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3
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2answers
228 views

Shakespeare and Maths: Metre and Completeness

Shakespearian sonnets have a particular structure where each line of the poem contains ten syllables (due to the use of iambic pentameter). This is, one might think, because ten sounds 'complete' to ...
0
votes
2answers
47 views

“I will meet” anapest substitute

I have the following song verse, which needs to be composed in Anapest (unaccented unaccented accented): I will meet (i-WILL-meet) Annabelle (an-nuh-BELLE) In my dreams (in-my-DREAMS) What would ...
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vote
0answers
256 views

What meter is best for songs, especially hymns? [closed]

I realize that this may be somewhat open-ended, but although I am not a poet, I want to try my hand at writing a song, perhaps a hymn, and wonder if perhaps iambic pentameter is best, or perhaps ...
3
votes
1answer
168 views

Is “GPS” a molossus?

It seems to me that "GPS", "FBI", "SMS", and other three-syllable initialisms are examples of molossus, or words with three equally stressed syllables. Are they? (I've never been good at scansion).
1
vote
1answer
420 views

Iambic Tetrameter?

God and my right shall me defend. I have said this motto a fair few times in my head a number of times and it seems as though iambic tetrameter is the meter that fits best The way I see it is, ...
2
votes
1answer
306 views

Meter in Clare's “I am”

I've determined that almost all of John Clare's "I am" is in iambic pentameter. But I'm having trouble identifying the meter of the following line: But the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems My ...
25
votes
4answers
2k views

Why don’t we write poetry like Beowulf any longer?

Beowulf, the Old English epic poem, uses a characteristically Germanic style of poetry in which the number of strong beats per line is what counts. Instead of counting syllables, strong beats alone ...
1
vote
1answer
364 views

Meter in Tennyson's *Maud*

How should Tennyson's Maud be read? I.e. what is its meter? Here are the first four lines: I HATE the dreadful hollow behind the little wood, Its lips in the field above are dabbled with ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

How does one tell the difference between long and short syllables?

Currently in the process of playing with Limericks and the meter they use usually requires a meter of long followed by two short syllables or vice versa. My question, how do you differentiate? Is it ...
7
votes
3answers
873 views

Why do we say 'commentator' instead of 'commenter'?

Another thread addresses the Englishness of the words. My question is different and a lot more convoluted: I hope I can make it plain and simple. I. There are straightforward nouns of action and ...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

Is it true that iambic pentameter is “natural” to English? If so, why?

When I first read Dante's Divine Comedy in high school, I remember once being puzzled at what I thought were strained rhymes in the translation, and mentioned it to my English teacher. In reply, she ...