A couplet has rhyming stanzas each made up of two lines. Shakespearean sonnets usually end in a couplet.
Poetry (from the Greek poiesis — ποίησις — meaning a "making", seen also in such terms as "poiesishemo"; more narrowly, the making of poetry) is a form of literary art which uses aesthetic and rhythmic qualities of language—such as phonaesthetics, sound symbolism, and metre—to evoke meanings in addition to, or in place of, the prosaic ostensible meaning.
Poetry has a long history, dating back to the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh. Early poems evolved from folk songs such as the Chinese Shijing, or from a need to retell oral epics, as with the Sanskrit Vedas, Zoroastrian Gathas, and the Homeric epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey. Ancient attempts to define poetry, such as Aristotle's Poetics, focused on the uses of speech in rhetoric, drama, song and comedy. Later attempts concentrated on features such as repetition, verse form and rhyme, and emphasized the aesthetics which distinguish poetry from more objectively-informative, prosaic forms of writing. From the mid-20th century, poetry has sometimes been more generally regarded as a fundamental creative act employing language.
A sonnet is a poetic form which originated in Italy; the Sicilian poet Giacomo Da Lentini is credited with its invention. The term sonnet derives from the Italian word sonetto (from Old Provençal sonet a little poem, from son song, from Latin sonus a sound). By the thirteenth century it signified a poem of fourteen lines that follows a strict rhyme scheme and specific structure. Conventions associated with the sonnet have evolved over its history. Writers of sonnets are sometimes called "sonneteers", although the term can be used derisively. One of the best-known sonnet writers is William Shakespeare, who wrote 154 of them (not including those that appear in his plays). A Shakespearean, or English, sonnet consists of fourteen lines written in iambic pentameter, a pattern in which an unstressed syllable is followed by a stressed syllable five times. The rhyme scheme in a Shakespearean sonnet is a-b-a-b, c-d-c-d, e-f-e-f, g-g; the last two lines are a rhyming couplet.
Traditionally, English poets employ iambic pentameter when writing sonnets, but not all English sonnets have the same metrical structure. The first sonnet in Sir Philip Sidney's sequence Astrophel and Stella, for example, has 12 syllables; these lines are iambic hexameters, albeit with an inverted first foot in several lines. In the Romance languages, the hendecasyllable and Alexandrine are the most widely used metres.
Shakespeare's sonnets are a collection of 154 sonnets, dealing with themes such as the passage of time, love, beauty and mortality, first published in a 1609 quarto entitled SHAKE-SPEARES SONNETS.: Never before imprinted. (although sonnets 138 and 144 had previously been published in the 1599 miscellany The Passionate Pilgrim). The quarto ends with "A Lover's Complaint", a narrative poem of 47 seven-line stanzas written in rhyme royal.
The first 17 poems, traditionally called the procreation sonnets, are addressed to a young man urging him to marry and have children in order to immortalize his beauty by passing it to the next generation. Other sonnets express the speaker's love for a young man; brood upon loneliness, death, and the transience of life; seem to criticise the young man for preferring a rival poet; express ambiguous feelings for the speaker's mistress; and pun on the poet's name. The final two sonnets are allegorical treatments of Greek epigrams referring to the "little love-god" Cupid.
A rhyme scheme is the pattern of rhyme between lines of a poem or song. It is usually referred to by using letters to indicate which lines rhyme; lines designated with the same letter all rhyme with each other. and therefore, it is the pattern of end rhymes or lines.