blank verse

Unrhymed iambic pentameter

Blank verse is poetry written with regular metrical but unrhymed lines, almost always in iambic pentameter. It has been described as "probably the most common and influential form that English poetry has taken since the 16th century", and Paul Fussell has estimated that "about three quarters of all English poetry is in blank verse".The first known use of blank verse in the English language was by Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey in his translation of the Æneid (composed c. 1540; published posthumously, 1554–1557). He may have been inspired by the Latin original as classical Latin verse did not use rhyme; or possibly he was inspired by Ancient Greek verse or the Italian verse form of versi sciolti, both of which also did not use rhyme. The play Arden of Faversham (around 1590 by an unknown author) is a notable example of end-stopped blank verse.
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