In linguistics, grammar is the set of structural rules governing the composition of clauses and words in any given natural language. The term refers to the study of such rules, this field includes phonology and syntax complemented by phonetics and pragmatics. Speakers of a language have a set of internalized rules for using that language, these rules constitute that language's grammar; the vast majority of the information in the grammar is – at least in the case of one's native language – acquired not by conscious study or instruction, but by observing other speakers. Much of this work is done during early childhood. Thus, grammar is the cognitive information underlying language use; the term "grammar" can be used to describe the rules that govern the linguistic behavior of a group of speakers. The term "English grammar", may have several meanings, it may refer to the whole of English grammar, that is, to the grammars of all the speakers of the language, in which case, the term encompasses a great deal of variation.
Alternatively, it may refer only to what is common to the grammars of all, or of the vast majority of English speakers. Or it may refer to the rules of a particular well-defined variety of English. A specific description, study or analysis of such rules may be referred to as a grammar. A reference book describing the grammar of a language is called a "reference grammar" or "a grammar". A explicit grammar that exhaustively describes the grammatical constructions of a particular lect is called a descriptive grammar; this kind of linguistic description contrasts with linguistic prescription, an attempt to discourage or suppress some grammatical constructions, while codifying and promoting others, either in an absolute sense, or in reference to a standard variety. For example, preposition stranding occurs in Germanic languages, has a long history in English, is considered standard usage. John Dryden, objected to it, leading other English speakers to avoid the construction and discourage its use. Outside linguistics, the term grammar is used in a rather different sense.
In some respects, it may be used more broadly, including rules of spelling and punctuation, which linguists would not consider to form part of grammar, but rather as a part of orthography, the set of conventions used for writing a language. In other respects, it may be used more narrowly, to refer to a set of prescriptive norms only and excluding those aspects of a language's grammar that are not subject to variation or debate on their normative acceptability. Jeremy Butterfield claimed that, for non-linguists, "Grammar is a generic way of referring to any aspect of English that people object to." The word grammar is derived from Greek γραμματικὴ τέχνη, which means "art of letters", from γράμμα, "letter", itself from γράφειν, "to draw, to write". The same Greek root appears in graphics and photograph. Vedic Sanskrit is the earliest language known to the world; the grammatical rules were formulated by Indra, etc. but the modern systematic grammar, of Sanskrit, originated in Iron Age India, with Yaska, Pāṇini and his commentators Pingala and Patanjali.
Tolkāppiyam, the earliest Tamil grammar, is dated to before the 5th century AD. The Babylonians made some early attempts at language description,In the West, grammar emerged as a discipline in Hellenism from the 3rd century BC forward with authors like Rhyanus and Aristarchus of Samothrace; the oldest known grammar handbook is the Art of Grammar, a succinct guide to speaking and writing and written by the ancient Greek scholar Dionysius Thrax, a student of Aristarchus of Samothrace who established a school on the Greek island of Rhodes. Dionysius Thrax's grammar book remained the primary grammar textbook for Greek schoolboys until as late as the twelfth century AD; the Romans based their grammatical writings on it and its basic format remains the basis for grammar guides in many languages today. Latin grammar developed by following Greek models from the 1st century BC, due to the work of authors such as Orbilius Pupillus, Remmius Palaemon, Marcus Valerius Probus, Verrius Flaccus, Aemilius Asper.
A grammar of Irish originated in the 7th century with the Auraicept na n-Éces. Arabic grammar emerged with Abu al-Aswad al-Du'ali in the 7th century; the first treatises on Hebrew grammar appeared in the context of Mishnah. The Karaite tradition originated in Abbasid Baghdad; the Diqduq is one of the earliest grammatical commentaries on the Hebrew Bible. Ibn Barun in the 12th century compares the Hebrew language with Arabic in the Islamic grammatical tradition. Belonging to the trivium of the seven liberal arts, grammar was taught as a core discipline throughout the Middle Ages, following the influence of authors from Late Antiquity, such as Priscian. Treatment of vernaculars began during the High Middle Ages, with isolated works such as the First Grammatical Treatise, but became influential only in the Renaissance and Baroque periods. In 1486, Antonio de Nebrija published Las introduciones Latinas contrapuesto el romance al Latin, the first Spanish grammar, Gramática de la lengua castellana, in 1492.
