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Culture > Literature > Poetry

Now updated for CSW19. New words, if any, and new inflections of existing words, are shown in red.

acatalectic having a complete or full number of syllables in a poetic line.
acephalous lacking a head or a leader; lacking the first syllable or foot (of a hexameter).
acrostic a composition, usually in verse, in which the first or the last letters of the lines, or certain other letters, taken in order, form a name, word, phrase, or motto.
acrostical pertaining to, or characterized by, acrostics > ACROSTICALLY.
aeglogue eclogue a pastoral poem, often in the form of a dialogue between shepherds.
alcaic a verse form consisting of strophes with four tetrametric lines, attributed to Alcaeus, a lyric poet of Mitylene, about 600 BC.
alexandrine a French verse form.
amoebean alternately answering, responsive, as often in pastoral poetry.
amphibrach a foot of three syllables, the middle one long, the first and last short.
amphibrachic of or like an AMPHIBRACH, a foot of three syllables, the middle one long, the first and last short.
amphigoric relating to AMPHIGORY.
amphigory amphigouri a nonsensical piece of writing, usually in verse form, typically composed as a parody. [Fr. amphigouri].
amphimacer a foot of three syllables, the middle one short and the others long, as in cast/tas.
anacrusis one or more short syllables introductory to the normal rhythm of a line > ANACRUSES.
anapaest anapest two short metrical syllables followed by one long one. [Gk. anapaistos struck back, from ana back, and paiein to strike].
anapaestic anapestic in the form of an ANAPAEST, two short metrical syllables followed by one long one.
antibacchius a foot of two long (or stressed) syllables followed by a short (or unstressed) one > ANTIBACCHII.
antipoetic of, relating to, or characterized by opposition to traditional poetic technique or style.
antispast a metrical foot comprising an iambus followed by a trochee > ANTISPASTS. [Gk. antispastos, from antispaein, to draw back].
antispastic relating to an ANTISPAST, a foot composed of an iambus and a trochee.
arsis the accented or longer part of a poetic foot; the point where an ictus is put > ARSES.
asclepiad a choriambic verse, first used by the Greek poet Asclepias, consisting of four feet, viz. a spondee, two choriambi, and an iambus.
assonance vowel-rhyme, coincidence of vowel sound without regard to consonants.
asynartete not connected, consisting of parts having different rhythms; (noun) a verse of such a kind.
aubade a song or poem greeting the dawn or about lovers parting at dawn.
awdl a Welsh ode.
bacchiac relating to the BACCHIUS, a type of metrical foot.
bacchius a metrical foot composed of a short syllable and two long ones; according to some, two long and a short > BACCHII.
ballade a poetic form, originally for singing.
balladist one who composes ballads.
balladmonger a dealer in or composer of ballads.
balladry ballads collectively.
bard one of the ancient Celtic order of formal poets and singers; also an armour for a horse; (verb) to armour a horse > BARDS, BARDING, BARDED.
bardic pertaining to a bard.
bardism the state of a being a BARD.
bardling an inferior bard.
bardship the state of being a bard.
berhyme to mention in rhyme or verse; to rhyme about.
bobwheel the bob (short line near the end of a stanza) with the lines following it.
caesura cesura a pause in a poem or a song > CAESURAE or CAESURAS, CESURAE or CESURAS.
caesural cesural of or pertaining to a CAESURA. Also CESURAL.
caesuric relating to a CAESURA, a pause in a poem or a song.
cancionero a collection of songs and poems.
cancrine crab-wise; (of verses, etc) reading both ways, palindromic.
canto a principal division of a long poem > CANTOS.
canzone a Provençal or Italian form of lyric poetry, consisting of a series of stanzas without a refrain > CANZONES or CANZONI.
catalexis the condition of being CATALECTIC > CATALEXES.
catalectic (a line) lacking one syllable in the last foot.
cento a literary work, especially a poem, composed of parts taken from works of other authors > CENTOS or CENTONES. [L. cento, patchwork].
centoist centonist one who composes CENTOS, poems manufactured by putting together passages of other poems.
cesura see CAESURA.
cesural see CAESURAL.
cheville an unnecessary word added to round off a sentence or complete a line of verse.
choliamb a variety of iambic trimeter. [Gk. choliambos, from cholos, lame + iambos, iambus].
choliambic a verse having an iambus in the fifth place, and a spondee in the sixth or last.
choree a TROCHEE.
choreic relating to a CHOREE, a trochee.
