"Kubla Khan" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Learning this word list will help you better understand Samuel Taylor Coleridge's 1797 poem "Kubla Khan," a fantastical vision of a foreign world and a tribute to the power of the poet's imagination.

The full text of the poem is available here.

Activities for this list:

definitions & notes only words
  1. stately
    impressive in appearance
    A stately pleasure-dome decree:
  2. decree
    issue an authoritative order
    A stately pleasure-dome decree:
  3. cavern
    a large cave or a large chamber in a cave
    Through caverns measureless to man
  4. sinuous
    curved or curving in and out
    And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
  5. chasm
    a deep opening in the earth's surface
    But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
  6. turmoil
    a violent disturbance
    And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
  7. seething
    in constant agitation
    And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
  8. meander
    move or cause to move in a sinuous or circular course
    Five miles meandering with a mazy motion
  9. prophesy
    predict or reveal, as if through divine inspiration
    Ancestral voices prophesying war!
  10. damsel
    a young unmarried woman
    A damsel with a dulcimer
  11. dulcimer
    a trapezoidal zither whose strings are struck with hammers
    A damsel with a dulcimer
  12. beware
    be on one's guard; be cautious or wary about; be alert to
    And all should cry, Beware!
  13. thrice
    three times
    Weave a circle round him thrice,
  14. vision
    a mystical experience of a supernatural appearance
    Or, a vision in a dream.
  15. waning
    of the period when the visible surface of the moon decreases
    As e’er beneath a waning moon was haunted

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