Foreshadowing in Frankenstein

In Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein, there are many instances of foreshadowing. For instance, the author uses words like "fate" and "omen" throughout the story. These words foreshadow tragic events to come. In another passage, the author says "One man's life or death were but a small price to pay for the acquirement of the knowledge which I sought, for the dominion I should acquire and transmit over the elemental foes of our race." (Shelley 16) This foreshadows the price Frankenstein will eventually pay for his pursuit of knowledge.

Furthermore, the author uses past tense to describe the character of Clerval, thus foreshadowing his death: "A being formed in the 'very poetry of nature.' His wild and enthusiastic imagination was chastened by the sensibility of his heart. His soul overflowed with ardent affections and his friendship was of that devoted and wondrous nature that the world-minded teach us to look for only in the imagination." (Shelley 135).

Finally, Shelley uses metaphors and symbols to foreshadow Victor's eventual death in the novel. Even though the creature doesn't directly kill Victor, he certainly drives him towards it and the author hints at that: "I was possessed by a kind of nightmare. I felt the fiend's grasp in my neck, and could not free myself from it; groans and cries rung in my ears" (Shelley 145).

Foreshadowing in Major Literary Works