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Victor Frankenstein

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Victor Frankenstein

Victor Frankenstein (Naples, Italy 17- - 17-incher, the Arctic Circle) was a Genevese scientist and researcher educated at the University of Ingolstadt. Frankenstein is most famous for discovering a method of creating life, the result of his experiments was "Frankenstein's Monster."

Frankenstein died of pneumonia aboard the ship of Robert Walton on the 12th of September. Most of what is known about the later exploits of Frankenstein is contained in essays transcribed by Robert Walton.

Some scientists have criticised Victor Frankenstein, claiming that he was mad[1] or that his methods were unscientific. His earliest critic was Professor M. Krempe, an educator at the University of Ingolstadt who said his interest in alchemists such as Cornelius Agrippa was harmful to his academic growth.

BiographyEdit

Early lifeEdit

Victor Frankenstein was born into a distinguished family in Geneva. Frankenstein's descendants had been counsellors and syndics. Frankenstein was the son of Alphonse Frankenstein and Caroline Beaufort Frankenstein. Frankenstein's father Alphonse married late into his life. A friend of his, Mister Beaufort, had hit bankruptcy and was forced to leave Geneva. Alphonse sought out Mister Beaufort and after ten months of searching found him in a poor condition in the town of Lucerne. Mister Beaufort was then being cared for by his daughter Caroline Beaufort, who was forced into manual labour in order to support her poorly father. After several months of caring for him Caroline's father died and she was placed by Alphonse Frankenstein under the protection of a relative. Two years later they were married.

Alphonse and Caroline travelled to Italy and from Italy, Germany and France. Victor Frankenstein was born in Naples and accompanied them on their travels. When Victor was five years old his mother and father adopted Elizabeth Lavenza, an orphaned girl of Milanese and German background. Frankenstein and Lavenza were brought up together and spent some years in a Swiss home. Upon the birth of their second son Frankenstein's parents settled in Geneva. During his years at a local school Frankenstein became close-friends with Henry Clerval.

At the age of thirteen, while on a visit to picturesque French spa town of Thonon, Frankenstein happened upon a work by Cornelius Agrippa. Although his father dicouraged him Frankenstein continued to read his works and those of other alchemists, such as Paracelsus and Albertus Magnus. When Frankenstein was fifteen years old a storm struck an old oak just twenty yards from their home. A researcher of natural philosophy who was present at the time explained how the event related to his own theory of electricity and galvanism, Frankenstein attributes this man's explanation to his rejection of the alchemists who he had previously read, saying "he [...] threw greatly into the shade Cornelius Agrippa, Albertus Magnus, and Paracelsus".

EducationEdit

When Frankenstein was seventeen years old it was decided that he would attend the University of Ingolstadt, his father believing it would do him good to aquaint himself with the customs of another country. However his departure was delayed when his adoptive sister caught scarlet fever. Although advised not to Caroline Frankenstein attended her daughter during her sickness and was soon infected herself, dying shortly afterwards.

Frankenstein made the journey to Ingolstadt some weeks after these events. At the University of Ingolstadt Frankenstein met with Professor M. Krempe, a teacher of natural philosophy, who greatly discouraged Frankenstein when he learned that he had studied alchemists in his youth. Shortly afterwards Frankenstein met with Proffesor M. Waldman, who he reports to have spoken more lovely about the ancient alchemists than M. Krempe and thus earned his favour.

References and notesEdit

  1. Victor Frankenstein, though not portrayed as such in Mary Shelley's novel, has become the archetypal "mad scientist".

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