• synonyms

blank verse

See more synonyms for blank verse on Thesaurus.com
  1. unrhymed verse, especially the unrhymed iambic pentameter most frequently used in English dramatic, epic, and reflective verse.
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Origin of blank verse

First recorded in 1580–90
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for blank verse

Historical Examples

  • Society at the time of the discovery of the blank-verse Indian of America was crude.

    Comic History of the United States

    Bill Nye

  • At the moment I am most of all interested in my blank-verse tragedy.

  • Martin recollected his blank-verse tragedy, and sent it instead.

    Martin Eden

    Jack London

  • He said that the name was in itself a great incentive to blank-verse.

    Seven Men

    Max Beerbohm

  • His antipathy to the country resembled his contempt for blank-verse—he could not enjoy it.

British Dictionary definitions for blank verse

blank verse

  1. prosody unrhymed verse, esp in iambic pentameters
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for blank verse


1580s; the thing itself is attested in English poetry from mid-16c. and is classical in origin.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

blank verse in Culture

blank verse

Verse written in iambic pentameter, without rhyme. Many of the speeches in the plays of William Shakespeare are written in blank verse; this example is from Macbeth:

Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.
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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.