Goth when it really meant something, or something — flipping through a French-language collection of Gustave Dore’s work, part biography and part sampling of his many efforts, led me to conclude I really need to find a good English language equivalent at some point. One of the treasures of my high school days was the purchase of Dover’s cheap and great reprinting of Dore’s edition of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, which I recommend to anyone and everyone unreservedly. It’s so complete in its evocation of something strange and distant — much like what Coleridge was doing himself, of course — as to be a self-contained masterwork. Even if I had seen nothing else by him — the Dante illustrations, Shakespeare, Cervantes, Milton, the Bible and more — this would have been enough to ensure I’d always remember his name. Heck, just take a look at the cover.

And of course the Sisters of Mercy borrowed one of the Dante illustrations for an early single:

So he HAD to be great. Though I’m glad I discovered Dore first.