During the 16th-century Italian Ren
Jean François Boissonade de Fontarabie
Jean François Boissonade de Fontarabie was a French classical scholar. He was born in Paris. In 1792 he entered the public service during the administration of General Dumouriez. Driven out in 1795, he was restored by Lucien Bonaparte, during whose time of office he served as secretary to the prefecture of the Upper Marne, he resigned public employment permanently, in order to devote his time to the study of Greek. In 1809 he was appointed deputy professor of Greek at the faculty of letters at Paris, titular professor in 1813 on the death of Pierre Henri Larcher. In 1828 he succeeded Jean-Baptiste Gail in the chair of Greek at the Collège de France, he held the offices of librarian of the Bibliothèque du Roi, perpetual secretary of the Académie des Inscriptions. Boissonade is the father of Gustave Emile Boissonade. Boissonade chiefly devoted his attention to Greek literature: Philostratus and Epistolae Marinus, Vita procli Tiberius Rhetor, De Figuris Nicetas Eugenianus, Drosilla et Charicles Herodian, Partitiones Aristaenetus, Epistolae Eunapius, Vitae Sophistarum Babrius, Fables Tzetzes, Allegoriae Iliadis a Collection of Greek Poets in 24 vols.
The Anecdota Graeca and Anecdota Nova are important for the Greek grammarians. A selection of his papers was published by Ferdinand Colincamp, Critique littéraire sous le premier Empire, vol. I of which contains a complete list of his works, a "Notice Historique sur Monsieur B." by Joseph Naudet
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Samuel Taylor Coleridge was an English poet, literary critic and theologian who, with his friend William Wordsworth, was a founder of the Romantic Movement in England and a member of the Lake Poets. He wrote the poems The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Kubla Khan, as well as the major prose work Biographia Literaria, his critical work on William Shakespeare, was influential, he helped introduce German idealist philosophy to English-speaking culture. Coleridge coined many familiar phrases, including suspension of disbelief, he had a major influence on American transcendentalism. Throughout his adult life Coleridge had crippling bouts of depression, he was physically unhealthy, which may have stemmed from a bout of rheumatic fever and other childhood illnesses. He was treated for these conditions with laudanum. Coleridge was born on 21 October 1772 in the town of Ottery St Mary in England. Samuel's father was the Reverend John Coleridge, the well-respected vicar of St Mary's Church, Ottery St Mary and was headmaster of the King's School, a free grammar school established by King Henry VIII in the town.
He had been master of Hugh Squier's School in South Molton and lecturer of nearby Molland. John Coleridge had three children by his first wife. Samuel was the youngest of ten by the Reverend Mr. Coleridge's second wife, Anne Bowden the daughter of John Bowden, Mayor of South Molton, Devon, in 1726. Coleridge suggests that he "took no pleasure in boyish sports" but instead read "incessantly" and played by himself. After John Coleridge died in 1781, 8-year-old Samuel was sent to Christ's Hospital, a charity school, founded in the 16th century in Greyfriars, where he remained throughout his childhood and writing poetry. At that school Coleridge became friends with Charles Lamb, a schoolmate, studied the works of Virgil and William Lisle Bowles. In one of a series of autobiographical letters written to Thomas Poole, Coleridge wrote: "At six years old I remember to have read Belisarius, Robinson Crusoe, Philip Quarll – and I found the Arabian Nights' Entertainments – one tale of which made so deep an impression on me that I was haunted by spectres whenever I was in the dark – and I distinctly remember the anxious and fearful eagerness with which I used to watch the window in which the books lay – and whenever the sun lay upon them, I would seize it, carry it by the wall, bask, read."
However, Coleridge seems to have appreciated his teacher, as he wrote in recollections of his school days in Biographia Literaria: I enjoyed the inestimable advantage of a sensible, though at the same time, a severe master At the same time that we were studying the Greek Tragic Poets, he made us read Shakespeare and Milton as lessons: and they were the lessons too, which required most time and trouble to bring up, so as to escape his censure. I learnt from him, that Poetry that of the loftiest, that of the wildest odes, had a logic of its own, as severe as that of science. In our own English compositions he showed no mercy to phrase, metaphor, or image, unsupported by a sound sense, or where the same sense might have been conveyed with equal force and dignity in plainer words... In fancy I can hear him now, exclaiming Harp? Harp? Lyre? Pen and ink, you mean! Muse, Muse? Your Nurse's daughter, you mean! Pierian spring? Oh aye! the cloister-pump, I suppose! Be this as it may, there was one custom of our master's, which I cannot pass over in silence, because I think it... worthy of imitation.
