Simple Definition of pentameter
: a rhythm in poetry that has five stressed syllables in each line
Full Definition of pentameter
: a line of verse consisting of five metrical feet
Examples of pentameter in a sentence
a poem written in iambic pentameter
Did You Know?
In a line of poetry written in perfect iambic pentameter, there are five unstressed syllables, each of which is followed by a stressed syllable. Each pair of syllables is a metrical foot called an iamb. Much of the greatest poetry in English has been written in iambic pentameter; Chaucer, Shakespeare, and Milton used it more than any other meter. Robert Frost's line "I'm going out to clean the pasture spring" is an example of it; his "And miles to go before I sleep" is instead an example of iambic tetrameter, with only four accented syllables.
Origin and Etymology of pentameter
Latin, from Greek pentametros having five metrical feet, from penta- + metron measure — more at measure
First Known Use: 1580
Learn More about pentameter
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pentameter
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