Word of the Day


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Liz Potter
Written by Liz Potter


someone who writes poetry

View the full definition in the Macmillan Dictionary.

Origin and usage

The noun poet is a borrowing from French and Latin. It was first used in English in the 14th century.


Poet comes from the Latin ‘poeta’ and the French ‘poete’ (the word was originally written without an accent on the ‘e’). Yesterday was the 250th anniversary of the birth of the great English poet William Wordsworth. Generally regarded as the founder, along with his friend Samuel Taylor Coleridge, of the Romantic school of English poetry, Wordsworth is closely associated with the Lake District. He was born on the edge of this area of hills, mountains and lakes in north-west England and returned to live there in 1799. The landscapes of the Lakes were a source of inspiration to the poet throughout his life and feature in many of his best-known poems.


“We poets in our youth begin in gladness; but thereof comes in the end despondency and madness.”
(William Wordsworth, Resolution and Independence)

“Oh! many are the poets that are sown By Nature; men endowed with highest gifts, The vision and the faculty divine.”
(William Wordsworth, The Excursion)

Related words

bard, rhyme, scan, verse

Browse related words in the Macmillan Thesaurus.

About the author

Liz Potter

Liz Potter

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