Rhyme Desk

What is rhyme?

Rhyme is a connection of sound between rhyming syllables of two words. Rhyming syllables are word endings which start from stressed syllable. Examples:

love (rhyming syllable is "love"),
feeling (rhyming syllables are "feel-ing"),
expanding (rhyming syllables are "pand-ing"),
understand (rhyming syllable is "stand").

There are three categories of rhymes:

  1. masculine - a rhyme where final syllable of word is stressed.
  2. feminine - a rhyme where second last syllable of word is stressed.
  3. dactylic - a rhyme where third last syllable of word is stressed.

Perfect rhymes

Perfect rhyme is a rhyme where rhyming syllables of two words share same vowel sounds and same consonant sounds after stressed vowel and different sound before stressed vowel (see "Identities" for more details on last point). Examples:

day - bay,
understand - hand,
just - trust,
remember - december.


Identities are same as perfect rhymes with one important difference - they have same sound before stressed vowel. Identity does not create tension/resolution of sound and is less suitable for poetry and songs than perfect rhymes. Examples:

fuse - confuse (identity ), fuse - shoes (perfect rhyme),
love - glove (identity), love - above (perfect rhyme),
lease - police (identity), lease - peace (perfect rhyme).

Soft rhymes

There are words that have primary stress and secondary stress. Soft rhyme is a rhyme where primary stress in one word rhymes with secondary stress of another word. Examples:

fate - separate(se-pa-rate, "se" is primary stress, "rate" is secondary stress),
food - multitude (mu-ti-tude, "mu" is primary stress, "tude" is secondary stress),
gloom - bedroom (bed-room, "bed" is primary stress, "room" is secondary stress).

Consonance rhymes

Consonance is a consonant rhyme. Rhyming syllables have at least one different vowel sound and same final consonant. This creates tension (different vowel) followed by resolution (same consonant). Examples:

glad - bed,
smart - hurt,
together - brother,
because - suppose.

Assonance rhymes

Assonance is a vowel rhyme. Rhyming syllables share same vowel sounds and at least one different consonant. This creates feeling of partial openness. Feminine rhymes of this type are usually stronger than masculine rhymes. Examples:

hide - light,
man - jam,
future - rooster,
only - holy.

Mixed rhyme

Mixed rhyme is a rhyme with one different but similar sounding vowel and consonant. This type of rhyme happens only in feminine rhymes (two or more syllable rhymes). This is loosest type of rhyme. Use it in case of absence of suitable rhymes of other types. Example:

remember - summer,
together - pitcher,
forever - suffer,
person - compassion.

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