WORD ORIGIN noun a group of five. . Prosody a short poem consisting of five, usually unrhymed lines containing, respectively, two, four, six, eight, and two syllables. any stanza of five lines. Origin of cinquain 1705–15;
Late Latin cinque
collective suffix. See
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for cinquain Word Origin for cinquain
C18 (in the sense: a military company of five): from French
cinq five, from Latin quinque; compare quatrain
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Word Origin and History for cinquain n.
"collection of five," 1711, from French
cinquain "bundle of five objects," from cinq "five" (see five). Originally in English of military orders of battle; of five-lined stanzas of verse from 1882 (give a more specific form in English than usual in French).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper