enjambment

noun

en·​jamb·​ment in-ˈjam-mənt How to pronounce enjambment (audio)
variants or less commonly enjambement
: the running over of a sentence from one verse or couplet into another so that closely related words fall in different lines compare run-on

Examples of enjambment in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Speakers stop abruptly and pop up in the next paragraph; snappy asides and transitions appear as enjambments — pushing the pace forward like the ding of a typewriter carriage. J. Howard Rosier, Vulture, 10 Mar. 2023 Each enjambment creates a lively imbalance, nudging us into the next line. Brad Leithauser, WSJ, 11 Feb. 2022 Her book works because her blank verse, with its seemingly unstudied enjambments, is supple yet pared down. Dwight Garner, New York Times, 14 Mar. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'enjambment.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

French enjambement, from Middle French, encroachment, from enjamber to straddle, encroach on, from en- + jambe leg — more at jamb

First Known Use

circa 1839, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of enjambment was circa 1839

Dictionary Entries Near enjambment

Cite this Entry

“Enjambment.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/enjambment. Accessed 17 Jun. 2024.

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