(1366 words)
  • John Constable (University of Cambridge)

Literary/ Cultural Context Essay

  • The Literary Encyclopedia. Volume 12: Global Voices, Global Histories: World Literatures and Cultures.

Rhyme, as with many other fundamental terms in the description of literary art, has often been used prescriptively in order to reinforce a particular taste or opinion. Thus ‘assonance’ and ‘alliteration’ are often strictly separated from ‘rhyme’ in order to support a particular view of what should be regarded as an acceptable rhyme. In this article we shall take an inclusive and descriptive view, and so begin with a very broad definition:

Rhyme is some degree of similarity of sound between two or more words brought into a salient relationship.

Such a definition includes what is generally called ‘rhyme’ in English, where the words brought into …

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Constable, John. "Rhyme". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 November 2001
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=956, accessed 09 October 2015.]