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Define meter and its types

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When rhythm is regular, it is often called meter. Each verse is made up
of a number of metrical feet. Use a pair of terms to describe a line of
verse: first, an adjective for the basic kind of foot. Typical feet
include iambs (the most common in English poetry), trochees, and
spondees. Less common are dactyls, anapests, and amphibrachs.

The second term gives the number of feet in each line. The most common
in English are pentameter (five beats per verse) and tetrameter (four
beats per verse); other possibilities are monometer, dimeter, trimeter,
and hexameter.

No meter is perfectly regular. Apart from the theoretical problem that
no two syllables will receive precisely the same stress, most poets
(even the most apparently regular) try to vary their verse by
introducing occasional metrical substitutions.

Definition of Rising Meter Literary Term

How do you define Rising Meter Literary Term? What is the definition of
Rising Meter Literary Term?

The definition of Rising Meter Literary Term is as follows:

Definition of Rising Meter Literary Term

Anapaestic and Iambic meters are called rising meters because they move
from an unstressed syllable to a stressed syllable.

The meter in poetry involves exact arrangements of syllables into
repeated patterns called feet within a line. Meters are regularized
rhythms. an arrangement of language in which the accents occur at
apparently equal intervals in time. Each repeated unit of meter is
called a foot.

The number of metrical feet in a line are described as follows:

Dimeter — two feet

Trimeter — three feet

Tetrameter — four feet

Pentameter — five feet

Hexameter — six feet

Heptameter — seven feet

Octameter — eight feet

The meter in poetry involves the exact arrangements of syllables into
repeated patterns called feet within a line.

Forms of Poetry and Literary Terms

How do you define a couplet or a Falling Meter? And what exactly is an
Iambic pentameter? We have provided a definition of poetry and literary
terms together with the meaning and examples, such as the above
definition of Rising Meter Literary Term. A helpful educational resource
for those taking an English test or a University student studying
English and American Literature. Each definition, such as the above
definition and example of Rising Meter Literary Term will provide a
glossary of literary terms or a dictionary with the meaning, samples,
examples and the rules of specialising in each different type of poem
and poetry.

Definition of Poetry

Poetry is piece of literature written by a poet in meter or verse
expressing various emotions which are expressed by the use of variety of
techniques including metaphors, similes and onomatopoeia. The emphasis
on the aesthetics of language and the use of techniques such as
repetition, meter and rhyme are what are commonly used to distinguish
poetry from prose. Poems often make heavy use of imagery and word
association to quickly convey emotions. An example of Rising Meter
Literary Term is detailed above.

Structure of Poetry

The structure used in poems varies with different types of poetry and
can be seen in the above example of Rising Meter Literary Term. The
structural elements include the line, couplet, strophe and stanza. Poets
combine the use of language and a specific structure to create
imaginative and expressive work. The structure used in some Poetry types
are also used when considering the visual effect of a finished poem. The
structure of many types of poetry  result in groups of lines on the page
which enhance the poem’s composition.

Iambic pentameter

Definition of Iambic pentameter Literary Term

How do you define Iambic pentameter? What is the definition of Iambic
pentameter?

The definition of Iambic pentameter is as follows:

Definition of Iambic pentameter Literary Term

Shakespeare’s plays were written mostly in iambic pentameter, which is
the most common type of meter in English poetry. It is a basic measure
of English poetry, five iambic feet in each line.

Example of Iambic pentameter

There are many examples of different types of poetry. An example of
Iambic pentameter Literary Term can be found in the poetic work of zzzz.

Forms of Poetry and Literary Terms

How do you define a couplet or a Falling Meter? And what exactly is an
Iambic pentameter? We have provided a definition of poetry and literary
terms together with the meaning and examples, such as the above
definition of Iambic pentameter. A helpful educational resource for
those taking an English test or a University student studying English
and American Literature. Each definition, such as the above definition
and example of Iambic pentameter will provide a glossary of literary
terms or a dictionary with the meaning, samples, examples and the rules
of specialising in each different type of poem and poetry.

