Gustave Doré

"It flung the blood into my head": Illustration to Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"

1875
The curse has lifted and the ship suddenly lunges forward, propelled by mysterious forces with such unexpected violence that the Ancient Mariner is knocked down and falls into a trance. When he awakes, the vessel is heading back to port. Coleridge’s incredible tale of the sailor’s ill-fated voyage deals with many of the themes that intrigued Doré throughout his life: pride, suffering, isolation, redemption, chance, fate and the fantastic. His haunting illustrations, which exploit the chiaroscuro effects of wood engraving, likely did much to popularize what was deemed a rather impenetrable poem, written in a highly archaic language.
Title
"It flung the blood into my head": Illustration to Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"
Date
1875
Medium
Drawing
Materials
black and brown ink with opaque white over graphite on beige wove paper
Dimensions
51 x 39.8 cm; image: 50.5 x 39.3 cm
Nationality
French
Credit line
Purchased 2014
Accession number
46305