Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Kubla Khan

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Probably composed during the second half of 1797, Coleridge’s famous poem “Kubla Khan” was not published until 1816, when it appeared in a slim volume entitled

Christabel; Kubla Khan, a Vision; The Pains of Sleep

. Although Coleridge describes “Kubla Khan” in his apologetic preface of 1816 as a mere “psychological curiosity”, the poem is widely celebrated as a poetic

tour de force

and a complex investigation of the psychology of creativity and inspiration. But obviously Coleridge was uncomfortable with publishing the poem and withheld it from the public for almost 20 years, sharing it with only a select few fellow writers and then most often in recitation. Coleridge enjoyed performing the poem for other poets who he felt might appreciate its eccentricities, chanting it to…

5032 words

Citation: Robinson, Daniel. "Kubla Khan". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 19 January 2010 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=23056, accessed 05 March 2024.]

23056 Kubla Khan 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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