Contents Index

miserable wretch

There is no sharper indication of the way in which doubling patterns operate in this novel than the way in which this term shifts its application as the narrations unfold. The two words are first juxtaposed by Victor as he contemplates his newly vivified Creature (1.4.2). This exact phrase is then employed by the Creature (though, of course, we must recall that in terms of strict chronology, his usage predates that of Victor's narrative), as he tells of his sensations upon awakening on the first night of his existence (2.3.1). Now it is he who applies it to Victor. In its final use Victor, having internalized its truth, will invoke the term, in conversation with Walton, to describe the total failure of his existence (Walton 4).