Mary Shelley

Mary Shelley

Pseudonym: Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin Born: 30/08/1797 Died: 01/02/1851 Gender: Female Genre: Gothic Occupation: Novelist

Although her name is inextricably linked with that of her husband and great love, the Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary Shelley was a superlative author in her own right, and one of the most singular and unusual talents of her generation. Her best-known work is Frankenstein (1818), a novel that is part Gothic thriller, part philosophical treatise, part science fiction, and she later developed a successful career writing fiction, travel and biography. Born Mary Godwin, daughter of the feminist pioneer Mary Wollstonecraft and the radical thinker William Godwin, Shelley had a rebellious, free-spirited temperament, and after she eloped with Percy at the age of 16 became involved with the unconventional circle that surrounded Lord Byron. Following her husband’s untimely death in a boating accident, she edited and championed his works – to the extent that for many years her own achievements were sidelined.

Image source: Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley by Richard Rothwell © National Portrait Gallery, London

Featured works

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Title: Frankenstein Published: 1925 Format: Novel Period: Romantic Genre: Gothic Learn more
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