Victor's interest in science, discussed in chapter 2, reveals curiosity, vanity, and bookishness as elements of his personality.
Victor tells us that he always remembers that his curiosity, combined with "earnest research to learn the hidden laws of nature," inspired a feeling that was more like rapture than a simple gladness.
These interests took him deep into consideration of the most essential questions, "the secrets of heaven and earth." The itch grew stronger, however, and turned toward manipulating nature and "playing God."
Victor speaks of finding a book, one day, and immersing himself in it, showing that learning from text as well as from nature was part of his scientific inclination. However, it was Agrippa's book of alchemy, not modern science, and his father chastised him for this.
Victor's passion for "natural philosophy" continued to grow, turning from a childish interest to an unstoppable force, a torrent, and he laments that it "swept away all my hopes and joys."
We know from...
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