The original Dr. Frankenstein in Mary Shelley's 1818 novel "Frankenstein" is said to be based on another scientist, with a similar last name: Benjamin Franklin.


In his day, Benjamin Franklin was referred to as a modern Prometheus; thus, the exact title of Shelley's novel is indeed, "Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus."

The Frankenstein monster, as did Benjamin Franklin, represents something new that was created out of remnants: while the monster's remnants were parts of bodies, Franklin's was the remnants of the old world in England.

Did Mary Shelley actually base her tale on Franklin? Some say yes but we may never know for sure.