he muttered some inarticulate sounds, while a grin wrinkled

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NOTES

he muttered some inarticulate sounds, while a grin wrinkled

There is something irresistibly amusing and at the same time grotesque in this image of an eight-foot baby muttering nonsense syllables and sweetly smiling. That our first image of the Creature is with a grin on his face, however, is highly suggestive philosophically and politically. The "pursuit of happiness" is a moral and political premise to the late eighteenth-century world into which the Creature comes as new-born.

As for the Creature's first interaction with a human being, a reader may well wonder whether it registers upon Victor—or upon Mary Shelley—that this initial close encounter comes via the German word for the mother he lacks, Mutter.