He would permit our theme exercises... to accumulate, till each lad had four or five to be looked over. Placing the whole number abreast on his desk, he would ask the writer, why this or that sentence might not have found as appropriate a place under this or that other thesis: and if no satisfying answer could be returned, two faults of the same kind were found in one exercise, the irrevocable verdict followed, the exercise was torn up, another on the same subject to be produced, in addition to the tasks of the day, he wrote of his loneliness at school in the poem Frost at Midnight: "With unclosed lids had I dreamt/Of my sweet birthplace." From 1791 until 1794, Coleridge attended Cambridge. In 1792, he won the Browne Gold Medal for an ode. In December 1793, he left the college and enlisted in the 15th Light Dragoons using the false name "Silas Tomkyn Comberbache" because of debt or because the girl that he loved, Mary Evans, had rejected him, his brothers arranged for his discharge a few months under the reason of "insanity" and he was readmitted to Jesus College, though he would never receive a degree from the university.
At Jesus College, Coleridge was introduced to political and theological ideas considered radical, including those of the poet Robert Southey. Coleridge joined Southey in a plan, soon abandoned, to found a utopian commune-like society, called Pantisocracy, in the wilderness of Pennsylvania. In 1795, the two friends married sisters Sara and Edith Fricker, in St Mary Redcliffe, but Coleridge's marriage with Sara proved unhappy, he grew to detest his wi
Basil II, nicknamed the Bulgar Slayer, was a Byzantine Emperor from the Macedonian dynasty whose effective reign—the longest of any Byzantine monarch—lasted from 10 January 976 to 15 December 1025. He had been associated with the throne since 960 as a junior colleague to a succession of senior emperors: his father Romanos II, his step-father Nikephoros II Phokas, John I Tzimiskes. In addition to these emperors, Basil's influential great-uncle Basil Lekapenos held power for several decades until he was overthrown in 985. From 962, Basil II's brother Constantine, who succeeded him as Constantine VIII, was nominal co-emperor; the early years of Basil's reign were dominated by civil wars against two powerful generals from the Anatolian aristocracy. Basil oversaw the stabilization and expansion of the eastern frontier of the Byzantine Empire and the complete subjugation of the First Bulgarian Empire, its foremost European foe, after a prolonged struggle. Although the Byzantine Empire had made a truce with the Fatimid Caliphate in 987–988, Basil led a campaign against the Caliphate that ended with another truce in 1000.
He conducted a campaign against the Khazar Khaganate that gained the Byzantine Empire part of Crimea and a series of successful campaigns against the Kingdom of Georgia. Despite near-constant warfare, Basil distinguished himself as an administrator, reducing the power of the great land-owning families who dominated the Empire's administration and military and filling its treasury, he left the Empire with its greatest expanse in four centuries. Although his successors were incapable rulers, the Empire flourished for decades after Basil's death. One of the most important decisions taken during his reign was to offer the hand of his sister Anna Porphyrogenita to Vladimir I of Kiev in exchange for military support, thus forming the Byzantine military unit known as the Varangian Guard; the marriage of Anna and Vladimir led to the Christianization of the Kievan Rus' and the incorporation of successor nations of Kievan Rus' within the Byzantine cultural and religious tradition. Basil is seen as a Greek national hero but as a despised figure among Bulgarians.
The courtier and historian Michael Psellos, born towards the end of Basil's reign, gives a description of Basil in his Chronographia. Psellos describes him as a stocky man of shorter-than-average stature, an impressive figure on horseback, he had light-blue eyes arched eyebrows, luxuriant sidewhiskers—which he had a habit of rolling between his fingers when deep in thought or angry—and in life a scant beard. Psellos states that Basil was not an articulate speaker and had a loud laugh that convulsed his whole frame. Basil is described as having ascetic tastes and caring little for the pomp and ceremony of the Imperial court wearing a sombre, dark-purple robe furnished with few of the gems that decorated imperial costumes, he is described as a capable administrator who left a well-stocked treasury upon his death. Basil despised literary culture and affected scorn for the learned classes of Byzantium. According to the 19th century historian George Finlay, Basil saw himself as "prudent and devout.
