21
Jun
13

6.21.13 … St Bartholomew’s Hospital/Mary Shelley: “She would hear about surgery and dissection and experimentation upon dead and living bodies as well as the latest theories for how the mind and the soul occupied the body” …

St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London UK, Mary Shelley, Frankenstein, literary history:  I spent an afternoon walking around St. Bartholemew’s Hospital so I loved reading this literary history.

Shelley’s time at Bart’s isn’t reflected most keenly in his own work though, but in that of another.  During his time at the hospital, he had begun his love affair with Mary Godwin. They married in St Mildred’s church, Poultry soon after his first wife drowned herself when he abandoned her.  Mary Shelley would become a ‘silent but devout’ listener to Shelley in his talks with Lawrence.  She would hear about surgery and dissection and experimentation upon dead and living bodies as well as the latest theories for how the mind and the soul occupied the body.  Galvinism, the crude beginning of understanding about the body’s nervous and electrical impulses and the new experiments on ‘re-animating’ corpses would also be something she became familiar with, and all in her mid-teens in the throes of a love affair.  This intense period of first love, mixed with hero worship and both the philosophy and the grim reality of medicine would combine in her novel published in 1818, Frankenstein.

via The famous surgeons of St Bartholomew’s Hospital.


0 Responses to “6.21.13 … St Bartholomew’s Hospital/Mary Shelley: “She would hear about surgery and dissection and experimentation upon dead and living bodies as well as the latest theories for how the mind and the soul occupied the body” …”



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