Frankenstein Comprehension Questions

Who is the author of Frankenstein (first and last name)? Mary Shelley NOTE: The first publication read “by anonymous” because the publisher didn’t think a book by a female writer would sell.
How did the author get the idea for the novel Frankenstein? Provide at least one source of inspiration mentioned in the book’s introduction. – German ghost stories- Listening to the men in her group talk about scientific experiments (e.g., Darwin’s Theory of Evolution)- Dreamed about the moment the creature comes to life
In the introduction of the book, what central theme (main idea) does the author say she most wanted to address? Man trying to play God
What is the book Frankenstein’s subtitle? Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus
What is the significance of the book Frankenstein’s subtitle? Victor Frankenstein is compared to the Greek Titan Prometheus who is credited with creating humans, giving them fire (after stealing it from Zeus), and being punished. Similarly, Victor Frankenstein created the creature/monster, played with fire (thinking he could create life like God), and was punished.
Who is the explorer who rescues Victor at the beginning of the novel? Robert Walton
Where does the story begin? On Robert Walton’s ship in the Arctic
Who does Walton write to? His sister, Margaret Saville, who lives in London with her husband and children.
What is Robert Walton obsessed with? Reaching and studying the North Pole
Where do Victor Frankenstein and his family live? Geneva, Switzerland
Who is Victor’s mother (not enough to say Mrs. Frankenstein)? Caroline Beaufort
How does Victor Frankenstein’s mother die? Scarlet Fever
Who is Victor Frankenstein’s close childhood friend? Henry Clerval
How many brothers does Victor Frankenstein have and what are their names? Victor has two younger brothers:- William, the youngest (murdered at age 6)- Ernest, who is six years younger than Victor and the only surviving Frankenstein
Who is Victor Frankenstein’s cousin and sister by adoption? Elizabeth Lavenza
Who is Victor Frankenstein’s father (not enough to say Mr. Frankenstein)? Alphonse Frankenstein
What field of study does Victor Frankenstein become fascinated with at around 13 or 14? Science
What event sparked Victor’s interest in science? The oak tree outside of his house was struck by lightning.
How does William die? The creature/monster strangles him in the woods outside Geneva.
Who is falsely accused, convicted, and executed for William’s murder? Justine Moritz
Where does Victor Frankenstein go to college? The University of Ingolstadt in Germany
Who is the blind old man forced to live in poverty somewhere in Germany with his two children? DeLacey
How many people does the creature/monster murder? Three (William, Elizabeth and Henry)
What are the names of the blind old man’s two children? Felix and Agatha
Who is Felix’s fiance who arrives at the cottage and cheers up the family? Safie
What does the creature/monster do to help the poor family living in the cottage? Chops wood for them to cook and stay warm
What short and conceited university professor ridicules Victor Frankenstein’s previous, self-directed studies? Krempe
What Chemistry professor supports Victor Frankenstein’s pursuit of Natural Philosophy and becomes his mentor? Waldman
How does Victor’s father die? He dies from grief after Elizabeth’s murder
Where does Victor’s family go to find relief from their grief over William’s murder and Justine’s death? Their country house in Belrive, Switzerland
When Victor first leaves for the university, what is his main objective/desire? To study how to prevent death (probably due to his sorrow over his mother’s recent death)
As Victor rises to the top of his field at the university, what becomes his new/revised obsession? To discover the secret of life and create a new and noble race
Where does Victor Frankenstein collect materials to create his creature/monster? Graveyards
Why does Victor immediately run away from the creature/monster as soon as it is brought to life? He is horrified by the creature’s hideous appearance
To whom does Victor tell his secret–that he brought a creature to life? No one
After William’s death, where does Victor see the creature/monster? In the woods outside Geneva where William was found murdered
After William is murdered, why doesn’t Victor immediately tell his family that he suspects the creature did it? Victor is afraid no one will believe him and may think he is crazy
When the creature/monster finds Victor hiking alone in the Alps, he kindly asks Victor to do what? Come to a remote cabin on the mountain and listen to his story
What does the creature first eat? Berries
What bothers the creature most in the early days of his existence? Similar to a newborn infant, his senses are overwhelmed with all the new sights (light), sounds (tries to imitate the birds), and feelings (cold and hungry).
What are the first two things the creature/monster learns about fire? Brings warmth but also hurts him–later learns it makes some foods taste better
What happens to the creature/monster when he innocently enters a village in search of food? The villagers scream and throw stones at him
Where does the creature/monster find shelter? In a hut attached to a poor family’s cottage. (He peers at them through a hole in the wood.)
How does the creature/monster learn to SPEAK? He listens to the DeLacey family interact.
How does the creature/monster learn to READ? He listens as Felix teaches Safie to read–learns about the history of the human race.
After telling Victor his story, what does the creature/monster demand that Victor do for him? Create a wife for him
How does the creature/monster learn he is ugly? Sees his reflection in a pool of water
How does the creature/monster learn about how he was created? Finds Victor’s journal in the pocket of his cloak and reads it
Why does the creature/monster decide to reveal himself to the old blind man? He is lonely and because the old man is blind, he thinks he won’t be prejudiced by his looks
What does the old man’s family do when they return and find the creature in their cottage? Safie screams and runs away, Agatha faints, and Felix beats the creature with a stick
What does the creature do when the DeLacey family flees? He burns down their cottage and vows revenge against his creator (Victor)
What injustice happens to the creature in the woods as he travels to Switzerland to find and confront Victor? He saves a girl from drowning and is shot in the shoulder by her father
What does the creature want when he first sees and stops William? He wants the boy to be his companion–thinks the boy is too young to fear his looks
Why does the creature/monster kill William? William says his father is “Mr. Frankenstein” and the creature thinks he is talking about Victor, his creator and enemy
Who is accused of murdering Henry Clerval? Victor Frankenstein
What is the verdict at Victor’s hearing/trial in Ireland? Not Guilty / Found Innocent
Where does Victor go to create a female monster? A remote island in Scotland
What does the creature/monster say to Victor when he destroys the unfinished female creature? “I will see you on your wedding night.”
What did the creature want most from humans? Love
Why does Victor travel with Henry to England and then Scotland? To speak to Natural Philosophy specialists and secretly make a female creature/monster
Where does Robert Walton find Victor Frankenstein in the beginning of the novel? Stranded on a block of ice in the Arctic
How does Victor Frankenstein get close to Robert Walton’s ship? He breaks apart his dog sled and uses the wood as oars
Who nurses Victor back to health when he falls sick with fever right after creating the monster? Henry Clerval
What do Alphonse and Elizabeth assume is the source of Victor’s unhappiness? They think he’s changed his mind about marrying Elizabeth and he may have found someone else
What happens to Victor after he sees Henry’s dead body? He falls into a long, feverish illness.
When Victor first gets sick, what does he ask Robert Walton to do for him? Find and kill the creature/monster for him.
What does Robert Walton do after Victor dies on his ship? Walton heads back home to England
Robert Walton’s voyage and letters to his sister are an example of a ________ story/narrative that sets the stage for another story. frame story/narrative (a story within a story)

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