Definition of Poetry

Poetry is piece of literature written by a poet in meter or verse
expressing various emotions which are expressed by the use of variety of
techniques including metaphors, similes and onomatopoeia. The emphasis
on the aesthetics of language and the use of techniques such as
repetition, meter and rhyme are what are commonly used to distinguish
poetry from prose. Poems often make heavy use of imagery and word
association to quickly convey emotions. An example of Iambic pentameter
is detailed above.

Structure of Poetry

The structure used in poems varies with different types of poetry and
can be seen in the above example of Iambic pentameter. The structural
elements include the line, couplet, strophe and stanza. Poets combine
the use of language and a specific structure to create imaginative and
expressive work. The structure used in some Poetry types are also used
when considering the visual effect of a finished poem. The structure of
many types of poetry  result in groups of lines on the page which
enhance the poem’s composition.

Anapest

A kind of metrical foot. An anapest (or anapaest) comprises two
unstressed syllables and one stressed one: for example, “unabridged,”
“intercede,” “on the loose.”

Because an anapest has three syllables per foot, it’s called a triple
meter.

An anapaest or anapest, also called antidactylus, is a metrical foot
used in formal poetry. In classical quantitative meters it consists of
two short syllables followed by a long one (as in a-na-paest); in
accentual stress meters it consists of two unstressed syllables followed
by one stressed syllable. It may be seen as a reversed dactyl. This word
comes from the Greek ??????????, anapaistos, literally “struck back” (a
dactyl reversed), from ‘ana-‘ + ‘-paistos’, verbal of ??????, paiein: to
strike.

Here is an example from William Cowper’s “Verses Supposed to be Written
by Alexander Selkirk” (1782), composed in anapaestic trimeter:

I am out of humanity’s reach

I must finish my journey alone

Because of its length and the fact that it ends with a stressed syllable
and so allows for strong rhymes, anapaest can produce a very rolling,
galloping feeling verse, and allows for long lines with a great deal of
internal complexity.

Another example of trimeter is the anonymously published A Visit From
St. Nicholas:

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house

The following is from Byron’s The Destruction of Sennacherib:

The Assyrian came down like a wolf on the fold

And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold

And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea

When the blue wave rolls nightly on deep Galilee.

An even more complex example comes from Yeats (The Wanderings of Oisin).
He intersperses anapests and iambs, using six-foot lines (rather than
four feet as above). Since the anapaest is already a long foot, this
makes for very long lines.

Fled foam underneath us and ’round us, a wandering and milky smoke

As high as the saddle-girth, covering away from our glances the tide

And those that fled and that followed from the foam-pale distance broke.

The immortal desire of immortals we saw in their faces and sighed.

The mixture of anapaests and iambs in this manner is most characteristic
of late 19th century verse, particularly that of Algernon Swinburne in
poems such as The Triumph of Time and the choruses from Atalanta in
Calydon. Swinburne also wrote several poems in more or less straight
anapaests, with line-lengths varying from three feet (“Dolores”) to
eight feet (“March: An Ode”). However, the anapaest’s most common role
in English verse is as a comic metre, the foot of the limerick, of Lewis
Carroll’s poem The Hunting of the Snark, Edward Lear’s nonsense poems,
T. S. Eliot’s Book of Practical Cats, a number of Dr. Seuss stories, and
innumerable other examples.

Apart from their independent role, anapaests are sometimes used as
substitutions in iambic verse. In strict iambic pentameter, anapaests
are rare, but they are found with some frequency in freer versions of
the iambic line, such as the verse of Shakespeare’s last plays, or the
lyric poetry of the 19th century.

Iamb

A kind of metrical foot. An iamb (the adjective is “iambic”) is an
unstressed syllable followed by a stressed one.

They also serve who only stand and wait.

Because each foot consists of two syllables, the iambic is known as a
duple meter. The other most common duple meter is trochaic. Note that
you can distinguish iambic from trochaic meter only by examining the
first and last feet in a verse, since they both alternate stressed and
unstressed syllables.

Iamb (band).

