Samuel Taylor Coleridge

(3547 words)
  • Seamus Perry (Oxford University)

Samuel Taylor Coleridge was born on 21 October 1772, the youngest of ten children, in Ottery St. Mary in Devon. Coleridge would recall his father, the Reverend John Coleridge, as a scholarly, saintly, comically distracted figure; but he was evidently a person of some determination too, having risen from an unpromising background to become vicar of St Mary's, a handsome and substantial church, and Headmaster of the Grammar School. Coleridge's mother, Ann Bowdon, came of a farming family from Exmoor. Young Sam (he grew to hate his name) was dreamy, solitary and precociously bookish, absorbed especially by the Arabian Nights, which he devoured at the age of six. (He was to claim that this “early reading of Faery Tales, & Genii” w…

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Perry, Seamus. "Samuel Taylor Coleridge". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 17 July 2001
[, accessed 29 November 2015.]

Articles on Coleridge's works

  1. Biographia Literaria
  2. Christabel
  3. Frost at Midnight
  4. Kubla Khan
  5. Lyrical Ballads
  6. The Eolian Harp
  7. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Related Groups

  1. English Romanticism
  2. Gothic, Grotesque& Supernatural Fiction
  3. The Sonnet Tradition