noun \ˈhī-(ˌ)kü\

: a Japanese form of poetry or a poem written in this form

plural haiku

Full Definition of HAIKU

:  an unrhymed verse form of Japanese origin having three lines containing usually five, seven, and five syllables respectively; also :  a poem in this form usually having a seasonal reference — compare tanka

Examples of HAIKU

  1. He has written many beautiful haiku.

Origin of HAIKU

First Known Use: 1902

Other Literature Terms

apophasis, bathos, bildungsroman, bowdlerize, caesura, coda, doggerel, euphemism, poesy, prosody


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Unrhymed Japanese poetic form. It consists of 17 syllables arranged in three lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables, respectively. The form expresses much and suggests more in the fewest possible words. It gained distinction in the 17th century, when Basho elevated it to a highly refined art. Haiku remains Japan's most popular poetic form and is widely imitated in English and other languages.


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