The Library of Congress > Linked Data Service > LC Genre/Form Terms (LCGFT)

Villanelle


  • Nineteen-line poems with two repeating rhymes and two refrains, structured in five tercets and a concluding quatrain.

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  • Form

    • Villanelle
  • Variants

    • Villanelles
  • Broader Terms

  • Closely Matching Concepts from Other Schemes

  • Sources

    • found: New Princeton encyclopedia of poetry and poetics, 2012(villanelle: from It. villanella, a rustic song, villano, a peasant). As known today, a 19-line poem with two rhymes and two refrain lines, in the form AJoA 2abAj abA2 abA¡ abA2 abA¡ A2, where capital letters indicate refrains. Also distinctive is the quatrain occurring at the end of a series of tercets, the extra line in the last stanza furnishing a sense of closure to the repetitive pattern with a conclusive couplet)
    • found: Poets.org, viewed Dec. 26, 2012(Poetic Form: Villanelle--The highly structured villanelle is a nineteen-line poem with two repeating rhymes and two refrains. The form is made up of five tercets followed by a quatrain. The first and third lines of the opening tercet are repeated alternately in the last lines of the succeeding stanzas; then in the final stanza, the refrain serves as the poem's two concluding lines. Using capitals for the refrains and lowercase letters for the rhymes, the form could be expressed as: A1 b A2 / a b A1 / a b A2 / a b A1 / a b A2 / a b A1 A2. Strange as it may seem for a poem with such a rigid rhyme scheme, the villanelle did not start off as a fixed form.)
  • General Notes

    • Nineteen-line poems with two repeating rhymes and two refrains, structured in five tercets and a concluding quatrain.
  • Change Notes

    • 2014-12-01: new
    • 2015-12-22: revised
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