Character Explanations/Quotes for Frankenstein
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Victor- (pg. 28) “Learn from me . . . how dangerous is the acquirement of knowledge, and how much happier that man is who believes his native town to be the world, than he who aspires to become greater than his nature will allow.” Here Victor is warning Walton against following his example. This quote expresses the regrets Victor holds towards the knowledge he grasped and shows that he would have rather been naïve or less knowledgeable. It seems as though Victor believes ignorance is blissful thinking. Walton- (pg. 27) “I spoke of my desire of finding a friend, of my thirst for a more intimate sympathy with a fellow mind than had ever fallen into my lot, and expressed my conviction that a man could boast of little happiness who did not enjoy his blessing.” The personality here of Walton is unveiled because it resembles Victor’s personality at the beginning of his own life. Victor tells his story to warn Walton against being too adventurous and selfish. Walton is at this stage in his life, while Victor lost everything through his trials of this stage.
Walton is naïve and susceptible to becoming just like Victor. The Creature- (pg. 96) “The desert mountains and dreary glaciers are my refuge. […] These bleak skied I hail, for they are kinder to me than your fellow beings. If the multitude of mankind knew of my existence, they would do as you do, and arm themselves to for my destruction. Shall I not then hate them who abhor me? I will keep no terms with my enemies. I am miserable, and they shall share my wretchedness.” This quote deliberately displays The Creature’s solemn feelings because he expresses how he can’t find alliances of men. The only place he can find refuge or safety is amongst nature.
The monster expresses that his creator is to blame, after giving him human emotions and a horrific appearance which drives any form of human relationship away from him. Alphonse Frankenstein- (pg. 70) “Enter the house of mourning, my friend, but with kindness and affection for those who love you, and not with hatred for your enemies.” Here, Frankenstien Senior is calming his son in a letter to come home due to the fatal accidents that happened in Geneva. I thought this quote was significant because the tenderness of his personality is expressed through his encouragement of his son to not feel hatred, but affection. Mr. Frankenstein has lost many people he loved, but he is still able to feel peace and not be overtaken by the other negative feelings that come with mourning.
Elizabeth Lavenza- (pg. 82) “How shall I ever again believe in human goodness?” Elizabeth expresses her grief after after hearing of Justine’s conviction. I believe this quote displays Elizabeth’s reliance in the goodness of human kind, this is ironic because all of the horrible things that were detrimental to her reliance had been caused by the person she loved most, which was Victor. Henry Clerval- (pg. 66) “Clerval, whole eyes and feelings were always quick in discerning the sensations of others, declined the subject, alleging, in excuse, his total ignorance; and the conversation took a more general turn.” This quote is spoken from Victor’s point of view towards his feelings of Henry. Clerval is constantly aware of the feelings of others, especially Victor.
This is noted when Henry was able to detect Victor’s strange attitude toward the science instruments. Clerval is a character one can count on throughout the novel. Justine Moritz-(pg. 83) “I did confess, but I confessed a lie. I confessed, that I might obtain absolution; but now that falsehood lies heavier at my heart than all my other sins.” Justine clearly is one of the strongest characters in the novel. This is stressed throughout the whole conviction. She takes her life by proclaiming that she murdered William, when indeed she did not (though she was somewhat forced to state that she was guilty). Even though her appearance in the novel is short, it’s portrayed that she has a caring heart because she cared for the Frankenstein family.
Caroline Beaufort- (pg. 32) “Caroline Beaufort possessed a mind of an uncommon mould, and her courage rose to support her in her adversity.” Caroline Beaufort is, without a doubt, the strongest character in the novel. Victor calls her courageous because of her willingness to take in Elizabeth Lavenza. Caroline has a heart of gold, molded from growing up homeless and having to take care of her dying father.
Beaufort- (pg. 31) “this man…was of a proud and unbending diposition and could not bear to live in poverty and oblivion in the same country where he had formerly been distinguished for his rank and magnificence.” Beaufort a character full of pride and independence, displayed when he left his country to make a name of his own. His independence and strong heart are shown in which he decides to raise a daughter of his own, then dying of trying to work for what he could not grasp. M. Krempe-(pg. 45) “Have you…really spent your time in studying such nonsense?” M. Krempe, in the first instant we meet the character, gives off an arrogant appeal. His disregard to the alchemists Victor has studied is not only namecalling, but as though he had already formed some sort of bias.
M. Krempe’s thoughts do not hinder Victor’s actions. M. Waldman- (pg. 45) “Such were the professor’s words—rather let me say such the words of the fate—enounced to destroy me.” Victor is completely right in this sense. M. Waldman’s encouragement towards Victor is what drove him mad altogether, but at the same time, the professor illustrates the qualities every teacher should have. This is the care and inclusion that professors should have in their students work. Mr. Kirwin-(pg. 169) “Mr. Kirwin alone understood me; but my gestures and bitter cries were sufficient to affright the other witnesses.” The magistrate in some ways can relate to the reader of the novel; feeling pity and understanding for Frankenstein. Mr. Kirwin’s appearance in the novel is short, but the reader can come to an understanding that he actually has a heart, being able to free Frankenstein and knowing that there is a real heartfelt issue at hand.