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Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin Shelley born August 30 1797 was a prominent though often overlooked literary figure during the Victorian Era of English Literature She was the only child of Mary Wollstonecraft the famous feminist and William Godwin a philosopher and novelist Young Mary grew up in a strange household Her mother died only 10 days after Mary was born From infancy Mary was treated as a unique individual High expectations were placed on her potential She was treated as if she were born under a lucky star Her father was convinced all babies are born with potential waiting to be developed From an early age famous poets philosophers and writers surrounded Marywwwdesert-fairycom After her mother died her father re-married Marys stepmother hated her Together her father and stepmother had two boys and two girls Mary grew up poor Her father was always in debt Bloom 376A peculiar sort of gothicism was part of Marys earliest existence Most every day she would go for a walk with her father to the St Pancras churchyard where her mother was buried Marys father taught Mary to read and spell her name by having her trace her mothers inscription on the stonewwwdesert-fairycomAt the age of sixteen Mary ran away to live with twenty-one year old Percy Bysshe Shelley the un-happily married poet Percys wife Harriet drowned herself when she heard about her husband having feelings for Mary Marys stepsister also committed suicide After the suicides Mary and Percy reluctantly married Fierce public hostility toward the couple drove them to Italy Initially they were happy in Italy but two of their young children died there Mary never fully recovered from this traumaBritish Authors Nevertheless Percy empowered Mary to live as she most desired She enjoyed intellectual and artistic growth love and freedom When Mary was only twenty-four Percy drowned on a ship leaving her penniless with a two year old son After her husbands death poverty forced her to live
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