Death and the Maidens

Death and the Maidens : Fanny Wollstonecraft and the Shelley Circle

3.85 (107 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Hardback
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Description

Set against the background of a Europe recovering from the Napoleonic Wars, Janet Todd brings to life the terrible and tragic story - the Shelley circle. 1816 was the fateful year when the quintessential Romantic poets Byron and Shelley shared a hectic creative and sexual menage in Switzerland. It spawned some of the greatest poetry in the English language, and Frankenstein too, but it also led directly to the tragic suicide of two young women and destroyed the life of at least two others. The misery of the women and children who loved or came close to Shelley is largely unacknowledged because he is remembered himself as a martyr to art who died an early death. His fantasies of utopian communities of free love - as so often - may have been fun for the men but destroyed the woman involved. In 1816, he ran away from his first wife, Harriet, to live with Mary Imlay-Wollstonecraft, and her half-sister. But he also abandoned the third tragic half-sister Fanny, neglected in every previous book about the Wollstonecraft-Godwin-Shelley-Byron circle and brought to life again for the first time here. Fanny is the most heartbreaking and ignored victim in English literature. Janet Todd finally gives her some recompense.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 304 pages
  • 159 x 237mm
  • Profile Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • 186197955X
  • 9781861979551
  • 1,584,692

About Janet Todd

Janet Todd Professor of English at Aberdeen University and lives in Cambridge. She has written numerous books including a celebrated biography of Aphra Benn, the first woman playwright, and edited the definitive edition of Jane Austen.show more

Rating details

107 ratings
3.85 out of 5 stars
5 22% (24)
4 47% (50)
3 26% (28)
2 4% (4)
1 1% (1)
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