"No word, no expression could body forth the kind of relation in which she stood to me--my more than sister, sine till death she was to be mine only."The last sentence of chapter1... What is that...

"No word, no expression could body forth the kind of relation in which she stood to me--my more than sister, sine till death she was to be mine only."

The last sentence of chapter1... What is that meant? What literary term in it?

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MaudlinStreet's profile pic

MaudlinStreet | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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We also see foreshadowing with this quote. Victor is incredibly possessive of Elizabeth, and in the original manuscript, Shelley intended for them to be cousins. She separated the relationship a bit more in the published version, but there is still an unsettling amount of obsession on Victor's part. this also sets up Victor's devotion to Elizabeth, which comes into play later when he frantically rushes home to escape his monster. Even his decision to create & then destroy the female counterpart to his own monster is driven by thoughts of protecting his love at all costs.

The future hint is seen at the last line "till death she was to be mine only." We know that Victor intends to marry Elizabeth, so we must ask ourselves: What could possibly separate the two by death? Whose death? Who will be responsible? The foreshadowing lets us know death will be imminent, but leaves us in suspense.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The idea conveyed in this sentence is about commitment and relationship.  One of the interesting parts of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is the notion of personal responsibility.  As you read through the book, you will become more aware of this theme about how much responsibility we have towards one another as human beings, how much creators are responsible for their creations, and how much notion of commitment both have towards one another.  This sentence indicates that there are relationships one have that are so strong that even death does not remove those bonds.  The literary term or device used is a type of metaphor or image that compares relationships and responsibilities to the imminent notion of death.  The idea we traditionally have of death is that it is the ultimate termination point.  Yet, the closing of chapter 1 asks us if there are some relationships and connections that continue on even after death.

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