Sonnet a short poem with 14, ten-syllable, rhyming lines. Written in a strict poetic form, the sonnet was very popular during Shakespeare’s lifetime.
Characteristics of Sonnets • A sonnet is simply a poem written in a certain format. • You can identify a sonnet if the poem has the following characteristics.
Sonnets consist of 14 lines. And,
Sonnets are written in Iambic pentameter Each line of a sonnet contains 5 iambs or 10 syllables. Iamb: a unit of rhythm in poetry, consisting of one unstressed syllable followed by one stressed syllable iambic pentameter: five-beat line consisting of five iambs in each line. An iambic foot is an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable. The rhythm can be written as: da DUM The human heartbeat is the most common example of this rhythm. A line of iambic pentameter is five iambic feet in a row: da DUM da DUM, And,
Sonnets have a strict rhyme scheme. • The rhyme scheme of a sonnet is an end rhyme scheme that follows this pattern; ABAB, CDCD, EFEF, GG. • end rhyme: occurs when two or more lines end in words that rhyme
A Shakespearean (or English or Elizabethan): A B First QUATRAIN A B C D E F G G Second QUATRAIN Third QUATRAIN COUPLET Quatrain: a group of four lines in a poem Couplet: a pair of lines of poetry
Example u Q 1 Q 2 Q 3 Couplet s u s u s 1. My college life has left me without sleep. A 2. I study every night locked in my room. B 3. The loneliness doth cause my soul to weep, A 4. The walls at times feel almost like a tomb. B 5. My social life has vanished in the haze C 6. That drifts about me when I think of love, D 7. And hours doeth creep by in a blurry daze C 8. With hope of romance stolen from above. D 9. My health is really starting to erode. E 10. I cannot walk and talk ‘cause I must pant F 11. And wheeze because my bod cannot the load E 12. Endure; and as to run, well I just can’t. F 13. So from the doctor I must seek some help. G 14. I bet he will suggest I eat some kelp. G
Can you identify the rhyme scheme? Can you identify the quatrains? Label the couplet. Label the unstressed and stressed iambs in line 1. (label stressed with an “s” and unstressed with a “u”. Number each line to verify if the poem is indeed a sonnet.
Create your own sonnet.