poet laureate

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poet laureate (plural poets laureate or poet laureates)

  1. A poet officially appointed by a government, often expected to compose poems for state occasions and other government events
  2. (obsolete) One who received an honorable degree in grammar, including poetry and rhetoric, at the English universities; -- so called as being presented with a wreath of laurel
  3. (Britain) Formerly, an officer of the king's household, whose business was to compose an ode annually for the king's birthday, and other suitable occasions; now, a poet officially distinguished by such honorary title, the office being a sinecure. It is said this title was first given in the time of Edward IV