Considered the first Gothic novel written in England, "The Castle of Otranto" is the story of Manfred who has usurped the throne of Otranto from Alfonso the Good. When the story opens, it is the wedding day of Manfred's son, but as he is walking through the courtyard a giant helmet falls on his head and kills him. Manfred, having no other male heir, decides to put off his wife and marry his son's intended, Isabella, himself. A young knight appears to defend her and he is imprisoned in the giant helmet. Isabella runs to the protection of the church with the help of the knight who has escaped. Manfred, however, is not to be denied and he pursues Isabella.
This report prepared by Jack Goodstein