that half kind of belief
With so many allusions to Coleridge's writings governing the exposition of this novel, including the very notion of such a reiterated self-justification as Victor is presenting (see III:6:21
), it would not be surprising to see this remark as a recasting of his fine distinction between truth and the "willing suspension of disbelief" in literature (see Biographia Literaria
, Chapter 14). But, in fact, there is no assurance that Mary Shelley would have come upon the formulation in time to have inserted it into the novel. P. B. Shelley is recorded as having finished Coleridge's Biographia Literaria
on 8 December 1817. Frankenstein
was advertised as published on 1 January 1818.