How would I write a logbook for Coleridge's poem "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner?"

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jameadows eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The logbook of the ship's voyage would first show the ship leaving the harbor. Then, as the ship headed south, a storm appeared. Then, the ship encountered mist and snow, and the ship encountered ice as high as the mast. The ship traveled between the green ice and did not see land of any kind--only ice. Then, an albatross appeared, and the ship followed it, and the ice cracked to let the ship throughout to go north. The ship followed a southerly wind, and the albatross came to the ship each day until the mariner shot it with his cross bow.

Then, the sun appeared on the right, and the southerly wind was still blowing. The ship followed the wind and picked up speed. Then, it became hot, and the sun was red and rose above the mast at noon. For many days, there was no wind, and the ship was stuck. There was no water, and the crew saw slimy creatures in the sea. They saw fires at night, and the sea burned and looked green, blue, and white. 

The crew continued to have no water and suffer from dehydration. Then, the crew saw something in the western sky. The parched and exhausted crew believed that they saw a sail approaching. Then the spectral ship disappeared in the thick night. Then, 200 men died on the ship.

The mariner sailed on alone with the dead corpses rotting on the ship. He only saw the slimy creatures in the ocean. While he was admiring the sea snakes he saw from the ship, the albatross slipped off his neck into the sea. 

Then, the mariner slept. When he woke up, he found the buckets on board the ship filled with dew. A rainstorm came on, and the dead sailors awakened and began to work on the ship. Then, the ship took a mighty bound, and the mariner heard two voices in the sky speaking about how he killed the albatross. The mariner saw the dead men reappear on the ship as it moved along in clear weather. He returned to the harbor from which he had originally departed and saw a band of seraphs appear. The mariner was rescued by a skiff. When he boarded the skiff, the pilot of the skiff collapsed, and the ship the mariner had been traveling on sank in a whirlpool. The logbook would contain the descriptions of these events and weather during the ship's voyage to Antarctic and back home again.


shake99 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

"The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" is Samuel Taylor Coleridge's most famous work. It is one of the early works of the Romantic era, published as part of Coleridge's collaboration with William Wordsworth in the collection Lyrical Ballads in 1798.

Most, but not all, of the poem takes place aboard a ship that is forced southward by a storm, almost to the South Pole. It takes quite a while for the ship to make its way back to England, and on the way there and back the crew, and then the lone-surviving speaker, see and experience many strange things.

A ship's logbook is meant to keep a daily record of distance travelled, navigational information, and incidents of note that occur on the voyage.

In Part I of the story, you might note in the logbook that a storm blew the ship far off course until they were caught up in snow and mist and then trapped in ice.

In Part II you would probably record the fact that after the crew headed back north for awhile, the wind died. As the boat and crew sat in the still water, slimy creatures appeared upon the sea.

Parts III through IV also offer plenty of subject matter for the log. Section VII is more concerned with the ship's arrival in England.

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The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

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