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This Lime-Tree Bower My Prison

This Lime-Tree Bower My Prison


by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Analysis: Brain Snacks

Brain Snacks: Tasty Tidbits of Knowledge

Coleridge sent this poem in a letter to his friend and fellow poet Robert Southey. At one point, Coleridge and Southey had planned to flee to America and start a utopian society on the banks of the Susquehanna River based on the principle of "Pantisocracy," or "government by all." (Source)

Coleridge's life was filled with almost as much drama as Charles Lamb's. Coleridge developed an opium addiction (back when people didn't realize just how dangerous opium was), and he had some kind of vague affair with William Wordsworth's sister-in-law. (Source)

The "accident" referred to in the poem's epigraph was the dropping of hot milk on Coleridge's foot, possibly by his wife. In fact, Coleridge's marriage later turned into a total disaster. One writer described it as "hellish," and blamed Coleridge's "fecklessness that approached heartlessness." Ouch! (Source)

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