Is "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" an allegory?broadly explain the answer please... in detail Editor's Note: the original question reads: "broadly describe how does rime of the ancient mariner...

Is "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" an allegory?

broadly explain the answer please... in detail

Editor's Note: the original question reads: "broadly describe how does rime of the ancient mariner even allegory?"

NB: "broadly" is the opposite of "in detail". In 90 words one can address either the broad picture or one or two details, not both.

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner", like many of the Christian epics of the medieval period that influenced the Romantic movement, acts simultaneously as literal story and as allegorical tale. The difference between the Romantic allegory and the early Christian is that the allegorical level of reading is not predetermined or guided by a set of fixed conventions, and thus rather than a straightforward typological reading, one finds multiple symbolic levels of resonance. The key to allegorical reading of the poem is the innocence of the bird.

Modern ecocritics, especially in light of extinction of certain species of albatross, might read this as an allegorical account of the way in which humanity injures itself by killing innocent creatures, breaking the bonds linking himanity to nature and to immanent divinity. Another reading might look at the albatross as a divine message, and the role of the messenger becoming tranferred from the innocent to the human sinner and the message to warning or cautionary tale, in a recapitulation of the story of Jesus. (The Gospels retell the message of Jesus after people have killed him).

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