Frances Imlay, later Godwin, 1794-1817, was the daughter
of Mary Wollstonecraft and Gilbert Imlay and half-sister to Mary Shelley. After Mary Wollstonecraft's
death William Godwin adopted the
three-year old whom he raised as if his own child until she was eleven.
Always a troubled girl, Fanny had neither financial independence nor real
prospects. In October 1817 she left Godwin's home ostensibly to visit her
maternal aunts who ran a school in Dublin. On the night of October 9 she
checked into a hotel in Swansea, Wales, where she took an overdose of
laudanum and died.