Gothic fiction and literature developed as a genre in the middle of the 18th century. Most historians consider the first example of Gothic fiction to be Horace Walpole's novel "The Castle of Otranto," which was published in 1765.
Gothic fiction is a combination of fiction, Romanticism and elements of horror. Though Gothic fiction originated in the mid-18th century, its most famous works were written in the early 19th century, including Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein" and the tales and poems of American author Edgar Allan Poe. Other well-known authors of Gothic fiction include Charlotte Brontë, Ann Radcliffe, Bram Stoker and Jane Austen, who wrote the Gothic novel "Northanger Abbey."