Ballad stanza


Ballad stanza

In poetry, a Ballad stanza is the four-line stanza, known as a quatrain, most often found in the folk ballad. This form consists of alternating four- and three-stress lines. Usually only the second and fourth lines rhyme (an abcb pattern). Assonance in place of rhyme is common. Samuel Taylor Coleridge adopted the ballad stanza in "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," alternating eight and six syllable lines. :All in a hot and copper sky:The bloody Sun, at noon,:Right up above the mast did stand,:No bigger than the Moon.:::Coleridge, "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," lines 111 – 114

The longer first and third lines are rarely rhymed, although at times poets may use internal rhyme in these lines.

:In mist or cloud, on mast or shroud,:It perched for vespers nine;:Whiles all the night, through fog-smoke white,:Glimmered the white Moon-shine.:::Coleridge, "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," lines 75 – 78


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  • ballad stanza — n. the four line stanza commonly used in ballads, generally rhymed abcb …   English World dictionary

  • ballad stanza — Pros. a four line stanza consisting of unrhymed first and third lines in iambic tetrameter and rhymed second and fourth lines in iambic trimeter, often used in ballads. [1930 35] * * * ▪ literature       a verse stanza common in English ballads… …   Universalium

  • ballad stanza — noun : a verse stanza common in English ballads that consists of 2 lines in ballad meter usually printed as a 4 line stanza with lines 1 and 3 of 4 accents each unrhymed and with lines 2 and 4 of 3 accents each rhymed …   Useful english dictionary

  • ballad stanza — noun Date: 1856 a stanza consisting of four lines with the first and third lines unrhymed iambic tetrameters and the second and fourth lines rhymed iambic trimeters …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • ballad stanza — bal′lad stan za n. pro a four line stanza, popular in ballads, with the first and third lines in iambic tetrameter and the second and fourth in iambic trimeter, rhyming abcb[/ex] • Etymology: 1930–35 …   From formal English to slang

  • ballad stanza — /ˈbæləd stænzə/ (say baluhd stanzuh) noun the metrical form for ballad verse, ordinarily consisting of four lines …   Australian English dictionary

  • ballad — balladic /beuh lad ik/, adj. balladlike, adj. /bal euhd/, n. 1. any light, simple song, esp. one of sentimental or romantic character, having two or more stanzas all sung to the same melody. 2. a simple narrative poem of folk origin, composed in… …   Universalium

  • ballad —    Ballads, specifically folk ballads (also called traditional or popular ballads), are narrative folk songs transmitted orally among the common people in preliterate or partially literate societies.While ballads are known to have existed… …   Encyclopedia of medieval literature

  • ballad meter — noun : the meter common in English ballads consisting chiefly of iambic lines of 7 accents each arranged in rhymed pairs and usually printed as the 4 line ballad stanza …   Useful english dictionary

  • ballad — [bal′əd] n. [ME balad < OFr ballade, dancing song < OProv ballada, (poem for a) dance < balar, to dance < LL ballare: see BALL2] 1. a romantic or sentimental song with the same melody for each stanza 2. a song or poem that tells a… …   English World dictionary