How To: Recognize and analyze iambic pentameter

Recognize and analyze iambic pentameter

Meter, specifically iambic pentameter, can be used to analyze a poem. Iambic pentameter is used in poetry and drama and describes a particular rhythm that words establish in each line. Rhythm is created through the stressing and un-stressing of syllables. Small groups of syllables are called feet. A foot is a group of two or three syllables and will often contain a stressed and an unstressed syllable. Iambic describes the type of foot that is used. Pentameter indicates that a line of poetry has five of such feet. Iambic pentameter is associated with sonnets. Sonnet 18 by William Shakespeare is a famous example of iambic pentameter.

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