choreus a trochee, a choree > CHOREUSES.
choriamb choriambus a metrical foot comprising a trochee and an iambus > CHORIAMBS, CHORIAMBI. [Gk. choriambos, from choreios, a trochee + iambos, iambus].
choriambic pertaining to a choriamb.
cinquain a group of five, especially a five-line stanza.
clerihew a light verse quatrain rhyming aabb and usually dealing with a person named in the initial rhyme.
colubriad (Cowper) the epic of a snake.
comma a fragment of a few words or feet in ancient prosody > COMMAS or COMMATA.
concretism the theory or practice of concrete poetry.
couplet a pair of rhyming lines.
crambo rhyme; a game in which one player gives a word to which another finds a rhyme; rhyme.
cramboclink rhyming doggerel.
cretic a type of metrical foot.
cyclus a cycle of myths, poems, songs, etc > CYCLUSES (not CYCLI*).
cynghanedd a technique in Welsh verse.
dactyl a metrical foot of one short syllable followed by two long syllables. [Gk. daktylos, a finger].
dactylar pertaining to a DACTYL; dactylic.
dactylic (a line) consisting chiefly or wholly of, dactyls > DACTYLICS.
dactylist a writer of dactylic verse.
decastich a ten-line poem.
decasyllable a verse line or a verb having ten syllables.
decasyllabic (a line of verse) having ten syllables.
dectet a group of ten (musicians, lines of verse).
dimeter a verse of two measures.
dipodic of or like DIPODY, a double foot in prosody.
dipody two metrical feet taken together, or included in one measure.
dispondee a double spondee; a foot consisting of four long syllables.
distich a couple of verses or poetic lines making complete sense. [Gk. distichos, from di-, twice + stichos, a line].
distichal of or like a DISTICH, a couple of verses or poetic lines making complete sense.
dithyramb a hymn or poem to honor Bacchus.
dithyrambic like a DITHYRAMB.
ditrochee a double trochee; a foot made up of two trochees.
dit ditt a poem, the words of a song.
divan a collection of poems in Persian or Arabic, usually by a single author.
dizain a ten-line stanza or poem.
dochmiac a DOCHMIUS, a foot of five syllables > DOCHMIACS.
dochmius a foot of five syllables, typically with first and fourth short, the rest long > DOCHMIUSES or DOCHMII.
doggerel doggrel dogrel poor quality comic verse.
dolichurus a dactylic hexameter with a redundant syllable at the end > DOLICHURI.
duan a division of a poem corresponding to a canto; a poem or song.
eclogue see AEGLOGUE.
elegiac a verse line of five dactyls with a marked caesura > ELEGIACS.
elegiacal related to ELEGY > ELEGIACALLY.
elegiast elegist one who composes elegies.
elegise elegize to write an elegy. Also ELEGIZE.
elegy a mournful poem for one who is dead.
enjamb in verse, to make an ENJAMBEMENT.
enjambement enjambment the continuation of a sentence from one line of a couplet to the next.
envoi the concluding part of a poem or book.
epic a long narrative poem.
epical epic > EPICALLY.
epicede a funeral ode.
epicedial epicedian of or relating to dirges or elegies.
epicedium a funeral ode, an epicede > EPICEDIA.
epicism the writing of epics.
epicist one who writes epics.
epiclike like an epic.
epigram a short, witty poem; a concise, clever and often paradoxical statement.
epinicion epinikion an ode in honour of a victor or winner.
epithalamion epithalamium a poem or song in honor of a bride and bridegroom > EPITHALAMIA, EPITHALAMIUMS.
epitrite a metrical foot consisting of three long syllables and one short syllable.
epode a genre of lyric poem, in which a longer verse is followed by a shorter one.
epodic relating to an EPODE, a kind of lyric poem.
epopee epic poetry, especially as a literary genre.
epopoeia an epic poem; epic poetry.
epos an epic poem.
epyllion a poem with some resemblance to an epic but shorter > EPYLLIONS or EPYLLIA. [Gk. epullion].
fifteener a verse of fifteen syllables.
fit fitt fitte fytte a division of a poem.
flyting a dispute or exchange of personal abuse in verse form > FLYTINGS.
foot a division of a line of poetry.
fourteener a verse line of fourteen syllables.
fytte see FIT.
galliambic a classical metre.
gauchesco of a type of Spanish poetry inspired by the life, language and customs of the gaucho.
gazal ghazal ghazel a Persian verse-form.
genethliacon a birthday ode.
