The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

What is the relationship between the bird and the mariners at the beginning of the story?


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The Albatross personifies the natural world. At times the natural world seems to be a character itself, (the bird representing it at the beginning) based on the way it interacts with the Ancient Mariner. From the moment the Ancient Mariner offends the spirit of the "rime," (by killing the bird) retribution comes in the form of natural phenomena. The wind dies, the sun intensifies, and it will not rain. The ocean becomes revolting, "rotting" and thrashing with "slimy" creatures and sizzling with strange fires.