Charming townhouse where Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein goes on sale

Charming three-storey townhouse where Mary Shelley wrote her classic gothic novel Frankenstein goes on sale for £750,000

A charming home where Frankenstein author Mary Shelley penned her masterpiece is going under the hammer.

Shelley Cottage, named after its famous former resident, was part of a larger historic Grade II listed building when Mary and Percy Shelley bought it in the early 19th century.

The literary greats moved out in 1818 and it was later split into four homes, including this three-storey townhouse.

This property, in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, will be sold at auction with Savills on Wednesday with a guide price of £565,000.

The site is believed to have originally been occupied by a late 16th century home and was rebuilt in the 18th century as one large town house.

This charming three-storey townhouse in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, was once the home of Mary Shelley

The cottage also has a plaque on the outside which reads ‘The Poet & Playwright Percy Bysshe Shelley and his wife Mary authoress of Frankenstein lived here 1817-1818’

The kitchen for the property lives within a conservatory-style extension and contains a gas oven

The sitting room in the property, which was rebuilt in the 18th century but can retrace its origins back to the 1500s

The Shelleys married in late 1816, after the death of Percy’s first wife, and moved to Marlow in March 1817.

Mary Shelley had started writing Frankenstein in Switzerland in 1816 when Lord Byron proposed she, Percy, another writer called John Polidori and he had a competition to write the best horror story.

When the couple returned from the continent, she wrote most of the novel at their home in Marlow. It was published in 1818.

The couple had intended to stay in Marlow long term and had leased this property, then called Albion House, for 21 years, but instead they sold up and moved to Italy as Percy was being hounded by creditors looking to collect unpaid debts of his dead wife Harriet.

Mary returned to England a year after her husband’s death in 1822.

The property has handsome architecture with ornate detail to window openings and frames.

It has 1,177 sq ft of accommodation with a living room, hall and kitchen/dining room on the ground floor, bathroom and double bedroom on the first floor and another double bedroom and a single bedroom on the top floor.

Outside there is a courtyard garden to the rear and the house is within walking distance of the town centre.

Frankenstein author Mary Shelley, pictured, wrote most of her novel while living in the house

The novel, widely regarded as a masterpiece, has been adapted multiple times, including in the 1931 movie. Pictured: Colin Clive as Dr Frankenstein and Dwight Frye as his assistant in film

Actor Boris Karloff appearing as the monster in the 1931 adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

The rear of the property contains a sizeable garden covered in wooden decking and with a brightly coloured shed

 The living room inside the house also contains a wood burning stove to help provide heat on cold winter nights

A view of the rear of the historic property, which house Mary Shelley and her husband Percy Shelly in 1818

A stone on the roof gives a clue as to the property’s largely unknown heritage

The front of the property and its neighbours is sheltered by a delightful wisteria plant

Auctioneer Gary Murphy said: ‘It is always nice to own a historic building that’s got an authentic heritage like this.

‘Shelley Cottage formed part of a larger building that was occupied by Mary Shelley when she wrote Frankenstein.

‘It is probably in need of a little refurbishment, which is good for the auction market – people like to look for opportunities to modernise to their own tastes.

‘It’s in a really good spot – a few minutes walk from Marlow town centre and Tom Kerridge’s Michelin-starred pub The Hand & Flowers.

‘Shelley Cottage is charming. To find a property with such character, history and heritage is very unusual and it’s very well priced as well.’

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