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Poetry Guide: Shakespearean sonnet

The Shakespearean sonnet, also called the Elizabethan or English sonnet, is a sonnet comprising three quatrains and a final couplet in iambic pentameter with the rhyme scheme abab cdcd efef gg.

It was derived from the older Petrarchan or Italian sonnet. Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, created early examples in the 16th century, but the form is strongly associated with William Shakespeare because of his authorship of a famed collection published in 1609 (see Shakespeare's sonnets).

See also