An iamb or iambus is a metrical foot used in various types of poetry.
Originally the term referred to one of the feet of the quantitative
meter of classical Greek prosody: a short syllable followed by a long
syllable (as in i-amb). This terminology was adopted in the description
of accentual-syllabic verse in English, where it refers to a foot
comprising an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable (as in
a-bove).

Accentual-syllabic use

? = syllable. The head of the foot constituent, i.e. the stressed
syllable, is indicated with a vertical line

A bracketed grid representation of an iamb. The x’s in the lower grid
are syllables, the x in the upper grid indicates the position of the
stressed syllable

In accentual-syllabic verse we could describe an iamb as a foot that
goes like this:

da DUM

Using the ‘ictus and x’ notation (see systems of scansion for a full
discussion of various notations) we can write this as:

x /

The word ‘attempt’ is a natural iamb:

x /

at- tempt

In phonology, an iambic foot is notated in a flat representation as
(?’?) or as foot tree with two branches W and S where W = weak and S =
strong.

Iambic pentameter is one of the most commonly used measures in English
and German poetry. A line of iambic pentameter comprises five
consecutive iambs.

Iambic trimeter is the metre of the spoken verses in Greek tragedy and
comedy, comprising six iambs – as one iambic metrum consisted of two
iambs. In English accentual-syllabic verse, iambic trimeter is a line
comprising three iambs.

Another common iambic form is ballad verse, in which a line of iambic
tetrameter is succeeded by a line of iambic trimeter, usually in
quatrain form.

A. B. Paterson wrote much of his poetry in iambic heptameter (which is
sometimes called the ‘fourteener’), and Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The
Rime of the Ancient Mariner also conforms to this stress pattern
(although it is usually written as though it were composed of lines
alternating between iambic tetrameter and iambic trimeter).

The reverse of an iamb is called a trochee.

Types of Meter

Tetrameter

Lo, thus I triumph like a king,

Content with that my mind doth bring. (Edward Dyer, “My Mind to Me A
Kingdom Is”)

‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe. (Lewis Carroll, “Jabberwocky”)

Pentameter

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield. (Alfred Tennyson,
“Ulysses”)

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? (William Shakespeare, Sonnet 18)

(Although, it could be argued that this line in fact reads: Shall I
compare thee to a summer’s day? Meter is often broken in this way,
sometimes for intended effect and sometimes simply due to the sound of
the words in the line. Where the stresses lie can be debated, as it
depends greatly on where the reader decides to place the stresses.
Although in this meter the foot ceases to be iambs but trochees.)

A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse! (William Shakespeare, Richard
III)

Heptameter

I s’pose the flats is pretty green up there in Ironbark. (A. B.
Paterson, The Man from Ironbark)

Key:

Non-bold = unstressed syllable

Bold = stressed syllable

Trochee, Trochaic

A kind of metrical foot. A trochee (the adjective is “trochaic”) is a
stressed syllable followed by an unstressed one:

Round about the cauldron go,

In the poisoned entrails throw.

Because each foot consists of two syllables, the trochaic is known as a
duple meter. The other most common duple meter is iambic, which is an
unstressed followed by a stressed syllable. Note that you can
distinguish iambic from trochaic meter only by examining the first foot
in a verse, since they both alternate stressed and unstressed syllables.

A trochee or choree, choreus, is a metrical foot used in formal poetry
consisting of a stressed syllable followed by an unstressed one. Trochee
comes from the Greek ??????, trokhos, wheel, and choree from ?????,
khoros, dance; both convey the “rolling” rhythm of this metrical foot.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s The Song of Hiawatha is written almost
entirely in trochees, barring the occasional substitution (iamb,
spondee, pyrrhic, etc.).

Should you ask me, whence these stories?

Whence these legends and traditions,

With the odours of the forest,

With the dew and damp of meadows,

In the second line, “and tra-” is a Pyrrhic substitution, as are “With
the” in the third and fourth lines, and “of the” in the third. Even so,
the dominant foot throughout the poem is the trochee.

Apart from the famous case of Longfellow’s The Song of Hiawatha, this
metre is rarely found in perfect examples, at least in English. This is
from Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”:

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December;

And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.

