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Poetry Terms Beginning With 'W'

Poetry Terms - W. This is a comprehensive resource of poetry terms beginning with the letter W.


Poetry Terminology by Letter


War Poetry

Definition

Term (normally) applied to poetry produced during the First World War by poets such as Edward Thomas, Siegfried Sassoon, Wilfred Owen, Rupert Brooke, Edmund Blunden and Robert Graves etc. Thomas and Owen were both killed in action.

Weak Ending

Definition

Where a word or syllable at the end of a line of verse is stressed metrically but is unstressed in ordinary speech.

Well Versed

Definition

Somebody proficient in the rules of prosody.

Welsh Forms

Definition

Wales has always had a rich bardic tradition and can boast 24 separate poetic forms: 12 awdl forms, 4  cywydd forms and 8 englyn forms. See also cynghanedd and Eisteddfod.

Wheel

Definition

See bob and wheel.

Willing Suspension of Disbelief

Definition

Term coined by S.T.Coleridge in his Biographia Literaria which states that readers and/or theatre audiences need to overlook certain literary/theatrical conventions in order to fully engage with the work in question.

Wit

Definition

During the Renaissance wit was synonymous with intelligence and wisdom. During the 17th century it became more closely associated with fancy. One of the main themes of Pope's An  Essay on Criticism is wit and he concludes that:

Wordsworthian

Definition

In the manner/style of William Wordsworth. See also egotistical sublime.

Wrenched Accent

Definition

Occurs when the metrical stress or accent forces a change in the natural word accent. This can occur due to a poet's lack of skill, but is also characteristic of folk ballads.