Petrarchan sonnet  A sonnet is a fixed form of lyric poetry that consists of fourteen lines, usually written in iambic pentameter. The Petrarchan sonnet is one of the two basic types of sonnet (the other is the English sonnet), also known as the Italian sonnet. The Petrarchan sonnet is divided into an octave, which typically rhymes abbaabba, and a sestet, which may have varying rhyme schemes. Common rhyme patterns in the sestet are cdecde, cdcdcd, and cdccdc. Very often the octave presents a situation, attitude, or problem that the sestet comments upon or resolves, as in John Keats's "On First Looking into Chapman's Homer." (See also, sonnet.)

The definitions in this glossary were adapted from The Bedford Introduction to Literature, Sixth Edition, by Michael Meyer