We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Imagery and Symbolism in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Essay Sample

essay
The whole doc is available only for registered users OPEN DOC

A limited time offer!

Get a custom sample essay written according to your requirements urgent 3h delivery guaranteed

Order Now

Imagery and Symbolism in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Essay Sample

Imagery in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “The Rime of The Ancient Mariner” plays a significant role: it helps us to feel the atmosphere and sustain the willing suspension of disbelief. The imagery has also been complemented by the effective use of symbol of albatross.

            From the outset the  strong and passionate character of the narrator, the  Ancient Mariner, has been created with the help of the images of  “long grey beard” and “glittering eye”(l.3) who has arrived at a wedding party not just to spoil it but to get rid of the feelings of compulsive guilt for having killed an innocent and benevolent creature like the Albatross. It is a story of disturbing the harmony in nature and then being punished for it. The old and compulsive narrator with “skinny hand”(l.8) “grey-beard loon”(l.10) engages the attention and force them to listen to his story of crime and punishment. The beautiful atmosphere of the wedding is created with images of the bride “red as rose is she”(l.34)

In the sea a sudden and powerful storm-blast troubles the mariners: “tyrannous and strong (l.42) and its impact  is described as it “struck with his o’ertaking wings(l.41-43) chasing the ship southward. The climate froze and was full of ice “green as emerald”(l.54) which  “cracked and growled, and roared and howled”(l.61) The imagery is effective not only as visual but also auditory. The stagnation is vividly portrayed as “idle as a painted ship upon a painted ocean.” (l.117-18) The albatross’ sudden appearance is hailed as a “Christian soul”, the representative to Jesus. “the ice did split with thunder –fit”(l.69) “through fog-smoke white,/glimmered the white moon-shine.”

With the superstition that “the fiends, that plague thee thus”(l.79), the old mariner killed the bird that “brought the fog and mist.”(l.100); then climate became hostile: “all in a hot copper sky,/ The bloody Sun, at noon”(l.111-12) and we have horrid images of  “slimy things did crawl with legs”( l.125), “The death-fires danced at night;/ the water like witch’s oils/ Burnt green, and blue and white.”(l.128-30) “the spirit that plagued us so”(l.132) Then the mariners felt as if their tongues were “choked with soot.”(l.138) The cross which is symbol of purity and suffering is hung around the killer: “Instead of the cross, the Albatross/ about my neck was hung.”(l.140-41) In the use of both imagery and symbols Coleridge is successful.

Work Cited

Abrams, M.H. and Greenblatt, Stephen (eds.) The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 7th Ed. New York. W.W.Norton & Co.  2001. pp.1580-0584

July 4, 2008

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay
Get Access To The Full Essay
icon
300+
Materials Daily
icon
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
icon
Free Plagiarism
Checker
icon
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access
immediately?

Become a member

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!

logo

Emma Taylor

online

Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Can't find What you were Looking for?

Get access to our huge, continuously updated knowledge base

The next update will be in:
14 : 59 : 59
Become a Member