Wednesday 30 December 2009

ABC Wednesday X is for Xanadu

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan

A stately pleasure-dome decree

Where Alph, the sacred river, ran

Through caverns measureless to man

Down to a sunless sea.

Extract from 'Kubla Khan' written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) and published in 1816

Xanadu, previously known as Kai Ping, was the summer capital of the Yuan Dynasty. The Mongolian Yuan Dynasty was founded in 1271 by Kublai Khan, grandson of Gengis Khan. It ruled China from 1279 to 1368. Emperor Kublai Khan made Dadu, present-day Beijing, the capital of his empire, but the summer heat and humidity of the city persuaded him to establish an alternative capital closer to the cooler plains of his native Mongolia.

Xanadu first came to the notice of the Western world after Marco Polo visited the city in 1275. It was portrayed by him and later by Coleridge as exotic, mysterious and filled with riches.
Thank you to Denise Nesbitt for her hard work in organising and hosting this meme.
Click here to see what others have found for X.


  1. Ah, great minds think alike! Great post for the X day! Wishing you a very Happy New Year!


  2. Ah, a Xanadu post after reading a post about the movie Xanadu. Cool.

  3. Love that poem! Great choice and informative as well.

  4. Xcellent Xanadu! Interesting, indeed. Happy New Year!

  5. I've never read that poem, and yet I could quote you that verse. It's amazing what you pick up here and there, isn't it? I suppose the 'caverns measureless to man' caught my imagination.

    Good post for X - I never knew much about Xanadu.

  6. Just think! I always thought Olivia Newton John invented the name! (Not really!)

  7. Sylvia - thank you! *wink*
    Roger - happy to oblige :-)
    Kate - I'd never really thought about where Xanadu was before this!
    Tumblewords - my thanks to you.
    Jay - I know exactly what you mean.
    Rinkly - LOL!!
    ellen - thank you!

  8. I'm new to your blog, Jabblog and interested in your random musings and rants.

    It's good to read about things I knew nothing about, including Xanadu. I only the know the words of a few songs that include it. Isn't there one in Olivia Newton John's repertoire?.

    Best wishes for the new year. I look forward to more from you.

  9. Hi Elisabeth and welcome :-)
    I like learning from other people so find blogging very interesting. You're right about Olivia Newton John.


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