georgic a poem on husbandry or rural affairs. [L. georgicus].
georgical agricultural.
ghazal see GAZAL.
ghazel see GAZAL.
glyconic a line consisting of a SPONDEE, a CHORIAMB, and a PYRRHIC; -- applied to a kind of verse in Greek and Latin poetry.
goliard a wandering scholar in the Middle Ages, known for riotous behaviour and satirical Latin poems lampooning the church.
goliardy goliardery the satirical or ribald poetry of the Goliards.
gradus a dictionary of prosody, designed as an aid in writing Greek or Latin poetry > GRADUSES.
haikai a series of linked HAIKU. No —S.
haiku a syllabic verse-form > HAIKUS.
hemistich half a verse line.
hendecasyllable a metrical line of eleven syllables.
hendecasyllabic of a metricla line, having eleven syllables.
hephthemimer in Greek and Latin prosody, seven half-feet.
heptameter a verse line of seven feet.
heptapodic of a verse, having seven feet.
heptapody the state of having seven feet.
heptastich a poem, strophe, or stanza that consists of seven lines.
heptasyllabic having seven syllables.
heroic (noun) a heroic verse.
hexameter a verse line of six feet.
hexametral like a HEXAMETER.
hexametric hexametrical of verse, written in hexameters.
hexapodic of a line or verse, having six feet.
hexapody a line or verse of six feet.
hexastich a poem or stanza of six lines.
hokku a series of HAIKU. No —S.
huitain a group of eight lines of verse.
hypercatalectic having an additional syllable or half-foot after the last complete DIPODY.
hypercatalexis the state of being HYPERCATALECTIC > HYPERCATALEXES.
hypermeter a verse which has a redundant syllable or foot; a hypercatalectic verse.
iamb a poetic foot consisting of a short then a long syllable.
iambic an IAMB, a poetic foot consisting of a short then a long syllable > IAMBICS; (adj.) consisting of iambs > IAMBICALLY.
iambist one who writes in IAMBICS.
iambus a metrical foot > IAMBI or IAMBUSES.
ictal ictic relating to an ICTUS, a rhythmical or metrical stress.
ictus a recurring stress/accent in a rhythmic/metrical series of sounds; a mark indicating the syllable on which stress/accent occurs > ICTUSES. [L. ictus, a blow].
idyl idyll a short description in verse or prose of a picturesque scene or incident, esp. in rustic life.
idylist idyllist one who writes IDYLS.
idyllian relating to an IDYLL.
idyllic of or like an IDYLL > IDYLLICALLY.
idyllist see IDYLIST.
iliad a long poem.
imagism an early 20c school of poetry aiming at concentration, clear and simple language, and freedom of form and subject.
jingle a short simple verse often with an associated tune.
kenning a periphrastic formula in Old Norse or other old Germanic poetry.
kyrielle a string of short lines in stanzas all ending with the same word.
laisse a tirade or string of verses on one rhyme.
limerick a form of humorous verse in a five-line jingle. [Said to be from a refrain formerly used, referring to Limerick in Ireland].
limma in prosody, a pause of one MORA.
logaoedic a verse composed of dactyls and trochees so arranged as to produce a movement like that of ordinary speech.
lyric a lyrical poem.
lyrical having the form of a song > LYRICALLY.
lyricise lyricize to write lyrics.
lyricism the quality of being lyrical.
macaronic mixing words from different languages, especially Latin with vernacular or Latinized vernacular words; (noun) a verse of this type.
makar maker a poet.
melic of a poem, written to be sung. Also (noun) a kind of grass.
metre the regulated succession of groups of syllables (long and short, stressed and unstressed) in which poetry is usually written; (verb) to versify.
metrician a composer of verses.
metricise to convert to metrical form.
metricism the study of metre.
metricist a person skilled in metres, a METRICIAN.
metricize to convert to metrical form.
metrics the study of versification.
metrifier one who metrifies.
metrify to make verse.
metrist a maker of verses.
minnesinger a troubadour-like poet of mediaeval Germany.
minstrel a medieval musician, itinerant or attached to a noble household, who sang or recited his own or others' poems, accompanying himself on a stringed instrument.
minstrelsy the art of the minsrel.
mismetre to spoil the metre (of a poem).
misrhymed badly rhymed. No MISRHYME*.
miurus a hexameter with a short penultimate syllable > MIURUSES.
