The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Questions and Answers
by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

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Why is the Wedding Guest a sadder and wiser man after hearing the Mariner's story in "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"? I need three points that are well detailed. It's a Christian that will be grading it.

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Samuel Taylor Coleridge includes the Wedding Guest only at the beginning and end of the poem; as the Mariner’s audience, he supplies a crucial part of the frame around the tale. There is a clear contrast between his attitude at the beginning and end. While Coleridge does not specify what made the guest “sadder and wiser,” he mentions several characteristics that have changed.

As the poem opens, the Mariner accosts the Guest, who sees him as an old, crazy person and wants only to get away from him: “Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!” he yells. But the Guest soon finds himself transfixed and unable to get away from the Mariner’s look (“his glittering eye”) and his voice (“he cannot chuse but hear,” Coleridge says twice).

One things that Coleridge mentions both at beginning and end is the contrast between the bright frivolities of the wedding and the solemnity of prayer. We get the impression that the Guest was not previously a serious or religious person and that he...

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