albatross around one’s neck
An annoying burden: “That old car is an albatross around my neck.” Literally, an albatross is a large sea bird. The phrase alludes to Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” in which a sailor who shoots a friendly albatross is forced to wear its carcass around his neck as punishment.
A heavy burden of guilt that becomes an obstacle to success, as in The failed real estate scheme became an albatross around her neck, for now she could not interest other investors in a new project. This idiom comes from Samuel Coleridge’s narrative poem, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (1798), which is based on the widespread superstition that it is unlucky to kill this large white sea bird. In the poem a sailor does kill an albatross, and when the ship then is becalmed near the equator and runs out of water, his shipmates blame him and force him to wear the dead bird around his neck.
former name of . Historical Examples Near the volcano of Mayon are the sulphur springs of Albay, noted for their wonderful medicinal properties. The Philippine Islands Ramon Reyes Lala Albay Province is still the leading hemp district in the Islands. The Philippine Islands John Foreman The troubles in Albay ended with the surrender of Ola […]
Astronomy. the ratio of the light reflected by a planet or satellite to that received by it. Meteorology. such a ratio for any part of the earth’s surface or atmosphere. the white, inner rind of a citrus fruit. Historical Examples The asteroid’s efficiency in reflecting sunlight was its albedo. Rip Foster in Ride the Gray […]
an instrument that measures the of a surface.
Edward, born 1928, U.S. playwright. Contemporary Examples As always in Albee, the play features family turmoil and a good dose of alcohol. Fall Broadway Preview: ‘This Is Our Youth,’ Bradley Cooper as ‘The Elephant Man,’ and More Janice Kaplan September 10, 2014 The Regent movie theater, Albee Square Mall, and [record store] Beat Street are […]