Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft,

1797–1851, English author; daughter of William GodwinGodwin, William,
1756–1836, English author and political philosopher. A minister in his youth, he was, however, plagued by religious doubts and gave up preaching in 1783 for a literary career.
..... Click the link for more information.
 and Mary WollstonecraftWollstonecraft, Mary
, 1759–97, English author and feminist, b. London. She was an early proponent of educational equality between men and women, expressing this radical opinion in Thoughts on the Education of Daughters (1786).
..... Click the link for more information.
. In 1814 she fell in love with the poet Percy Bysshe ShelleyShelley, Percy Bysshe
, 1792–1822, English poet, b. Horsham, Sussex. He is ranked as one of the great English poets of the romantic period. A Tempestuous Life
..... Click the link for more information.
, accompanied him abroad, and after the death of his first wife in 1816 married him. Her most notable contribution to literature is her novel of terror, Frankenstein, published in 1818. It is the story of a German student who learns the secret of infusing life into inanimate matter and creates a monster that ultimately destroys him. Included among her six other novels are Valperga (1823), The Last Man (1826), and the partly autobiographical Lodore (1835). After Shelley's death in 1822, she devoted herself to caring for her aged father and educating her only surviving child, Percy Florence Shelley. In 1839–40 she edited her husband's works.


See her journal (ed. by F. L. Jones, 1947); her letters (ed. by M. Spark and D. Stamford, 1953); biographies by M. Spark (1951, repr. 1988), N. B. Gerson (1973), M. Seymour (2001), and F. Sampson (2018); C. Gordon, Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary Shelley (2015); studies by W. A. Walling (1972), E. Sunstein (1989), and R. Montillo (2013).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft


Born Aug. 30, 1797, in London; died there Feb. 1, 1851. English writer. Daughter of W. Godwin; wife of P. B. Shelley.

The hero of Shelley’s novel Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus (1818; Russian translation, 1965) creates a monster that tries to do good, but, embittered by loneliness, kills its creator. A gloomy picture of the coming downfall of mankind through epidemics and starvation is at the center of her novel The Last Man (1826). Shelley also wrote the autobiographical novel Lodore (1835) and commentaries to a posthumous edition of works by P. B. Shelley (1839).


The Letters of Mary Shelley, vols. 1–2. Norman, Okla., 1944–46.
Mary Shelley’s Journal. Norman, Okla., 1947.


Bel’skii, A. A. Angliiskii roman 1800–1810-x gg. Perm’, 1968.
Spark, M. Child of Light. Hadleigh, Essex, 1951.
Small, C. Ariel Like a Harpy. London, 1972.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Bennett, Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley: An Introduction (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998), 89; and Barbara Jane O'Sullivan, "Beatrice in Valperga: A New Cassandra," in The Other Mary Shelley: Beyond Frankenstein, 143.
Johanna Russ wrote an introduction to a new edition (published in 1975) of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Tales and Stories, Boston: Gregg Press.
Bennett has chosen 231 letters from the 1,276 in her own three-volume edition of The Letters of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Baltimore, 1980-8) for the Selected Letters.
Introduction to Frankenstein (Original 1818 Text), by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. Edited by D.
When 18-year-old Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley wrote a horror story for her companions one rainy summer day alongside Lake Geneva, none of them could have imagined what lay in store for her tale.
Bennett in her splendid edition of The Letters of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. A hitherto unpublished letter to Mrs Meredith was probably the latest in the series, and possibly the last letter that Mary Shelley wrote prior to her death on 1 February 1851.
In this serious and important study, Pamela Clemit offers, for the first time, a view of the novels of William Godwin (1756-1836), Charles Brockden Brown (1771-1810), and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (1797-1851) as a historically specific group.
ON THIS DAY 1797: Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, second wife of poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and author, in 1818, of Frankenstein, was born in London.
1797: Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, second wife of poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and author of Frankenstein in 1818, was born in London.
(14.) Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus: the 1818 Text, ed.
Joining the ranks of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley and her feminist essays, the efforts of the suffragettes and the new wave of feminists of the 1960s,is a new female revolutionary,finally making her mark in an exciting new biography.
Sweeping aside the essays of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, the efforts of the suffragettes and the new wave of feminists of the 1960s,a new female revolutionary has finally made her mark in an exciting new biography.