Trochaic meter is also seen among the works of William Shakespeare:

Double, double, toil and trouble;

Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Perhaps owing to its simplicity, though, trochaic meter is fairly common
in children’s rhymes:

Peter, Peter pumpkin-eater

Had a wife and couldn’t keep her.

Often a few trochees will be interspersed among iambs in the same lines
to develop a more complex or syncopated rhythm. Compare (William Blake):

Tyger, Tyger, burning bright

In the forests of the night

These lines are primarily trochaic, with the last syllable dropped so
that the line ends with a stressed syllable to give a strong rhyme or
masculine rhyme. By contrast, the intuitive way that the mind groups the
syllables in later lines in the same poem makes them feel more like
iambic lines with the first syllable dropped:

Did he smile his work to see?

In fact the surrounding lines by this point have become entirely iambic:

When the stars threw down their spears

And watered Heaven with their tears

. . .

Did he who made the lamb make thee?

Trochaic verse is also well-known in Latin poetry, especially of the
medieval period. Since the stress never falls on the final syllable in
Medieval Latin, the language is ideal for trochaic verse. The dies irae
of the Requiem mass is a perfect example:

Dies irae, dies illa

Solvet saeclum in favilla

Teste David cum Sybilla.

The Finnish national epic Kalevala, like much old Finnish poetry, is
written in a variation of trochaic tetrameter.

Spondee, Spondaic

A kind of metrical foot. A spondee is a duple foot with two stressed
syllables. Although it’s rare for any two adjacent syllables to receive
exactly the same stress, in spondees there’s no obvious stress on one
syllable rather than the other. Some examples: “pen-knife,” “ad hoc,”
“heartburn.” Spondees are sometimes substituted for iambs and trochees
to vary the rhythm.

??????, spond?, “libation”.

It is unrealistic to construct a whole, serious poem with spondees.
Consequently, spondees mainly occur as variants within, say, an
anapaestic structure.

For example (from G. K. Chesterton, “Lepanto”):

White founts falling in the courts of the sun

And the Soldan of Byzantium is smiling as they run;

This whole verse is rather unusual in structure, making it a somewhat
difficult example. The following is a possible analysis, and shows the
role of the spondee.

The basic template for both lines is anapaestic tetrameter: four feet,
each consisting of two short syllables then a long syllable
(duh-duh-DAH, duh-duh-DAH, duh-duh-DAH, duh-duh-DAH). It is then heavily
modified:

4 6 ” – ?

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The first anapaest in the first line is replaced with a spondee (“White
founts,” DAH-DAH)

The second anapaest in the first line is replaced with a trochee
(DAH-duh).

A simpler version of the first line might be:

There are white fountains falling in the courts of the sun .

Two short syllables are added at the beginning, and “founts” is
lengthened to “fountains.” These extra syllables add “filler,” so that
when the poem is read stress no longer naturally falls on the syllable
“fount” (or, does so to a lesser degree). As a result there are
unstressed syllables just before the “fall,” so that naturally becomes
an anapaest (“fountains fall-,” duh-duh-DAH), and the “ing” slips into
the following anapaest. Chesterton’s version changes all this; it is
less intuitive to write and has a more unusual sound. The spondee
effects this.

Tennyson often made use of spondaic and pyrrhic substitutions in his
work. Here are some examples:

This is my son, mine own Telemachus

To whom I leave the scepter and the isle,

Well-loved of me, discerning to fulfill

This labor, by slow prudence to make mild

A rugged people, and through soft degrees

Subdue them to the useful and the good.

-from Ulysses

Spondees above are “Well-loved,” “This la-,” “slow pru-,” and “make
mild.”

Be near me when my light is low,

When the blood creeps and the nerves prick

And tingle; and the heart is sick,

And all the wheels of Being slow.

-from In Memoriam

There are two spondees in this excerpt: “blood creeps,” and “nerves
prick.”

Another example of a poem using spondee is Gerard Manley Hopkins’ Pied
Beauty. He marks the 6th line in this way to indicate the spondee: “And
all trades, their gear and tackle and trim.” The poem also ends with the
short spondee l?????????

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