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Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus

            According to Greek mythology, Prometheus was a Titan God who was spared imprisonment due to the fact that he chose not to fight in the war waged against the Olympians. In doing so, Zeus granted him pardon and assigned him the task of creating man. Prometheus shaped and molded man from the mud beneath his feet and the Goddess Athena breathed life into his clay creations. Prometheus as well as his brother Epimetheus were also endowed with the task of providing mankind with gifts so that humanity may survive and thrive. Epimetheus was given the gift of fur and wings, lavish accessories to brighten up the world but by the time he had got around to man such gifts were no longer available. In seeing this, Prometheus so loved mankind that he stole fire from the Gods and gave it to man so that their struggles were less. This angered Zeus and by this betrayal Zeus sentenced Prometheus to be chained on the mountain of Caucasus and have his liver devoured by an eagle every day for eternity. .
             With the Promethean myth in mind, Mary Shelley historically created one of the most talked about and researched creatures of all time in her 1831 novel "Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus." Shelley called her readers to pinpoint connections between two great figures such as Victor Frankenstein's monster and the mythological Titan God Prometheus. In letter four of Shelley's novel Captain Robert Walton finds his ship completely surrounded by Ice but once the fog clears he discovers more than just frozen chunks, a man, on the brink of destruction, has just been pulled aboard the vessel. This man answers to the name of Frankenstein. It is here Frankenstein retells the story of one dreary night in November when he "beheld the accomplishment of his toils" (34). In chapter five Victor recalls the night he gave his monster life by the spark of electricity. Likewise in the Greek myth, Prometheus also gives life to his creations and just like Victor he molds them into what he believes to be perfection.

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