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sciftw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Part three begins with giving the reader and the mariner hope that not all is lost.  He sees a ship approaching in the distance, and he shouts out to his crew mates that they are all saved.  Unfortunately the ship approaching is a skeletal looking ghost ship. 

Are those her sails that glance in the Sun,
Like restless gossameres?

Are those her ribs through which the Sun

Did peer, as through a grate?
The ghost ship is crewed by two individuals: Death and Life-In-Death.  The two of them are playing a dice game.  Perhaps they are playing to decide the fates of the mariner's crew.  Regardless, Life-In-Death wins the game.  Night falls.  The moon rises, and 200 men die aboard the mariner's ship.  As each man dies, he looks at the mariner with a curse.  
Too quick for groan or sigh,
Each turned his face with a ghastly pang,
And cursed me with his eye.

Four times fifty living men,
(And I heard nor sigh nor groan)
With heavy thump, a lifeless lump,
They dropped down one by one.
After each man dies, his soul then flies out of his body past the mariner.  It reminds the mariner of how his arrow flew that killed the albatross.  
Read the study guide:
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

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