Mary Wollstonecraft <I>Godwin</I> Shelley


Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin Shelley

London, City of London, Greater London, England
Death 1 Feb 1851 (aged 53)
London, City of London, Greater London, England
Burial Bournemouth, Bournemouth Unitary Authority, Dorset, England
Plot 615
Memorial ID 1617 View Source
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Author. Her most famous work is the horror classic novel “Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus”, which gave popular culture the “Frankenstein’s Monster” character. Born in London, England, the second daughter of feminist and writer Mary Wollstonecraft and political journalist William Godwin, her mother died shortly after Mary's birth from a hemorrhage sustained either during deliver or by the actions of the midwife. Unusual for girls at the time, she received a superior education. She published her first poem at the age of ten, and became a political radical and free-thinker like her father. Acclaimed poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and his first wife Harriet often visited Godwin's home and bookshop in London. At the age of 16 Mary eloped to France and then Switzerland with Shelley after Shelley's first wife committed suicide by drowning. During May of 1816, the couple traveled to Lake Geneva. Apparently inspired by a ghost tale contest among her friends, Mary had what she called a waking dream that became the manuscript for “Frankenstein”. In 1818 the Shelleys left England for Italy. While in Rome her son William died, and she suffered a nervous breakdown after his death. She later almost died of a miscarriage, which was followed by the birth of her only surviving child, Percy Florence Shelley. In July 1822, Percy sailed up the Italian coast and was caught in a storm on his return. He drowned July 8 along with his friend Edward Williams and a young boat attendant. Although Mary wrote further novels including “Valperga”, “The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck”, “The Last Man”, and “Falkner” she spent much of her life in promoting her late husband's work, including editing and annotating unpublished material. She returned to England, never to re-marry. She died in London of what some suspect to be a brain tumor. Her last book, sometimes considered her best work, was “Maria”, which was published posthumously.

Bio by: Iola


Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
Daughter of
William & Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin
And Widow of the Late Percy Bysshe Shelley
Born August 30th, 1797, died February 1st, 1851
Percy Florence Shelley
Third Baronet
Son of Percy Bysshe Shelley & Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
Born Nov 12th, 1819, Died Dec. 5th, 1889
Jane Shelley Widow of the above
Born Feb. 24th 1820 Died June 24th, 1899

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 31 Dec 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial 1617
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin Shelley (30 Aug 1797–1 Feb 1851), Find a Grave Memorial ID 1617, citing St Peter Churchyard, Bournemouth, Bournemouth Unitary Authority, Dorset, England ; Maintained by Find a Grave .