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On March 11, 1818, the infamous novel, Frankenstein was published.  Written by twenty-one year old, Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, the story is considered the first science fiction novel.  In the story, a scientist reanimates a creature made from dismembered corpses.  Although the creature is gentle, it is enormous and hideous  looking.  When the scientist rejects his creature, the creature wanders around looking for companionship and becomes increasingly brutal as it seeks a mate.

Boris Karloff as the Frankenstein Monster

Boris Karloff as the Frankenstein Monster

It was a rainy afternoon in 1816 when Mary Shelley created this story.

Mary Shelley

Mary Shelley

She was staying with her husband the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and their friend, Lord Byron.

Portrait of Percy Bysshe Shelley by Alfred Clint (1819)

Portrait of Percy Bysshe Shelley by Alfred Clint (1819)

Lord Byron

Lord Byron

Byron proposed an activity for this rainy day.  They were to each write a Gothic story.  In the end, only Mary completed hers.  This story, Frankenstein went on to become the basis for the western horror story and the subject for numerous movies.  Although Mary Shelley was a respected writer for many years, only Frankenstein and her journals are still widely read.

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