Samuel Taylor Coleridge

In: English and Literature

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Samuel Taylor Coleridge: A Spiritual Connection Between “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” and the Holy Scripture.

Donald McCoy

Liberty University
September 15, 2014

Many authors attempt to convey some sort of message in their writings, whether it be that of Romances’ by Shelley, the plight of women in the writings of Wollstonecraft, or the political satire behind Jonathan Swift’s works. It can even be said that some essays have been written to bring across a moral lesson to the reader. Homer’s epic poem “The Odyssey”, in which the main character is rescued by the Greek gods and then embarks on a journey to return to his homeland, all the while facing obstacles that test his faith, loyalty, and solidify his virtues and beliefs. Few authors have had the success Homer gained in his grand tale featuring the main character, Odysseus. Arguably, even fewer authors have tried to emulate the Christian faith within their works with much success. Mr. Samuel Taylor Coleridge is one such author. Coleridge’s lyrical ballad “The Rime of an Ancient Mariner” is one in which numerous religious themes are adequately complimented. Most notable of the comparisons is that of the Albatross and how it symbolizes Jesus Christ. In the ballad, Coleridge writes,
At length did cross an Albatross,
Thorough the fog it came;
As if it had been a Christian soul,
We hailed it in God’s name. (Mariner, Line 65).

In the ballad, the men on the ship had become lost, with mist, snow, and ice converging on them. Suddenly, from a distance within the mist and fog appears an Albatross to show the men on the ship the way to safety through the troublesome waters. Likewise, due to the Original sin committed by Adam and Eve while in the Garden of Eden, man has lost their way from God. As a result, man has wandered around this world lost, waiting for a savior to lead them through the troubled…...

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