Mary Shelley

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In existographies, Mary Shelley (158-104 BE) (1797-1851 ACM) (IQ:175|#314) (EPD:M11D) (GFG:6) (CR:56) (LH:3) (TL:59) was an English novelist and philosopher, noted for []


Quotes | By

The following are quotes by Shelley:

“You cannot contest the inestimable benefit which I shall confer on all mankind, to the last generation, by discovering a passage near the pole to those countries, to reach which at present so many months are requisite; or by ascertaining the secret of the magnet. Nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose — a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:Letter 1; character: Robert Walton; to Mrs. Saville, sister) [1]
“There is something at work in my soul which I do not understand. I am practically industrious – painstaking, a workman to execute with perseverance and labor – but besides this there is a love for the marvelous, a belief in the marvelous, intertwined in all my projects, which hurries me out of the common pathways of men, even to the wild sea and unvisited regions I am about to explore.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:Letter 2; character: Robert Walton; to Mrs. Saville, sister) [2]
“It was the secrets of heaven and earth that I desired to learn; and whether it was the outward substance of things or the inner spirit of nature and the mysterious soul of man that occupied me, still my inquiries were directed to the metaphysical, or in its highest sense, the physical secrets of the world.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:2; character: Victor Frankenstein)
“Natural philosophy is the genius that has regulated my fate; I desire, therefore, in this narration, to state those facts which led to my predilection for that science. When I was thirteen years of age we all went on a party of pleasure to the baths near Thonon; the inclemency of the weather obliged us to remain a day confined to the inn. In this house I chanced to find a volume of the works of Cornelius Agrippa. I opened it with apathy; the theory which he attempts to demonstrate and the wonderful facts which he relates soon changed this feeling into enthusiasm. A new light seemed to dawn upon my mind, and bounding with joy.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:2; character: Victor Frankenstein)
“I felt as if my soul were grappling with a palpable enemy; one by one the various keys were touched which formed the mechanism of my being; chord after chord was sounded, and soon my mind was filled with one thought, one conception, one purpose. So much has been done, exclaimed the soul of Frankenstein – more, far more, will I achieve; treading in the steps already marked, I will pioneer a new way, explore unknown powers, and unfold to the world the deepest mysteries.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:3; character: Victor Frankenstein) [2]
“These were men [Cornelius Agrippa and Paracelsus] to whose indefatigable zeal modern philosophers were indebted for most of the foundations of their knowledge. They had left to us, as an easier task, to give new names and arrange in connected classifications the facts which they in a great degree had been the instruments of bringing to light. The labors of men of genius, however erroneously directed, scarcely ever fail in ultimately turning to the solid advantage of mankind.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:3; character: Mr. Waldman, chemistry professor)
“A human being in perfection ought always to preserve a calm and peaceful mind and never to allow passion or a transitory desire to disturb his tranquility. I do not think that the pursuit of knowledge is an exception to this rule. If the study to which you apply yourself has a tendency to weaken your affections and to destroy your taste for those simple pleasures in which no alloy can possibly mix, then that study is certainly unlawful, that is to say, not befitting the human mind. If this rule were always observed; if no man allowed any pursuit whatsoever to interfere with the tranquility of his domestic affections, Greece had not been enslaved, Caesar would have spared his country, America would have been discovered more gradually, and the empires of Mexico and Peru had not been destroyed.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:4; character: Victor Frankenstein) (GR:91L) [3]
“The book from which Felix instructed Safie was Volney’s Ruins of Empires. I should not have understood the purport of this book had not Felix, in reading it, given very minute explanations. He had chosen this work, he said, because the declamatory style was framed in imitation of the Eastern authors. Through this work I obtained a cursory knowledge of history and a view of the several empires at present existing in the world; it gave me an insight into the manners, governments, and religions of the different nations of the earth. I heard of the slothful Asiatics, of the stupendous genius and mental activity of the Grecians, of the wars and wonderful virtue of the early Romans—of their subsequent degenerating—of the decline of that mighty empire, of chivalry, Christianity, and kings. I heard of the discovery of the American hemisphere and wept with Safie over the hapless fate of its original inhabitants.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:13; character: Monster)
“Other lessons were impressed upon me even more deeply. I heard of the difference of sexes, and the birth and growth of children, how the father doted on the smiles of the infant, and the lively sallies of the older child, how all the life and cares of the mother were wrapped up in the precious charge, how the mind of youth expanded and gained knowledge, of brother, sister, and all the various relationships which bind one human being to another in mutual bonds.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§13, character: Monster)
“One night during my accustomed visit to the neighboring wood where I collected my own food and brought home firing for my protectors, I found on the ground a leathern portmanteau containing several articles of dress and some books. I eagerly seized the prize and returned with it to my hovel. Fortunately the books were written in the language, the elements of which I had acquired at the cottage; they consisted of Paradise Lost [Milton, 1667], a volume of Plutarch’s Lives [Plutarch, 90AD], and the Sorrows of Werther [Goethe, 1774]. The possession of these treasures gave me extreme delight; I now continually studied and exercised my mind upon these histories, whilst my friends were employed in their ordinary occupations.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§:15; character: Monster)
“If I have no ties and no affections, hatred and vice must be my portion; the love of another will destroy the cause of my crimes, and I shall become a thing of whose existence everyone will be ignorant. My vices are the children of a forced solitude that I abhor, and my virtues will necessarily arise when I live in communion with an equal. I shall feel the affections of a sensitive being and become linked to the chain of existence and events from which I am now excluded.”
— Mary Shelley (1818), Frankenstein (§17, character: Monster)


  1. Shelley, Mary. (1818). Frankenstein: the Modern Prometheus (txt). Publisher.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Frankenstein (novel) – Wikipedia.
  3. Frankenstein – GoodReads.

External links

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