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my imagination was vivid

Victor's remembrance alters the emphasis of his earlier account, which contrasted his own interest in facticity with Elizabeth's (and Henry Clerval's) delight in the imagination (1.1.4). However much he may be inflating the record here, the reader cannot but be aware of the ambivalence about the nature of the imagination expressed in these lines. That Victor once "trod heaven in [his] thoughts" cannot mitigate the hellish misery to which he has now sunk, nor even at that earlier point in his remembrance could it guarantee that the outcome of such an introverted elation would have an essential value. The imagination, in this analysis, might be necessary for great achievement, but by itself it is by no means sufficient, being merely an instrument, and, as such, easily capable of indulging a self-absorbed solipsism.