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Mary Shelley And Frankenstein

 

In 1816, the volcano Mount Tambora blew off its top, leading to what was known around the world as the "year without summer", as ash clouded the atmosphere and caused widespread crops throughout Asia and Europe. Failure caused fog and frost. This dark and dreary landscape, full of death and turmoil, was the backdrop for many writers who created great works of gothic horror.

The notable poet Lord Byron invited several of his young, artistic friends to a native manor in Switzerland, but met with the same miserable weather, so to amuse himself, he created a friendly ghost story contest. Initially, 18-year-old Mary Shelley was terrified and could not come to terms with the story for several days, but as a thunderstorm and lightning kept her awake, she suddenly saw "a terrifying apparition of a man stretched out and then, Working of a mighty engine, showing signs of life.


Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

Shelley crafted a short story that, if not polished, eventually became one of the greatest horror novels of all time. It took her over a year to turn her story into a full-fledged novel, and during that time, she was the victim of several tragedies, including the suicide of her sister and the deaths of both of her newborn children. As a young woman, she often wished to restore life to the dead, dreaming that her first child, who died after only 11 days, "resurrected, that it was only cold, and We rubbed it before the fire, and it lived."

the novel, which he called Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus, published anonymously in 1818 by the small publishing house Lackington, Hughes, Harding, Mawr and Jones. The book was a success, and soon, playwrights began to adapt the story and increase its presence in the popular culture of the day. A re-edited edition was reprinted in 1831, this time credited to Shelley, and has been sold continuously for the past 200 years.


Modern Frankenstein

Of course, Frankenstein's monster has taken on a life of its own outside the realm of literature, as the classic 1931 film Frankenstein brings us into the bolt-necked, dark-haired guise of a monster we all know and love. Huh. Due to the nature of the panchromatic film used at the time, some blues and greens would not read correctly and would instead appear as a stark white, so makeup artist Jack Pierce painted Frankenstein actor Boris Karloff in a light green. which made him appear pale as one. Zombies on the screen. However, the film's promoters only saw Karloff for promotional posters, which is why the green skin has become part of the monster's iconic image. Frankenstein and his monster have since graced the screen in over 50 movies and television shows and have become a staple Halloween costume available at any costume store in the US and beyond.

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