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Poetry terms and definitions
a patterned form of verbal or written expression of ideas in concentrated, imaginative, and rhythmical patterns
the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables established in a line of poetry
a unit of meter; can have two or three syllables; generally one stressed and one or more unstressed syllables
a two syllable foot with the stress on the second syllable; most common type of foot in English
a foot consisting of a stressed syllable followed by an unstressed syllable
a three syllable foot with the stress on the last syllable
a three syllable foot with the stress on the first syllable
types of metrical feet
iambic, trochaic, anapestic, dactylic, spondaic, pyrrhic
a foot consisting of two stressed syllables; used for variation
a rare type of foot consisting of two unstressed syllables found interspersed with other feet
one foot line
two foot line
three foot line
four foot line
five foot line
six foot line
seven foot line
eight foot line
verse forms
rhymed, blank, and free
rhymed verse
consists of verse with end rhyme and usually with a regular meter
blank verse
verse consisting of lines of iambic pentameter without end rhyme
free verse
verse consisting lines that do not rhyme, do not have a regular meter, and do not contain rhyme
the similarity or likeness of sound existing between two words
position of rhyme
this can be end ____ or internal ____
end rhyme
the similarity occuring at the end of two or more lines of verse
internal rhyme
consists of the similarity occuring between two or more words in the same line of verse
kinds of rhyme
masculine, feminine or double, and triple
masculine rhyme
occurs when one syllable of a word rhymes with another word
feminine/double rhyme
occurs when the last two syllables of a word rhyme with another word
triple rhyme
occurs when the last three syllables of a word or line rhyme
rhyme scheme
the pattern or sequence in which rhyme occurs
the repetition of the initial letter or sound in two or more words in a line of verse
the use of a word to represent or imitate natural sounds; buzz, crunch, tinkle, gurgle, sizzle, hiss
the similarity or repetition of a vowel sound in two or more words
the repetition of consonant sounds within a line of verse
the repetition of one or more phrases or lines at intervals in a poem, usually at the end of a stanza
the reiterating of a word or phrase within a poem
figure of speech
an expression in which the words are used in a nonliteral sense to present a figure, picture, or image
kinds of figures of speech
simile, metaphor, personification, synecdoche, metonymy, hyperbole, litotes, antithesis, apostrophe, symbol
a direct or explicit comparison between two usually unrelated things indicating a likeness or similarity between some attribute found in both things using the words "like" or "as"
an implied comparison between two usually unrelateds things indicating a likeness or analogy between attributes found in both things without using the words "like" or "as"
the giving of human characteristics to inanimate objects, ideas, or animals
the technique of mentioning a part of something to represent the whole
the substitution of a word naming an object for another word closely associtated with it
an exaggeration for the sake of emphasis and is not to be taken litrerally
an understatement and is achieved by saying the opposite of what one means or by making an affirmation by stating the fact in the negative
a balancing or contrasting of one term against another
the addressing of someone or something, usually not present, as though present
a word or image that signifies something other that what is literally represented
a division of a poem based in thought or form
kinds of stanzas
couplet, triplet, quatrain, quintet, sestet, septet, octave
two lines of verse that rhyme a-a
also known as tercet, is a three line stanza or three lines of verse within a larger unit that usually rhymes a-a-a
consists of four rhymes lines, most common stanza form in English
a five line stanza that may have any of several rhyme schemes
a six line stanza sometimes used to refer to the last six lines of a sonnet
a seven line stanza
an eight line stanza that is often used to refer to the first eight lines of a sonnet
heroic couplet
consists of two successive rhyming verses that contain a complete thought within the two lines
terza rima
a three-line stanza form with an interlaced or interwoven rhyme scheme: a-b-a, b-c-b, c-d-c, d-e-d, etc.
a five line nonsense poem with an anapestic meter; the rhyme scheme is usually a-a-b-b-a; the first, second, and fifth lines have three stresses and the third and fourth lines have two stresses
ballad stanza
consists of two lines with a rhyme scheme of a-b-c-b; the first and third lines are tetrameter and the second and fourth lines are trimeter
rime royal
a stanza consisting of seven lines in iambic pentameter rhyming a-b-a-b-b-c-c
ottava rima
consists of eight iambic pentameter lines with a rhyme scheme of a-b-a-b-a-b-c-c
spenserian stanza
a nine line stanza consisting of eight iambic pentameter lines followed by an alexandrine, a line of iambic hexameter
a fourteen line stanza form consisting of iambic pentameter lines
Italian sonnet
also known as pertrarchan; a fourteen line stanza form consisting of an octave and a sestet
English sonnet
also known as Shakespearean; a fourteen line stanza consisting of three quatrains and a couplet; the rhyme scheme is abab cdcd efef gg