Selections from Coleridge: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Christabel, and Kubla Khan

Selections from Coleridge: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Christabel, and Kubla Khan

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Selections from Coleridge: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Christabel, and Kubla Khan

Selections from Coleridge: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Christabel, and Kubla Khan

Read FREE!

Excerpt

Samuel Taylor Coleridge was born at Ottery St. Mary's, Devonshire, on the 2Ist of October, 1772. His father, John Coleridge, who combined the offices of parish clergyman and schoolmaster, was a man of great learning, amazing eccentricity, and childlike simplicity in the ways of the world — traits which his son Samuel Taylor inherited in full measure. It is related of John Coleridge that he sometimes quoted the Old Testament to his country congregations in the original Hebrew, in order that they might hear "the authentic language of the Holy Spirit." The boy Coleridge was unnaturally precocious, being able to read a chapter of the Bible at three years, entering the grammar school at the same age, and beginning the study of Latin at six. His tastes, moreover, were not those of a healthy boy: he played little with his brothers and loved to be much alone, dreaming and reading fairy stories.

In 1781 his father died, leaving a large family in narrow circumstances. Thereupon Coleridge became a pupil of Christ's Hospital, London, a charitable institution for the education of orphan boys. The early years of his school life were unhappy. The discipline was barbarous, the slightest offenses being punished by a flogging; the food . . .

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