© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.



by Mary Shelley

Frankenstein Fate and Free Will Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (chapter.paragraph)

Quote #1

Yet do not suppose, because I complain a little or because I can conceive a consolation for my toils which I may never know, that I am wavering in my resolutions. Those are as fixed as fate, and my voyage is only now delayed until the weather shall permit my embarkation. (Letter 2.3)

Walton says that his resolutions (to reach the North Pole) are "as fixed as fate," but he stops short of saying that they are fated. Subtle but important: remember, he's the one who survives the end of the novel.

Quote #2

"I thank you," he replied, "for your sympathy, but it is useless; my fate is nearly fulfilled. I wait but for one event, and then I shall repose in peace. (Letter 4.29)

Oh, come on, Victor isn't even trying. He's evidently decided it's easier to blame fate than take responsibility for his actions—unless, that is, he really, genuinely believes that he was destined to create the monster.

Quote #3

Natural philosophy is the genius that has regulated my fate; I desire, therefore, in this narration, to state those facts which led to my predilection for that science. When I was thirteen years of age we all went on a party of pleasure to the baths near Thonon; the inclemency of the weather obliged us to remain a day confined to the inn. In this house I chanced to find a volume of the works of Cornelius Agrippa. I opened it with apathy; the theory which he attempts to demonstrate and the wonderful facts which he relates soon changed this feeling into enthusiasm. (2.6)

Ooh, check it out: Victor opens the book because the weather is bad. Guess who else creates a monster because the weather is bad? Mary Shelley. (Check out our "Nutshell" to learn how bad weather led to her "hideous progeny.") Fate? Accident? Volcanoes?

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...