molossus a verse foot of three long syllables > MOLOSSI. [The adjective of Molossia or Molossis in the Epirus region of ancient Greece, famous in ancient times for its great mastiff dogs].
monodic monodical relating to MONODY, a mournful ode or poem performed by a single mourner.
monodist a writer of a MONODY.
monody a poem in which the poet laments someone's death.
monometer a rhythmic series, consisting of a single meter.
monometric monometrical like a MONOMETER.
monopody a verse measure of one foot only.
monorhyme a series of lines all rhyming together.
monostich a composition consisting of one verse only.
mora a unit of metrical time in prosody > MORAE or MORAS.
mythopoet a myth-maker; a writer of poems on mythical subjects.
nostos a poem describing a return journey > NOSTOI.
octameter a verse-line of eight feet.
octapodic of a verse line, having eight feet.
octapody a verse-line of eight feet.
octastich a poem or stanza of eight lines.
octonarian in prosody, a line having eight feet.
octonarius in prosody, a line having eight feet > OCTONARII.
octosyllabic (a line) consisting of eight syllables.
ode an elaborate lyric addressed to someone or something.
odic of or pertaining to an ODE.
odist a writer of odes.
ollamh ollav an Irish master poet.
paeon paeonic a foot of four syllables, one long and three short.
palinode palinody an ode or song recanting or retracting something in an earlier poem.
pantoum pantun a verse form in quatrains, in which the second and fourth lines appear as first and third line of next quatrain, and the last line repeats the first line.
paracrostic poem whose initial letters reproduce its first verse.
pararhyme a form of rhyme in which the consonants by not the vowels of the last stressed syllable are identical.
paroemiac the anapaestic dimeter catalectic.
passus a section of a poem or story > PASSUSES.
pastourelle a medieval poem between a knight and a shepherdess.
penill pennill a verse or stanza in Welsh poetry > PENILLION, PENNILLION.
pentameter a line of verse consisting of five metrical feet.
pentapodic relating to PENTAPODY, a measure of five feet.
pentapody a measure or series consisting of five feet.
pentastich a composition consisting of five verses.
poem a composition in verse.
poematic pertaining to a poem, or to poetry; poetical.
poesy to dabble in poetry.
poet one who writes poems.
poetaster an inferior poet.
poetess a female poet.
poetic pertaining to poetry > POETICALLY.
poetical related to poetry > POETICALLY; (noun) a writer of poetry > POETICALS.
poeticism a poetical phrase esp. a trite one.
poetics poetic theory or practice.
poeticule a poetaster.
poetise poetize to write as a poet.
poetiser poetizer one who poetises.
poetlike like a poet.
poetresse a poetess > POETRESSES.
poetry literary work in metrical form.
poetship the state or personality of a poet.
proceleusmatic inciting; encouraging; exhorting; (noun) a metrical foot of four short syllables.
prosodial prosodical.
prosodian prosodist one skilled in PROSODY.
prosodic of or relating to versification.
prosody the study of versification; esp > the systematic study of metrical structure.
pyrrhic a Greek metrical foot consisting of two short syllables. [Gk. pyrriche (orchesis) pyrrhic dance, said to be from Pyrrichos, the inventor].
qasida a formal Arabic poem of praise.
quatorzain a poem of fourteen lines; a sonnet.
quatrain a stanza of four lines rhyming alternately.
renga (Japanese) a kind of linked verse > RENGAS.
rhime a rhyme.
rhyme rime in two or more words, identity of sound from the last stressed vowel to the end; (verb) to compose verse with corresponding terminal sounds.
rhymeless destitute of rhyme.
rhymer rimer one who composes rhymes.
rhymester rimester a rhymer; a maker of poor poetry.
rhymist a versifier.
rimeless without RIME.
rime see RHYME.
rimer see RHYMER.
rimester see RHYMESTER.
rondeau a poem of 13 lines with two rhymes and the opening words used as a refrain in two places > RONDEAUX.
rondel rondelle a verse form of thirteen or fourteen lines on two rhymes, the seventh and thirteenth being identical with the first, and the eighth and (if present) the fourteenth with the second.
rondelet a short 5 or 7-line rondeau with one refrain per stanza.
rubai a Persian verse-form, a four-line stanza > RUBAIYAT or RUBAIS.
sapphic a verse form said to have been invented by the Greek lyric poet Sappho.
scald skald an ancient Scandinavian bard.
scaldic skaldic relating to a SCALD or SKALD.
scaldship skaldship the office of SCALD.
scan to analyse metrically.