For Greek learning he cared little, he was a type of the higher Byzantine moral character, which retained far more of its Roman than its Greek origin". The modern historian John Julius Norwich wrote of Basil, and it is hardly surprising: Basil was ugly, coarse, boorish and pathologically mean. He was in short un-Byzantine, he cared only for the greatness of his Empire. No wonder that in his hands it reached its apogee". Basil II was born c. 958. He was a porphyrogennetos, as were his father Romanos II and his paternal grandfather Constantine VII. Basil was the eldest son of Romanos and his Laconian Greek second wife Theophano, the daughter of a poor tavern-keeper named Krateros and may have originated from the city of Sparta, he may have had an elder sister named Helena. Romanos succeeded Constantine VII as sole emperor upon the latter's death in 959. Basil's father crowned him as co-emperor on 22 April 960, his brother Constantine in 962 or 963. Only two days after the birth of his youngest child Anna, Romanos II died on 15 March 963 at 24 years of age.
His unexpected death was thought at the time to be the result of poisoning with hemlock. Basil and Constantine were too young to rule in their own right when Romanos died in 963. Therefore, although the Byzantine Senate confirmed them as emperors with their mother as the nominal regent, de facto power passed for the time into the hands of the parakoimomenos Joseph Bringas. Theophano did not trust Bringas and another enemy of the powerful parakoimomenos was Basil Lekapenos, an illegitimate, eunuch son of Emperor Romanos I – Basil's great-grandfather. Lekapenos himself had been parakoimomenos to Constantine VII and megas baioulos to Romanos II, yet another enemy of Bringas was the successful and popular gene
Constantine X Doukas
Constantine X Doukas or Dukas, Latinised as Ducas was Byzantine Emperor from 1059 to 1067. He was the founder and first ruling member of the short-lived Doukid dynasty. During his reign, the Normans took over much of the remaining Byzantine territories in Italy while in the Balkans the Hungarians occupied Belgrade, he suffered defeats against the Seljuk sultan Alp Arslan. Constantine Doukas was the son of Andronikos Doukas, a Paphlagonian Greek nobleman who may have served as governor of the theme of Moesia. Addicted to endless debates about philosophy and theology, Constantine gained influence after he married, as his second wife, Eudokia Makrembolitissa, a niece of Patriarch Michael Keroularios. In 1057, Constantine supported the usurpation of Isaac I Komnenos siding with the court bureaucracy against the new emperor's reforms. In spite of this tacit opposition, Constantine was chosen as successor by the ailing Isaac in November 1059, under the influence of Michael Psellos. Isaac abdicated, on 24 November 1059, Constantine X Doukas was crowned emperor.
The new emperor associated two of his young sons in power, Michael VII Doukas and Konstantios Doukas, appointed his brother John Doukas as kaisar, embarked on a policy favorable to the interests of the court bureaucracy and the church. Undercutting the training and financial support for the armed forces, Constantine X fatally weakened Byzantine defences by disbanding the Armenian local militia of 50,000 men at a crucial point of time, coinciding with the westward advance of the Seljuk Turks and their Turcoman allies. Undoing many of the necessary reforms of Isaac I Komnenos, he bloated the military bureaucracy with paid court officials and crowded the Senate with his supporters, his decisions to replace standing soldiers with mercenaries and leaving the frontier fortifications unrepaired led Constantine to become unpopular with the supporters of Isaac within the military aristocracy, who attempted to assassinate him in 1061. He became unpopular with the general population after he raised taxes to try to pay the army.
Constantine lost most of Byzantine Italy to the Normans under Robert Guiscard, except for the territory around Bari, though a resurgence of interest in retaining Apulia occurred under his reign, he appointed at least four catepans of Italy: Miriarch, Maruli and Mabrica. He suffered invasions by Alp Arslan in Asia Minor in 1064, resulting in the loss of the Armenian capital, by the Oghuz Turks in the Balkans in 1065, while Belgrade was lost to the Hungarians. Old and unhealthy when he came to power, Constantine died on 22 May 1067, his final act was to demand that only his sons succeed him, forcing his wife Eudokia Makrembolitissa to take a vow not to remarry. By his first wife, a daughter of Constantine Dalassenos, Constantine X Doukas had no known children. By his second wife, Eudokia Makrembolitissa, he had the following issue: Michael VII Doukas, who succeeded as emperor. Andronikos Doukas, co-emperor from 1068 to 1078. Konstantios Doukas, co-emperor from c. 1060 to 1078, died 1081. Anna Doukaina, a nun Theodora Anna Doukaina, who married Domenico Selvo, Doge of Venice.
