Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Hidden Henley

On the Henley Road just before entering Marlow is this easily overlooked plaque marking where two

On the Henley Road just before entering Marlow is this easily overlooked plaque marking where two famous writers lived.

There is another plaque at roof level but it is so weather worn that I can only just make out the word “Shelley” and little else.

Despite the male-first listing it is Mary Shelley who has become the most influential of the wife and husband residencies because of the ongoing fascination of her masterpiece novel Frankenstein and all its spin-offs.

The couple had eloped abroad just before this time when Mary was only 16. Evidently their favourite walk was upstream to the curious Medmenham Abbey.

Percy Bysshe Shelley was a radical poet and wrote The Revolt of Islam here, and with Mary lived at this address from 1817-8 although they had taken out a lease for 21 years.



Always controversial, six years earlier he had been expelled from Oxford University for writing in a pamphlet promoting atheism.



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