illustration of the Ancient Mariner in the ocean with an albatross tied around his neck

The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

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Discuss Coleridge's "Ancient Mariner" as a typical romantic poem. Discuss elements of romanticism such as themes, symbols, and language in this poem.

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Samuel Taylor Coleridge includes many elements of romanticism in his poem "The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner." Most Romantic poems lean heavily towards the idea of Nature and man's place in it - and in Coleridge's rime nature is insulted, affronted and destroyed. Many events in man's life involve killing, but it is usually for things like meat, or self-defence. The symbol of the albatross and the language used to describe it evoke an atmosphere of innocence - yet the bird gets killed and man has invaded Nature's space and violated it. So the space itslef becomes hostile as the feelings get guiltier and symbols such as evil colored water, thirst and discomfort or empty vessels emphasize the fall from the goodness of God and Nature.

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