Zoe Doukaina, who married Adrianos Komnenos, a brother of Emperor Alexios I Komnenos. List of Byzantine emperors Finlay, History of the Byzantine and Greek Empires from 1057–1453, 2, William Blackwood & Sons Kazhdan, Alexander, ed. Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium, I, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-504652-6 Norwich, John Julius, Byzantium: The Apogee, Penguin, ISBN 0-14-011448-3 Polemis, Demetrios I; the Doukai: A Contribution to Byzantine Prosopography, London: Athlone Press Psellus, Chronographia Coins of Constantine X Doukas
Christianity is an Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, as described in the New Testament. Its adherents, known as Christians, believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and savior of all people, whose coming as the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament. Depending on the specific denomination of Christianity, practices may include baptism, prayer, confirmation, burial rites, marriage rites and the religious education of children. Most denominations hold regular group worship services. Christianity developed during the 1st century CE as a Jewish Christian sect of Second Temple Judaism, it soon attracted Gentile God-fearers, which lead to a departure from Jewish customs, the establishment of Christianity as an independent religion. During the first centuries of its existence Christianity spread throughout the Roman Empire, to Ethiopia and some parts of Asia. Constantine the Great decriminalized it via the Edict of Milan; the First Council of Nicaea established a uniform set of beliefs across the Roman Empire.
By 380, the Roman Empire designated Christianity as the state religion. The period of the first seven ecumenical councils is sometimes referred to as the Great Church, the united full communion of the Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodoxy, before their schisms. Oriental Orthodoxy split after the Council of Chalcedon over differences in Christology; the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church separated in the East–West Schism over the authority of the Pope. In 1521, Protestants split from the Catholic Church in the Protestant Reformation over Papal primacy, the nature of salvation, other ecclesiological and theological disputes. Following the Age of Discovery, Christianity was spread into the Americas, sub-Saharan Africa, the rest of the world via missionary work and colonization. There are 2.3 billion Christians in the world, or 31.4% of the global population. Today, the four largest branches of Christianity are the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church and Oriental Orthodoxy.
Christianity and Christian ethics have played a prominent role in the development of Western civilization around Europe during late antiquity and the Middle Ages. In the New Testament, the names by which the disciples were known among themselves were "brethren", "the faithful", "elect", "saints" and "believers". Early Jewish Christians referred to themselves as'The Way' coming from Isaiah 40:3, "prepare the way of the Lord." According to Acts 11:26, the term "Christian" was first used in reference to Jesus's disciples in the city of Antioch, meaning "followers of Christ," by the non-Jewish inhabitants of Antioch. The earliest recorded use of the term "Christianity" was by Ignatius of Antioch, in around 100 AD. While Christians worldwide share basic convcitions, there are differences of interpretations and opinions of the Bible and sacred traditions on which Christianity is based. Concise doctrinal statements or confessions of religious beliefs are known as creeds, they began as baptismal formulae and were expanded during the Christological controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries to become statements of faith.
The Apostles' Creed is the most accepted statement of the articles of Christian faith. It is used by a number of Christian denominations for both liturgical and catechetical purposes, most visibly by liturgical churches of Western Christian tradition, including the Latin Church of the Catholic Church, Lutheranism and Western Rite Orthodoxy, it is used by Presbyterians and Congregationalists. This particular creed was developed between the 9th centuries, its central doctrines are those of God the Creator. Each of the doctrines found in this creed can be traced to statements current in the apostolic period; the creed was used as a summary of Christian doctrine for baptismal candidates in the churches of Rome. Its main points include: Belief in God the Father, Jesus Christ as the Son of God, the Holy Spirit The death, descent into hell and ascension of Christ The holiness of the Church and the communion of saints Christ's second coming, the Day of Judgement and salvation of the faithful; the Nicene Creed was formulated in response to Arianism, at the Councils of Nicaea and Constantinople in 325 and 381 and ratified as the universal creed of Christendom by the First Council of Ephesus in 431.
