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Frankenstein: Or, The Modern Prometheus (Paperback)
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You will rejoice to hear that no disaster has accompanied the commencement of an enterprisewhich you have regarded with such evil forebodings. I arrived here yesterday, and my first taskis to assure my dear sister of my welfare and increasing confidence in the success of myundertaking.I am already far north of London, and as I walk in the streets of Petersburgh, I feel a coldnorthern breeze play upon my cheeks, which braces my nerves and fills me with delight. Do youunderstand this feeling? This breeze, which has travelled from the regions towards which I amadvancing, gives me a foretaste of those icy climes. Inspirited by this wind of promise, mydaydreams become more fervent and vivid. I try in vain to be persuaded that the pole is the seatof frost and desolation; it ever presents itself to my imagination as the region of beauty anddelight. There, Margaret, the sun is for ever visible, its broad disk just skirting the horizon anddiffusing a perpetual splendour. There-for with your leave, my sister, I will put some trust inpreceding navigators-there snow and frost are banished; and, sailing over a calm sea, we maybe wafted to a land surpassing in wonders and in beauty every region hitherto discovered on thehabitable globe. Its productions and features may be without example, as the phenomena of theheavenly bodies undoubtedly are in those undiscovered solitudes. What may not be expected in acountry of eternal light? I may there discover the wondrous power which attracts the needle andmay regulate a thousand celestial observations that require only this voyage to render theirseeming eccentricities consistent for ever. I shall satiate my ardent curiosity with the sight of apart of the world never before visited, and may tread a land never before imprinted by the foot ofman. These are my enticements, and they are sufficient to conquer all fear of danger or death andto induce me to commence this laborious voyage with the joy a child feels when he embarks in alittle boat, with his holiday mates, on an expedition of discovery up his native river. Butsupposing all these conjectures to be false, you cannot contest the inestimable benefit which Ishall confer on all mankind, to the last generation, by discovering a passage near the pole tothose countries, to reach which at present so many months are requisite; or by ascertaining thesecret of the magnet, which, if at all possible, can only be effected by an undertaking such asmine.