Heroic Couplets Definition

A traditional form for English poetry, commonly used for epic and narrative poetry; it refers to poems constructed from a sequence of rhyming pairs of iambic pentameter lines.


A heroic couplet is a type of poem that is written in iambic pentameter, which is a line with ten syllables and contains two rhyming lines. Heroic couplet poetry is more often written as a way of expressing a harrowing tale of adventure in a strong and impacting way. Heroic couplets are one of the favored forms of reciting tales and powerful meanings with its two rhyming lines. The iambic pentameter gives a beautiful flow and the expression behind the words hold more energy and passion. They became a form of poetry to express the dramatic and fantastic world and lives of people, fictitious or real.

The creator of heroic couplets is unknown, but the first widely recognized use was by a man named Geoffrey Chaucer of the 14th century. Since then, more poets have taken pen to paper choosing heroic couplets as their way to express the grandeur that they write about. 

Heroic Couplets Poem Example

A frequently-cited example illustrating the use of heroic couplets is this passage from Cooper's Hill by John Denham, part of his description of the Thames:

O could I flow like thee, and make thy stream
My great example, as it is my theme!
Though deep, yet clear, though gentle, yet not dull,
Strong without rage, without o'erflowing full.

Top 5 Heroic Couplets Poem Examples

PMPoem TitlePoetFormCategories
Necromancer (The Haunting Continues...) De La Keur, Aleera Heroic Coupletsdeath, fantasy, imaginationdark, dark,
Sailors Follow Cheeseman, Daniel Heroic Coupletsseastars,
The Blood Stained Bridge Britt, Christopher Thor Heroic Coupletsallegory,
WRITTEN IN THE SAND van Breda, Kim Heroic Coupletsanalogy, introspection, proposal,
Premium Member Poem DEDICATION TO MY BROTHER-- ROBERT LINDLEY WHAT IS TRUE BROTHERLY LOVE Lee Sr., James Edward Heroic Coupletsappreciation, blessing, brother,

No standard definition found.

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