Aug 12, 2022 • 24M

The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1798)

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Anthony Esolen
Poetry Aloud will help you learn how to read poetry with your ears. Unlike children with bad table manners, poetry is meant to be heard and not just seen. Join Anthony Esolen every other week (or so) as he introduces and discusses a longish poem and then reads it aloud.
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Here, ladies and gentlemen, is a poem that schoolchildren once loved, and that has given us the idea of the “albatross around the neck,” the punishment that attends to the Ancient Mariner in our ballad today, because without any motivation, he had so little regard for the beautiful creature of God that he shot it, for no reason but that he could. The Mariner endures a terrible penance, and he is forgiven, but on condition — that he never leave off, but he must wander round the world, and when he meets some man whom he knows must hear his tale, he must tell it, so that the man may avert the same kind of sin and its dreadful punishment.

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The Rime of the Ancient Mariner  


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