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The Use of Sensory Imagery in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Coleridge

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In The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Samuel Coleridge writes of a sailor bringing a tale to life as he speaks to a wedding guest. An ancient Mariner tells of his brutal journey through the Pacific Ocean to the South Pole. Coleridge suffers from loneliness, because of his lifelong need for love and livelihood; similarly, during the Mariner’s tale, his loneliness shows when he becomes alone at sea, because of the loss of his crew. Having a disastrous dependence to opium and laudanum, Coleridge, in partnership with Wordsworth, writes this complicated, difficult to understand, yet appealing poem, which becomes the first poem in the 1798 edition of Lyrical Ballads. The Mariner’s frame of mind flip-flops throughout the literary ballad, a…show more content…
Originally aiming to land somewhere on the equator, the Mariner’s ship lands in the South Pole, because of a strong breeze from a storm-blast; the Mariner states in his tale that the wind is “tyrannous and strong.” Though suffering a dreadful drought, the Mariner receives the blessing of the cool, wet rain as it pours down. As the Mariner takes in the rain, he begins to think of his crew, who are all dead.
The drop of the shipmates, the cracking of ice, and the roaring of the wind all appeal to the sense of hearing, while the Mariner rants his tale. As the ancient Mariner’s crew a;; die, he fails to hear a groan as they drop one by one; however, the sailor hears the thump of the bodies as, separately, they collide with the deck of the ship. The ice cracks, growls, roars, and howls as the crew travel through it; Coleridge writes that the ice is “like noises in a swound.” ”And soon I hear a roaring wind,” states the Mariner during his tale; Coleridge also writes that “the upper air burst into life,” which causes the crew to hear a strong breeze. Using the sense of feeling, Coleridge writes about the drop of the shipmates, the cracking of the ice, and the roaring of the wind.
Using the senses of seeing, feeling, and hearing in The Rise of the Ancient Mariner, Samuel Coleridge demonstrates the use of many sensory details. The appearance of the Ancient Mariner, the Nightmare Life-in
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