Samuel Taylor Coleridge


Born: 21 October 1772
Died: 25 July 1834 (heart attack)
Birthplace: Devonshire, England
Best known as: The author of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
Samuel Taylor Coleridge was famous for dreamy and somewhat creepy poems like The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Christabel and Kubla Khan (the last of which he allegedly wrote subconsciously during a fever dream). Coleridge and poet William Wordsworth were close pals and their collection of poetry titled Lyrical Ballads (1798) was an early pillar of what became known as the Romantic movement in poetry and art. Coleridge is probably best known for a poem from that collection, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, which describes a sailor who curses himself and his ship by killing an albatross. Coleridge is also remembered for his turbulent personal life, especially his decades-long addiction to opium.
Extra credit: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner includes the famous lines, "Water, water, every where / Nor any drop to drink"... Opium addiction was not a novelty among writers of the era. Others who indulged included Thomas de Quincey and Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

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