scansion the determination of the metre of verse; prosody.
scazon a choliamb > SCAZONS or SCAZONTES. [Gk. scazos, limping].
scazontic a limping verse, a SCAZON.
scop an Anglo-Saxon poet and harpist.
sdrucciola (of rhyme) triple.
seguidilla a Spanish verse form of seven lines.
semeion in ancient prosody, one of the two divisions of a foot > SEMEIA.
semiped a half foot in poetry.
senarius a Greek or Latin verse containing six iambic feet per line > SENARII.
senryu a 3-line Japanese poem. No —S.
septenarius a seven-foot verse, esp a trochaic tetrameter catalectic.
sestina sestine sextain sixain sixaine a stanza of six lines.
sijo a Korean verse form > SIJOS.
sirvente a (usu. satirical) poem or lay recited by a medieval troubadour.
sixain see SESTINA.
sixaine see SESTINA.
sixteener a verse of sixteen syllables.
skald see SCALD.
skaldic see SCALDIC.
skaldship see SCALDSHIP.
sonnet to write sonnets, to celebrate in sonnets > SONNETS, SONNETING or SONNETTING, SONNETED or SONNETTED.
sonnetary of or like a sonnet.
sonneteer a writer of sonnets, a poetaster.
sonneteering the composition of sonnets.
sonnetise sonnetize to compose sonnets.
spondaic or of pertaining to a spondee; (noun) a spondee.
spondee in verse, a foot of two long syllables.
stanza a division of a poem.
stanzaed in STANZAS.
stanzaic pertaining to, or consisting of, stanzas; as, a couplet in stanzaic form.
stanze a stanza.
stanzo a stanza > STANZOES or STANZOS.
stich a line of verse, or section of prose of comparable length.
stichic relating to verse composed in homogeneous and recurrent lines, as in recitative poetry > STICHICALLY.
stichos a stichometric line of a manuscript; a verse > STICHOI.
stornello an Italian folk verse form > STORNELLI.
strophe a group of lines forming a section of a lyric poem. [Gk. strophe, turning].
strophic strophical pertaining to, containing, or consisting of, strophes.
synaphea synapheia metrical continuity between two verses in a system.
tanka (Japanese) a 5-line Japanese verse form, its 1st and 3rd lines comprised of 5 syllables, the rest of 7.
tautometric tautometrical exactly corresponding in arrangement of syllables.
telestich a poem in which the consecutive final letters of the lines spell a name. Cf. ACROSTIC, where it is the initial letters.
tenson tenzon a competition in verse between two troubadours [Fr. from L. tensio, a struggle].
tercet tiercet terzetta a triplet of lines that rhyme together or are connected with adjacent rhymes.
tetrabrach a word or metrical foot composed of four short syllables.
tetrameter a verse or line consisting of four measures, that is, in iambic, trochaic, and anapestic verse, of eight feet; in other kinds of verse, of four feet.
tetrapodic of verse, having four metrical feet.
tetrapody a set of four metrical feet.
tetrasemic in Greek prosody, equivalent to four short syllables.
tetrastich a stanza, epigram, or poem, consisting of four verses or lines.
tiercet see TERCET.
tribrach a poetic foot of three short syllables.
trichronous trisemic.
trimeter a verse of three measures.
trimetric trimetrical relating to a TRIMETER, a verse of three measures.
triolet an eight-lined poem rhymed ab aa abab, lines 4 and 7 repeating 1, and 8 repeating 2.
triplet three lines rhyming together.
tripody three metrical feet taken together, or included in one measure.
triseme a foot containing three short syllables. [Gk. trisemos, from sema, a sign].
trisemic relating to a TRISEME, a foot containing three short syllables.
tristich a stanza of three lines.
trochaic of or like a TROCHEE; (noun) a trochaic verse.
trochee in prosody, a foot of one long syllable, one short.
troubadour trouvere trouveur one of a school of poets who flourished in Northern France from the eleventh to the fourteenth century.
unrhymed not rhymed.
unrimed not rimed.
unscanned not scanned as verse.
vers verse.
verse to versify.
verselet a small verse.
verseman one who writes verses, an inferior poet.
verser a versifier.
verset a verse.
versifier versificator a maker of verses.
versify to change from prose into metrical form.
verslibrist one who writes vers libre, free verse.
villanelle a poem consisting of five tercets and a quatrain.
virelai virelay an old French lyric form in two-rhymed stanzas of short lines.
waka (Japanese) a Japanese verse-form.