How do meter and point of view contribute to the author's meaning in "Christabel" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The long narrative poem, "Christabel," by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, is written in iambic tetrameter couplets. This meter, especially given the way Coleridge varies the number of unstressed syllables in many lines and uses alliteration, conveys a sense of Old English verse, and such narrative poems with supernatural elements as "Beowulf" and "Dream of the Rood."

The point of view is third person, giving us the ability to see the action essentially from the outside as spectators. this is the most flexible form of authorial voice as it allows narrative flexibility by not being restricted to the time sequence of knowledge of a single character. In the other hand, the narrator primarily follows and has access to the interiority of Christabel, evoking the reader's sympathy for her.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial