View synonyms for poet laureate

poet laureate


, plural poets laureate.
  1. (in Great Britain) a poet appointed for life as an officer of the royal household, formerly expected to write poems in celebration of court and national events.
  2. a poet recognized or acclaimed as the most eminent or representative of a country or locality.
  3. (formerly) a poet whose efforts were officially recognized, as by a sovereign, university, etc.

poet laureate


  1. the poet appointed as court poet of Britain who is given a post as an officer of the Royal Household. The first was Ben Jonson in 1616

poet laureate

  1. The national poet in Britain . Historically, the poet laureate's duty has been to compose official poetry for the king's or queen's birthday and for great public occasions, such as victories in war, coronations, and births and weddings in the royal family. The poets laureate of Britain have included Geoffrey Chaucer , William Wordsworth , and Alfred, Lord Tennyson .

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The largely ceremonial position of poet laureate was created in the United States in 1985.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of poet laureate1

Middle English word dating back to 1350–1400

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Example Sentences

Nemerov is connected to Greenberg through his father, the poet Howard Nemerov, a lion of mid-century American culture who served two terms as the country’s poet laureate.

This year, we’ll be hanging on the every word of a poet laureate, for the first time in football history.

Former poet laureate Robert Pinsky remembers how funny his friend could be.

At his side, volunteering to help the wounded, is the poet laureate of the American Civil War himself, Walt Whitman.

In 2011 the judges came under fire for a shortlist many, including the former poet laureate Andrew Motion, deemed too “readable.”

For the celebration, former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins was commissioned to write an ode to the monument.

News of the World by our new poet laureate, Philip Levine, makes you think about what unites us and what our common purpose is.

At the Floral Games he who is crowned poet-laureate chooses the Queen, and she crowns him with a wreath of olive leaves.

Robert Bridges, the present poet-laureate, also deserves especial mention.

After the death of his friend Southey, the mantle of the Poet Laureate fell upon him.

She would have spoken in the same way to prince or poet-laureate, and would have pleased either as much as the blacksmith.

"To America," included by permission of the Poet Laureate, is a good poem and a great poem.


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More About Poet Laureate

What is a poet laureate?

Poet laureate is a title given to a poet in recognition of their poetry. The title originated in Great Britain but in modern times, countries, states, cities, and similar places, including Tribal nations, name poet laureates.

Great Britain’s poet laureate holds the title for the remainder of their life and there is only one poet laureate at a time. They are an officer of the royal family of Great Britain, receiving a salary, although in modern times they no longer have official duties.

The poet laureate of the United States is appointed by the Librarian of Congress and serves a one-year term, promoting poetry nationally. All but five US states have state poets laureate and many cities honor poets this way as well.

Example: The city’s poet laureate has been covering the local unrest in her series of freeform poems.

Where does poet laureate come from?

The first records of the term poet laureate come from the mid-1300s. It combines the word poet, meaning “a person who creates poetry,” and laureate, meaning “a person honored for distinction in a field.”

The first official poet laureate of Great Britain, Ben Jonson, was appointed in 1616. Formerly, poet laureates were expected to write poetry for birthdays or anniversaries of members of the royal family, but Queen Victoria ended that practice in 1843, when she appointed William Wordsworth as poet laureate.

Other notable poet laureates include Geoffrey Chaucer in Great Britain and Robert Frost and Gwendolyn Brooks in the US.

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What are some other forms related to poet laureate?

  • poets laureate (plural)

What are some words that share a root or word element with poet laureate?

What are some words that often get used in discussing poet laureate?

How is poet laureate used in real life?

Poet laureate most often is used to refer to an appointed position.


Try using poet laureate!

True or False?

The poet laureate for the United States serves for four years.

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