Common Misconceptions About Famous Books and Authors

Universal Pictures, Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain
Universal Pictures, Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

Back in 1816, Mary Shelley started writing Frankenstein and later published the story in 1818. Since then, it has become a tale that many of us know well ... or at least think we do. It's a widely held belief, for example, that the monster was created by the evil Dr. Frankenstein and his trusty hunchback lab assistant, Igor. Only, Frankenstein wasn’t a doctor at all, and nowhere in the book does it say that he is. Instead, he's actually a student—and, at least in the original story, a sidekick-less student at that. While Frankenstein had a lab assistant in several adaptations of the book, it’s believed that Igor is simply a stock henchman character of Gothic literature.

But incorrect plot points aren’t the only common errors readers face when it comes to literature: Characters are also often misquoted. Search any of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's original Sherlock Holmes books and you won't find the famed detective uttering "Elementary, my dear Watson” even once.

Many common literary misconceptions extend beyond the page and to the world's most famous authors. For example: While it's true that Jane Austen didn't publish any books under her own name while she was alive, her identity was not very secret. Many people knew exactly who she was and what she did (the Prince Regent even invited her to his library).

In this episode of "Misconceptions," we're getting to the bottom of the many wild inaccuracies that surround the works and lives of such legendary writers as William Shakespeare and Ernest Hemingway. You can watch the full episode below.

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Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

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Common Misconceptions About Depression

Justin Dodd, ready to debunk mental illness myths.
Justin Dodd, ready to debunk mental illness myths.
Mental Floss, YouTube

Contrary to what so many stock photos seem to indicate, depression doesn’t always cause you to stare gloomily out a rainy window or sit in an empty corner with your head in your hands. It’s also not “all in your head” in a way that you can simply snap out of, though it does technically exist in your brain.

In short, there are a lot of misconceptions about depression—and on this episode of Misconceptions, Mental Floss’s Justin Dodd is debunking some of the most prevalent ones. Speaking of prevalence: The condition itself is quite a bit more common than you may think. According to the World Health Organization, more than 264 million people suffer from depression. And while antidepressants aren’t exactly a cure, they can definitely alleviate its symptoms (without altering your personality or curbing your creativity).

Stigmas surrounding mental illness are heavily based on a lack of understanding, so we’re hoping this video can help break down inaccuracies and encourage acceptance. Press play below to learn more.

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