The Chalcedonian Definition, or Creed of Chalcedon, developed at the Council of Chalcedon in 451, though rejected by the Oriental Orthodox churches, taught Christ "to be acknowledged in two natures, unchangeably, inseparably": one divine and one human, that both natures, while perfect in themselves, are also united into one person. The Athanasian Creed, received in the Western Church as having the same status as the Nicene and Chalcedonian, says: "We worship one God in Trinity, Trinity in Unity. Many evangelical Protestants reject creeds as definitive statements of faith while agreeing with some or all of the substance of the creeds. Most Baptists do not use creeds "in that they have not sought to establish binding
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner is the longest major poem by the English poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge, written in 1797–98 and published in 1798 in the first edition of Lyrical Ballads. Some modern editions use a revised version printed in 1817. Along with other poems in Lyrical Ballads, it is considered a signal shift to modern poetry and the beginning of British Romantic literature; the Rime of the Ancient Mariner relates the experiences of a sailor who has returned from a long sea voyage. The mariner stops a man, on his way to a wedding ceremony and begins to narrate a story; the wedding-guest's reaction turns from bemusement to impatience to fear to fascination as the mariner's story progresses, as can be seen in the language style: Coleridge uses narrative techniques such as personification and repetition to create a sense of danger, the supernatural, or serenity, depending on the mood in different parts of the poem. The mariner's tale begins with his ship departing on its journey. Despite initial good fortune, the ship is driven south by a storm and reaches Antarctic waters.
An albatross appears and leads them out of the ice jam where they are stuck, but as the albatross is praised by the ship's crew, the mariner shoots the bird: The crew is angry with the mariner, believing the albatross brought the south wind that led them out of the Antarctic. However, the sailors change their minds when the weather becomes warmer and the mist disappears: They soon find that they made a grave mistake in supporting this crime, as it arouses the wrath of spirits who pursue the ship "from the land of mist and snow"; the sailors blame the mariner for the torment of their thirst. In anger, the crew forces the mariner to wear the dead albatross about his neck to illustrate the burden he must suffer from killing it, or as a sign of regret: Eventually, the ship encounters a ghostly hulk. On board are Death and the "Night-mare Life-in-Death", a deathly-pale woman, who are playing dice for the souls of the crew. With a roll of the dice, Death wins the lives of the crew members and Life-in-Death the life of the mariner, a prize she considers more valuable.
Her name is a clue to the mariner's fate: he will endure a fate worse than death as punishment for his killing of the albatross. One by one, all of the crew members die, but the mariner lives on, seeing for seven days and nights the curse in the eyes of the crew's corpses, whose last expressions remain upon their faces; this stage of the mariner's curse is lifted after he appreciates the sea creatures swimming in the water. Despite his cursing them as "slimy things" earlier in the poem, he sees their true beauty and blesses them; the bodies of the crew, possessed by good spirits, help steer the ship. In a trance, the mariner hears two spirits discussing his voyage and penance, learns that the ship is being powered supernaturally: Finally the mariner comes in sight of his homeland, but is uncertain as to whether or not he is hallucinating; the rotten remains of the ship sink in a whirlpool. A hermit on the mainland had seen the approaching ship and had come to meet it with a pilot and his boy, in a boat.
When they pull him from the water, they think he is dead, but when he opens his mouth, the pilot has a fit. The hermit prays, the mariner picks up the oars to row; the pilot's boy goes crazy and laughs, thinking the mariner is the devil, cries, "The Devil knows how to row". As penance for shooting the albatross, the mariner, driven by guilt, is forced to wander the earth, telling his story over and over, teaching a lesson to those he meets: After relaying the story, the mariner leaves, the wedding guest returns home, wakes the next morning "a sadder and a wiser man"; the poem received mixed reviews from critics, Coleridge was once told by the publisher that most of the book's sales were to sailors who thought it was a naval songbook. Coleridge made several modifications to the poem over the years. In the second edition of Lyrical Ballads, published in 1800, he replaced many of the archaic words; the poem may have been inspired by James Cook's second voyage of exploration of the South Seas and the Pacific Ocean.
On this second voyage Cook crossed three times into the Antarctic Circle to determine whether the fabled great southern continent existed. Critics have suggested that the poem may have been inspired by the voyage of Thomas James into the Arctic. According to William Wordsworth, the poem was inspired while Coleridge and Wordsworth's sister Dorothy were on a walking tour through the Quantock Hills in Somerset; the discussion had turned to a book that Wordsworth was reading, A Voyage Round The World by Way of the Great South Sea by Captain George Shelvocke. In the book, a melancholy sailor, Simon Hatley, shoots a black albatross: We all observed, that we had not the sight of one fish of any kind, since we were come to the Southward of the streights of le Mair, nor one sea-bird, except a disconsolate black Albatross, who accompanied us for several days... till Hattley, observing, in one of his melancholy fits, that this bird was always hovering near us, imagin'd, from his colour, that it might be some ill omen