The Sonnet

The Sonnet

A sonnet is a poem with 14 lines, invented in 13th-century Italy and perfected by Petrarch. The Italian sonnet is divided into an octave and a sestet. The octave states a problem, and the sestet gives its resolution, with a clear break between the two sections. When the sonnet reached England in the 16th century—chiefly through translations of Petrarch’s works—poets changed its meter, rhyme scheme, and line grouping, creating the Elizabethan sonnet. What is the origin of the term “sonnet”? More… Discuss

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