Definition of poet in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpōət/


1A person who writes poems.
Example sentences
  • The radio play became an art form in its own right and attracted novelists and poets as well as dramatists.
  • The two are linked by Heinrich Heine, the German poet whose writing spawned them.
  • I'm tempted to say that we have a good number of poets who can write but cannot read.
literary bard
derogatory poetaster
historical troubadour, balladeer
1.1A person possessing special powers of imagination or expression.
Example sentences
  • And those who translate such works into English today tend to be academics rather than poets.
  • The story of this disaster was developed by the imagination of numerous poets.


Middle English: from Old French poete, via Latin from Greek poētēs, variant of poiētēs 'maker, poet', from poiein 'create'.

  • A poet is literally ‘a maker’, a term that was also used to mean a poet in the Middle Ages, coming from Greek poētēs, ‘maker, poet’. When someone experiences a fitting or deserved retribution for their actions, you can say that it is poetic justice. Alexander Pope used the phrase in his satire The Dunciad (1742), where he depicts ‘Poetic Justice, with her lifted scale’. See also laurel

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: po·et

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