Biography of Mary Shelley. By Regan, Cece , and Marinn. Mary Shelley’s Parents. Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin were her parents. They were both authors. Mary Wollstonecraft unsuccessfully attempted suicide twice.
Biography of Mary Shelley By Regan, Cece, and Marinn
Mary Shelley’s Parents • Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin were her parents. They were both authors. • Mary Wollstonecraft unsuccessfully attempted suicide twice. • Mother died after Mary’s birth and left William with two daughters, Mary and her other daughter from a previous marriage. • Mary Shelly soon became William’s favorite child. • After Mary Wollstonecraft died, William Godwin collected her papers, and began writing the story of her life. • William married again. His new wife, Mary Jane Clairmont, had two children. • Mary Shelly’s stepmother was not who she said she was, her real name was Mary Jane Vial, and she was a spinster. • Mary’s stepmother took away her privacy and her privileges to see her father. • Mary’s stepmother favored her own children and Mary felt alone and unhappy • Mary Shelly found comfort in reading and writing. Overall, Mary Shelly’s life was not all that great growing up. Her mother passed away soon after Mary Shelly was born, and her stepmother hated her.
Percy and Mary Shelley Mary and Percy met when she was fourteen They fell in love when they met again, two years later Percy was already married and his wife was expecting a second child. In 1814, they eloped and traveled across Switzerland, Germany, and Italy. While they were traveling, Percy’s father cut him off, Mary’s half sister, Franny, committed suicide, and Percy’s wife, Harriet, drowned herself. Percy and Mary married in London to try to gain custody of Percy’s children, but custody was denied. The three children they had so far died in infancy, and Mary fell into a depression. Her depression was lifted by their fourth and only surviving child, Percy Florence. Percy and Mary’s marriage suffered as their children died, and Percy began to have affairs with other women. Percy drowned sailing to their friend’s house in 1822. Mary Shelley never remarried.
How Mary Got the Idea for Frankenstein • In 1815, Mary Shelley had a dream that her first baby girl, one who died three days after her birth, came back to life. She recorded the incident in her journal for further reference, thinking it inspiration for a story... dead things coming to life! • On a rainy evening in June 1816, the household gathered to read a collection of German ghost stories by fire light. • Lord Bryon, Percy’s friend whom they were visiting suggested that they each write their own horror story; everyone agreed. • Lord Bryon, Percy, and Claire Clairmont, read their stories the next night, but Mary hadn’t come up with an idea yet. • A few nights later, Byron and Percy were talking about a scientist who successfully made a piece of a piece of a vermicello (a type of food) move voluntarily. Mary overheard the conversation. It was then that she came up with the idea for Frankenstein. The next night, Mary began writing... • While she was writing the book, Mary lost another child and was pregnant twice. Her child born in 1816 died in 1818, the year after Frankenstein was published. During this time, her half-sister, Fanny Imlay-Godwin, and Percy’s wife, Harriet Shelley, both committed suicide.
Motivation for Frankenstein • At the time, Mary's first baby had been born prematurely and had died. This gave her many anxieties about motherhood, and she was frustrated about her inability to give life. This led her to want to write a book about a scientist who gives life using unnatural methods, (no women needed.) • She wanted to write a fabulous horror story that would scare her friends Percy Shelley, Clair Clairmont, and George Gordon, A.K.A. Lord Byron.
Other Facts about Mary Shelley’s Life • She was born on August 30, 1797, in London. • Both of her parents were influential writers. • She had a half sister, a stepsister, and a stepbrother • The only way she learned was by reading; her stepmother denied her a formal education. • She was pregnant five times. • Her child that survived to adulthood was named Percy Florence. He was born in 1819, he died in 1889, when he was seventy years old. • Three of her children died in infancy and childhood. • She had one miscarriage and almost bled to death; Percy saved her. • After her husband died, she tried to write his biography but never finished. • She died of a brain tumor. • She died in London on February 1, 1851.