Also found in: Thesaurus, Wikipedia.


 (ŏk-tăm′ĭ-tər) also oc·tom·e·ter (-tŏm′-)
1. Verse written in lines of eight metrical feet.
2. A single line of such verse.


(Poetry) prosody a verse line consisting of eight metrical feet


(ɒkˈtæm ɪ tər)
1. consisting of eight measures or feet.
2. an octameter verse.
[1840–50; < Late Latin < Greek oktámetros]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.octameter - a verse line having eight metrical feet
verse line, verse - a line of metrical text
Mentioned in ?
References in periodicals archive ?
47-56) In "Everlasting Spring," a nostalgic poem of partial reconciliation in octameter quatrains copied in Jane's notebooks but never published, a rebuffed suitor imagines an ancient painting of lovers whose love, unlike that of the present, "nought ended, nought perfected, but [remains] all wrapped in peace and calm." In the harsh present the poet faces, by contrast, a "Love that cannot love me":
The last columns of [section] 43 are composed in tetrameter, heptameter, and octameter verse.
(21) Brathwaite's assertion that McKay "allowed himself to be imprisoned in the pentameter" notwithstanding, Constab Ballads employs an array of metrical and prosodic forms--couplets, quatrains, sestets, and octaves in trimeter, tetrameter, pentameter, even octameter, many regularly iambic, others more regularly irregular--and often injects unsettling vernacular rhythms into the regularities of English prosody.
Carpenter's parody packs into ten lines of iambic octameter a fiercely instructive (and hilariously funny) criticism of several trends in recent biographical "scholarship."
In t he final instance, Foxe replaces one term for the Mass, "idolatry," with three: "superstitious, wicked, and no better than idolatry." Careful readers will note that the line scans well as trochaic octameter. Foxe may, again, have added this for the sake of the metrical cadence, or in order to underscore and intensify Askew's charge against the Mass.
If a single line of a poem contains only one foot, it is called monometer; two feet, dimeter; three feet, trimeter; four feet, tetrameter; five feet, pentameter; six feet, hexameter; seven feet, heptameter; eight feet, octameter. More than six, however, is rare.
The poem is written in the galliambics of Catullus, Roman poet of the first-century BCE, but our British poet of the nineteenth is careful to specify that his lines, which are unrhymed trochaic octameter more or less, are only a "far-off echo" of Catullus.