What Was The Tragic Life Of Mary Shelley Essay

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The Tragic Life of Mary Shelley Mary Godwin, later Mary Shelley, was born to parents Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin and William Godwin on August 30, 1797. Due to complications from the birth of Mary, her mother died on September 10, 1797, just eleven days after having her child (Mellor, xv). Mary’s father, William, was, as his daughter would become, an author; her mother was also a writer, and was, as some believe, the world’s first feminist (bbc.co.uk). Though her mother had died, Mary still had her father, and her half-sister Fanny Imlay, daughter of Mary Wollstonecraft and Gilbert Imlay, and now a stepmother and two step-siblings were to join them. In December of 1801 the Godwin family expanded when William Godwin married the widowed Mary Jane …show more content…
During their stay, Lord Byron proposed that, due to being trapped inside due to the constant rain and cold, each person staying in the house should write a ghost story; whoever had the best story would win their little “contest.” The French-Swiss border in the wintertime was “frightening, lonely, and bleak,” inspiring just the right mood for a horror novel (bl.uk). Mary began her story, which would become a lasting novel, at the age of only nineteen, with motivation from a conversation with the others about “the scientific phenomena of Galvanism,” and a nightmare she had had. In an introduction to her 1831 edition of the novel, she reveals that, in the dream, she saw “the hideous phantasm of a man stretched out, and then, on the working of some powerful engine, show signs of life, and stir with an uneasy, half vital motion;” thus, the idea for Dr. Frankenstein’s monster was born (amsaw.org). While writing Frankenstein, or, as the novel was originally named, The Modern Prometheus, Mary was pregnant, yet again, with her third child. Four short months later, on September 1, 1817, Mary gave birth to her second daughter, Clara Everina, who dies of a fever at a little over a year old when her parents attempt to relocate their family to Italy; shortly before the death of Clara Everina, however, in March of 1818, Mary’s completed novel was published when …show more content…
Percy Shelley seizes this chance, and sets asail. Ten days after the departure of her beloved husband, Percy, and Edward, Mary is informed that the two have been found dead in the Bay of Spezia near Livorno (Mellor, xvii) (amsaw.org). Percy Bysshe Shelley, at the time of his death, was a mere twenty-nine years old, a month shy of his thirtieth birthday, and had been married to the love of his life, Mary, a meager six years of the eternity that the two had planned on (pbs.org). Following Percy Shelley’s death, Mary returns to England with her son, Percy Florence; she is determined that she will not remarry (amsaw.org). Mary stayed by her determination that she would be with no one aside from Percy Shelley, as she declines a marriage proposal in 1825 from the well-off actor-manager John Howard Payne, and yet another in 1831 from a friend she and her husband Percy had made in Florence, Italy, Edward Trelawny (Mellor, xviii). Now that Percy Florence is grown, her pursues a wife for himself. In June of 1848 the widowed Mary Shelley was able to witness the only surviving child that she and her love, Percy had had join another in holy matrimony as Percy married Jane St. John (Mellor, xx). Though joyous things were taking place around her, Mary’s health began to deteriorate. Ever since the death of her three year old son and of her husband, the guilty conscience Mary held,

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