A: After Maryâ€™s husband Percy Shelley drowned while sailing in 1822, his body was cremated on the beach with fellow Romantic poet Lord Byron looking on. As the story goes, Shelleyâ€™s heart refused to burn - at least according to Lord Byron, who admittedly was the Pinocchio of British Romantic Poetry.
So while Shelleyâ€™s cremains were buried in the Protestant cemetery in Rome, his heart was given to his wife Mary (of Frankenstein fame), who wrapped it in a copy of a poem Shelley had written - and promptly stuck it in a drawer. Sounds pretty creepy. And while it is fairly unsentimental on one hand, on the other: What are you going to do with your dead husbandâ€™s unburnable heart, anyway? Put it on display? Wrap it in a new poem every year?
So, basically it remained in storage until Mary Shelleyâ€™s death almost 30 years later. Eventually, however, it was buried in Dorset, England.