometimes used to adulterate certain foods, spices, candies, paints, etc. -- Terra cotta. [It., fr. terra earth + cotta, fem. of cotto cooked, L. coctus, p.p. of coquere to cook. See Cook, n.] Baked clay; a kind of hard pottery used for statues, architectural decorations, figures, vases, and the like. -- Terrae filius [L., son of the earth], formerly, one appointed to write a satirical Latin poem at the public acts in the University of Oxford; -- not unlike the prevaricator at Cambridge, England. -- Terra firma [L.], firm or solid earth, as opposed to water. -- Terra Japonica. [NL.] Same as Gambier. It was formerly supposed to be a kind of earth from Japan. -- Terra Lemnia [L., Lemnian earth], Lemnian earth. See under Lemnian. -- Terra ponderosa [L., ponderous earth] Min., barite, or heavy spar. -- Terra di Sienna. See Sienna.

 

© Webster 1913.

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