Graham Barwell


oleridge was a regular companion. Emigrants’ diaries and journals rarely failed to describe one particular landmark experience: the first sighting of the albatross, followed by attempts to kill or capture a specimen, in the style of the Ancient Mariner. ‘Who could doubt their supernatural attributes? Certainly not a spirit-chilled landswoman, with Coleridge’s magic legend perpetually repeating itself to her’, wrote 27-year-old Luisa [sic] Meredith, arriving in Sydney in 1839. (Lyons 13)1



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