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half-rhyme


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An imperfect rhyme (also known by other names including near rhyme and slant rhyme) in which the final consonants of stressed syllables agree but the vowel sounds do not match; thus a form of consonance (cape/deep). A special form of half-rhyme known as pararhyme employs ‘rich’ consonance, in which the preceding consonants also correspond (cape/keep). Employed regularly in early Icelandic, Irish, and Welsh poetry, it appeared only as an occasional poetic licence in English verse until the late 19th century, when Emily Dickinson and G. M. Hopkins made frequent use of it. The example provided by W. B. Yeats and Wilfred Owen has encouraged its increasingly widespread use in English since the early 20th century. See also eye rhyme.

Subjects: Literature


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