Frankenstein Study Questions

Why did Mary Shelley write Frankenstein? She wrote it as a response to a challenge by Lord Byron to think of a ghost story.
What discussions influenced the development of her idea? She was listening to her husband, Shelley, and Lord Byron talk about the nature of life, and thepossibility of creating a creature.
In the preface, what does the author say she is trying to preserve? She is trying to “preserve the truth of the elementary principles of human nature.”
What is the structure, or form, of the novel? It is an epistolary novel. This means it is written as a series of letters.
Who was writing the letters? They were written by Robert Walton.
To whom were the letters written? They were written to Walton’s sister, Mrs. Margaret Saville, in England.
Where was the writer, and why was he there? He was in the Arctic, exploring unknown regions.
How did he meet Victor Frankenstein? He and the crew found Frankenstein stuck on a large piece of ice. They rescued him andbrought him aboard their vessel.
How did Robert feel about his guest? He liked Frankenstein, and hoped they would become friends.
Why was Frankenstein in the Arctic? He was pursuing the creature.
Who told this part of the story? Victor Frankenstein told his story to Robert Walton.
How did Elizabeth come to live with the Frankensteins? Caroline Frankenstein saw her with a peasant family, and offered to raise her in bettercircumstances.
Who was Frankenstein’s closest friend? It was Henry Clerval.
What was one of the themes of the writers who influenced Frankenstein? The authors he liked wrote about raising ghosts or devils. He tried to mimic them.
What natural phenomena influenced Frankenstein? He watched a tree being hit by lightning during a storm. He became interested in the theories ofelectricity and galvanism.
What two major events happened to Frankenstein when he was seventeen? His mother died and he went to the university at Inglostadt to study.
What goal did Frankenstein decide to pursue? He wanted to try to renew life in a corpse, to “bestow animation upon lifeless matter.”
How did Frankenstein feel when his experiment succeeded, and the creature came to life? He was horrified and disgusted.
What happened to Frankenstein the day after he completed his creation? He became ill with a fever and delirium for several months.
Who took care of Frankenstein during his illness? Henry Clerval did.
What did Clerval give Frankenstein when he was better? He gave him a letter from Elisabeth.
How did Frankenstein and Clerval spend the next several months? Frankenstein introduced Clerval to the professors. They studied and went for walks.
What news did the letter from Frankenstein’s father bring? Frankenstein’s youngest brother, William, had been murdered.
What did Frankenstein see just outside the gates of Geneva as he was returning home? He saw the monster he had created.
Who was accused of committing the murder, and why? Justine, who lived with the family, was accused. She had not been with the family on the nightWilliam was murdered. Several people had seen her the next morning looking confused andfrightened. A servant found the locket that Elizabeth had given to William in Justine’s pocket.
What was Frankenstein’s reaction to this accusation? He was sure the creature had committed the murder. He was torn between wanting to saveJustine and not wanting to reveal his horrible secret to anyone. He considered himself the realmurderer.
What did Frankenstein do about his dilemma? He appealed to the courts to let Justine go free, and told his family that she was innocent, but hedid not tell anyone about the creature.
What happened to the accused person? She confessed under pressure from her priest. She was convicted and hanged.
What was Frankenstein’s state of mind after the trial and its conclusion? He was filled with remorse for all he had done. He was also fearful that the creature wouldcommit other crimes.
Where did Frankenstein go to seek relief? He traveled to the Alpine valley and the village of Chamounix.
Whom did Frankenstein meet after he had ascended to the summit of Montanvert? He met his creature.
How did Frankenstein react to this meeting? He was full of rage and horror. He threatened to kill the creature.
What did the creature want of Frankenstein? He wanted Frankenstein to listen to the account of his life so far.
How did the creature feel when he first felt life? He felt confused because of all the new sensations
What was the reaction of the villagers the creature encountered? They shrieked threw rocks and other things at him and eventually drove him away from the village
Where did the creature take shelter? He stayed in a lean-to attached to a cottage
What observations did the creature make about the people in the cottage? He saw how they cared for each other he saw how the younger boys treated the elder man with great respect and that they were often sad and hungry
What does the creature learn to do, and how does he learn to do this? He learns to speak and then read he does this by observing the cottagers he found a poor man that had several books and he would sit and read them
What was the elder DeLacey’s reaction when the creature entered the cottage and started speaking with him? He was blind and could not see how hideous the creature was so he invited him in and agreed to listen to his story
What was the reaction of the rest of the DeLacey family when they saw the creature? Agatha fainted Sophie fled and Felix hit him with a stick until he left the cottage
What did the creature do at the cottage when he returned and found that the De Lacey’s had moved out? He burns the cottage
What was the reaction of the man whose daughter was saved from drowning by the creature? He accused the creature of attempting to drown her, then shot him when he followed them
What discovery did the creature make when he approached another human? He found out it was William Frankenstein
What did the creature do to this person? He strangled him, killing him
How did the creature feel after his deed? He felt good that he could bring despair to Victor
What did the creature tell Frankenstein about the locket? He put it in Justine’s pocket so she would be blamed for the murder
What did the creature ask Frankenstein to do, and why? Create a female companion for him
How did Frankenstein react to this request? At first he refuses, but then attempts when the creature promises to stop killing
What threat did the creature make when he saw Frankenstein destroy his second creation? He threatens to go on a rampage and kill all the people that Victor cares about
What happened to Frankenstein when he landed his boat? He was accused of Henry Clerval’s murder
Who had been the creature’s most recent victim? Henry Clerval
What happened at Frankenstein’s trial? He got sick
What event occurred next in Frankenstein’s life? He gets married to Elizabeth
What happened on Frankenstein and Elizabeth’s wedding night? The creature kills Elizabeth
What happened to Frankenstein’s father as a result of this latest tragedy? He gets sick and dies
What was the magistrate’s response when Frankenstein told him the entire story of the creature? He is extremely shocked
What did Frankenstein do after he left the magistrate? He tries to stop his creation
What request does Frankenstein make of Robert Walton? Victor requests the Robert continue his search to kill the creature
What happened to Frankenstein at the end of the novel? He dies
What happened to the creature at the end of the novel? He goes off to die by himself

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