A quatrain poem consists of verses consisting of four lines or an entire poem consisting of four lines. It is not as simple as just any four lines. The lines must have a rhythm and rhyme to them. This rhyme and rhythm and different for different types of quatrains. The most common kinds of quatrain are:
- BalladStanza – Its rhyme scheme is abab with iambic tetrameter.
- Envelope Stanza – Its rhyme scheme is abba with iambic tetrameter.
- Goethe Stanza – Its rhyme scheme is abab but no meter.
- Italian Quatrain – Its rhyme scheme is abba with iambic pentameter.
- Hymnal Quatrain – This multi stanza contains three alternating rhymes with iambic trimester and iambic tetrameter. Rhyme scheme is a4 b3 c4 b3.
- Elegiac Stanza – This uses abab rhyme scheme with iambic pentameter.
- Memoriam Stanza – This uses abba rhyme scheme with iambic tetrameter.
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Some examples of quatrains are