You and your students are probably familiar with the infamous story of "Frankenstein" by Mary Shelly. Long-time educators have lost count of just how many students paraded around dressed up as Frankenstein, but know that no Halloween would be complete without one. This timeless monster is an all time student favorite, but just how much do your students truly know about the origins of Frankenstein? This is the perfect opportunity to teach them the history of Mary Shelley's novel and who knows! There might be some facts here that you didn't know as well! Read more to find out how much you actually know about this classic.
1. Frankenstein only exists, because someone challenged Mary Shelley to write the best horror story.
Mary Shelley, her husband Percy Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Polidori competed against each other to see who could write the best horror story. Needless to say, Mary Shelley won the match.
2. Both of her parents were philosophers.
Her mother Mary Woolstonecraft was a writer, philosopher, and advocate of women's rights. Meanwhile, her father, William Godwin, was a political philosopher, journalist, and novelist. Knowing this, it's no wonder that...
3. ...Mary Shelly was just a teenager when she started writing Frankenstein.
She was only 18 when she started writing it! That's not too far away from some of your students' ages. Best. Inspiration. EVER
4. The film Frankenstein (1931) was the first film to portray the monster with bolts, stitches, and a flat head.
This is the version of Frankenstein most of your students may be familiar with, but it's actually not from the book itself! In the book, the creature is described as having "flowing hair, yellow, almost-translucent skin, glowing eyes and black lips."
5. Frankenstein was the name of the scientist who created the creature, not the creature itself.
This is one of the most common misconceptions about Frankenstein. In the novel, the creature is actually nameless! Victor Frankenstein is the name of the scientist and was inspired by a castle in Germany called Frankenstein Castle, which used to be occupied by an alchemist that conducted experiments.
The history of Mary Shelley and Frankenstein goes much farther than just 5 facts, but we hope that these facts will inspire your students to learn more about history and how things came to be! Is there any fun fact that we missed? Let us know in the comments below or share it with us our other social media, we'd love to hear from you! Find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest!