Metrical Complexity in Christina Rossetti's Verse

N.A.J. Fabb, M. Halle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Bracketed Grid Theory interprets metricality as fundamentally a matter of counting syllables, with rhythm derived from counting. Syllables are grouped into pairs or triplets, which in turn are grouped, thus building a scansion from the line. The article compares the traditional approach to meter with its inventory of feet as building-blocks combined to make a scansion of a line which expresses the rhythms of its performance. It applies this theory to a strict iambic meter and a loose iambic meter, each used by Rossetti, and shows that though the number of syllables in the line varies in the latter it is nevertheless scanned by a counting system. The article shows that in the poem "Up-hill" Rossetti uses a strict meter to mimic the rhythmic effect of a loose meter. The essay formulates a theory of metrical mimicry because it distinguishes between underlying meter and performed rhythm.
LanguageEnglish
Pages91-114
Number of pages23
JournalCollege Literature
Volume33
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2006

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performance
Verse
Rhythm
Iambic Metre
Scansion
Poem
Grid
Mimicry
Triplet

Keywords

  • Rossetti
  • iambic meter
  • rhythym
  • Bracketed Grid Theory
  • metrical
  • poetry

Cite this

Fabb, N.A.J. ; Halle, M. / Metrical Complexity in Christina Rossetti's Verse. In: College Literature. 2006 ; Vol. 33, No. 2. pp. 91-114.
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Metrical Complexity in Christina Rossetti's Verse. / Fabb, N.A.J.; Halle, M.

In: College Literature, Vol. 33, No. 2, 2006, p. 91-114.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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