Definition of kaleidoscope in English:

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Pronunciation: /kəˈlīdəˌskōp/


1A toy consisting of a tube containing mirrors and pieces of colored glass or paper, whose reflections produce changing patterns that are visible through an eyehole when the tube is rotated.
Example sentences
  • The three mirrors in the kaleidoscope are what provides the dance of ministry pieces and programs.
  • Right now she's attempting to make a kaleidoscope from an empty toilet paper tube, beads, rubber bands, some wax paper and Saran wrap.
  • Our projects will include building kaleidoscopes and telescopes, experimenting with UV and IR light, and arranging mirrors so that a laser shines on a predetermined spot.
1.1A constantly changing pattern or sequence of objects or elements: the dancers moved in a kaleidoscope of color
More example sentences
  • They're a kaleidoscope of colors ranging from pastel tints to vibrant blues, greens, reds, purples, jades, and buffs in a wide variety of shades.
  • You present a sliver, a little glass piece of the kaleidoscope, a tiny little prism, in which you may see the greater war, but you may not.
  • Up to this point, the only material to have been discussed has been rock crystal, but the rock crystal pieces were complemented by a positive kaleidoscope of coloured hardstones.


Early 19th century: from Greek kalos 'beautiful' + eidos 'form' + -scope.

  • Sir David Brewster, the 19th-century inventor of the kaleidoscope, also coined the name for his invention. It is made up of elements from the Greek words kalos ‘beautiful’, eidos ‘form’, and skopein ‘to look at’, also the root of scope (mid 16th century).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ka·lei·do·scope

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