[ kuh-lahy-duh-skohp ]
/ kəˈlaɪ dəˌskoʊp /


an optical instrument in which bits of glass, held loosely at the end of a rotating tube, are shown in continually changing symmetrical forms by reflection in two or more mirrors set at angles to each other.
a continually changing pattern of shapes and colors.
a continually shifting pattern, scene, or the like: The 1920s were a kaleidoscope of fads and fashions.

Words nearby kaleidoscope

Origin of kaleidoscope

1817; < Greek kal(ós) beautiful + eîdo(s) shape + -scope
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for kaleidoscope

British Dictionary definitions for kaleidoscope

/ (kəˈlaɪdəˌskəʊp) /


an optical toy for producing symmetrical patterns by multiple reflections in inclined mirrors enclosed in a tube. Loose pieces of coloured glass, paper, etc, are placed between transparent plates at the far end of the tube, which is rotated to change the pattern
any complex pattern of frequently changing shapes and colours
a complicated set of circumstances

Derived forms of kaleidoscope

kaleidoscopic (kəˌlaɪdəˈskɒpɪk), adjectivekaleidoscopically, adverb

Word Origin for kaleidoscope

C19: from Greek kalos beautiful + eidos form + -scope
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012