iambic pentameter

[ (eye-am-bik pen-tam-uh-tuhr) ]

The most common meter in English verse. It consists of a line ten syllables long that is accented on every second beat (see blank verse). These lines in iambic pentameter are from The Merchant of Venice, by William Shakespeare:

Ĭn sóoth,/Ĭ knów/nŏt whý/Ĭ ám/sŏ sád.
Ĭt wéa/riĕs mé;/yŏu sáy/ĭt wéa/riĕs yóu....

Nearby words

  1. iago,
  2. ialysus,
  3. iamaw,
  4. iamb,
  5. iambic,
  6. iambus,
  7. ian,
  8. iap,
  9. iapetus,
  10. iapigia

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.