Fringe: The First People’s Book – LA PRIMERA GENTE

Fringe episode 3.11 “Reciprocity” delivered a little update on the First People mythology.

A while back we posted our original First People article. Head past the jump for what we’ve learned since then.

Updated with screencaps of William Bell’s German copy of the First People’s Book.

The First People’s Book

In Fringe episode 3.11 “Reciprocity” we discovered the following additional pieces of information on the First People‘s book:

  • Massive Dynamic’s lead scientist, Brandon Fayette tracked down three copies of the First People’s book.
  • One was found in a museum, the other two in private collections.
  • The owners didn’t want to part with them, but couldn’t resist Massive Dynamic’s bottomless pit of money..
  • The books are in three different languages, one of them being Spanish (above) – LA PRIMERA GENTE (The First People).

  • One of the other copies appears, from the cover, to be in Hebrew (confirmation needed). We do not get a good look at the third book.
  • They are almost literally word for word identical, forgiving for translations.
  • The books were written by three different authors.
  • They were published within two years of each other.
  • Brandon speculates that the First People were a great civilisation who were wiped out by one of Earth’s “six major extinction events”.
  • A few years ago (say, 2008) William Bell started a similar search for the First People’s books.


  • Edward Markham (“6955kHz”) told Olivia and Peter that the copy he gave them was one of the last. How many more are out there? How many did William Bell get his hands on? Does Walternate have any? What secrets do the books hold that the Fringe team is yet to see?
  • Seamus Wiles is the author of the First People’s book that the Fringe team received from Edward Markham. As we know, his name is an anagram for Sam Weiss, who helped both Nina and Olivia in the past. Did Sam write all of the First People’s books under different aliases, or did a group of historians/First People/FP ancestors (or whathaveyou) band together to write the books in different languages, thus keeping the history of the FP alive in all corners of the world?

Updates from 3.12 Concentrate and Ask Again.

William Bell’s German copy of the First People’s Book, discovered in his secret stash by Nina:

screencaps via

To be continued..

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  1. Inter-dimensional Dave says

    So more information of the first people comes to light. And through different sources spanning cultures and religions. A deliberate act? To what end? To plant the seed of doubt and prepare for the bitter harvest of battle?

    Beware of what you read. The first victim of war is the truth.

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  2. says

    “A deliberate act? To what end?”

    Indeed. Perhaps the most compelling question is why? Why did they do it?

    There’s precedent on the show with Bell and Walternate’s respects ZFT books – both compiled for various reasons. It might be interesting to compare the motivations behind those books with any Seamus/FP speculation.

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  3. The Arsassin says

    Not sure if this is a nitpick or something worth noticing, but “The First People” in Spanish would be “La Gente Primera,” not the way it was spelled on the book itself.

    Reciprocal, maybe?

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    • Pablo Campis says

      No, that’s not true, “The First People” in spanish is “La Primera Gente” as it was stated in the show. To give you another example, ·”The blue car” is “El carro azul” and not “El azul carro”. In spanish the adjectives come after the subject, not the other way, as in english…

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  4. matt says


    Olivia and Peter speak German and Walter/Robert/Peter are reportedly German…

    ZFT is German & Jones knew German state secrets?… ageless old German (Nazi/Joseph dude man guy) knowing how to be ageless… Robert Bisho(ff)p (?) was German/from Germany/lived there with Walter at one time/worked with the Nazis…

    WHAT DID THE NAZI’S LEARN? WHAT DOES GERMANY KNOW!? their scientific advancement during WWII is the foundation for much of modern science and it advanced much of our medical/scientific knowledge very quickly to allow us to get to the point were at today, plus, they build all the best things these days (anyone want a baller mercedes? lol)

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    • Martin says

      Our modern science isnt based on nazi WW2 stuff, it is based on 500 years of accumulated science. However if you ask, i’d say it is “based” on the work of many european physicists from the late 19th century till the late 40’s. Einstein, Planck, Schrodinger, De Brouglie, Brillouin, Dirac, Noether, etc. Many germans indeed, also a lot of french and british. Few actual nazis, except Von Braun, whos the father of the modern rocket but thats about it. Hes no Einstein..

      And yes, the hebrew book reads ha anashim harishonim. I’d translate it as the first individuals, or the first people, but hebrew is not my mother tongue. Also, the book is backwards, hebrew is read from left to right, we start from the end of the book.. so to speak.

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  5. Ari Rottenberg says

    Not sure if anybody mentioned this yet, but the Hebrew copy in your screen cap (not perfectly clear, but somewhat usable) seems to read “Ha-Anashim Harishonim” which would read as “The First Men” rather than “The First People”. A closer translation would have read “Ha-Am Harishonim”, with “Am” as “People”. Anashim seems more gender specific.

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  6. cassen says

    The german title ‘Die Ersten Menschen’ means literally ‘The first men’. The spanish translation of the title is wrong. It should be ‘Los primeros hombres’ (sticking to the german) or ‘Las primeras personas’, if you follow the english original.

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  7. Naor says

    I would like to comment on the Hebrew version of the books.

    Unlike what Ari wrote I think the translation was correct, the “First People” in Hebrew means “Ha’anashim Harishonim”, if you would refer to it gender wise, it will be “Hagvarim Harishonim” (=”The first Men”).

    People =\= Am (in Hebrew), “Am” means – “Nation”, so “The first Nation” will be translated to Hebrew as “Ha-am Harishonim”.

    The really big mistake with the book is with the cover, in Hebrew we read books from right to left, unlike English from Left to right, so the cover with the title should be printed on right cover (as if it was the end of a book in English).

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  8. Israel says

    It is confirmed that the Hebrew translation of the book is indeed “The First People”: האנשים הראשונים

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