the main character in the poem The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. The Ancient Mariner is an old sailor who shoots and kills an albatross (=a very large sea bird). The other sailors think that this will bring them bad luck, and they force him to wear the dead albatross on a rope around his neck so that they will not be punished for his crime. But all the sailors die, and the Ancient Mariner feels guilty and believes he must tell his story to anyone who will listen, to warn them to be kind to all creatures.
Definition from the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English Advanced Learner's Dictionary.
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