poulter's measure


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Related to poulter's measure: Fourteener

poul·ter's measure

(pōl′tərz)
n.
A metrical pattern employing couplets in which the first line is in iambic hexameter and the second is in iambic heptameter.

[From obsolete poulter, a poultry dealer (from the practice of giving a few extra eggs in the dozen), from Middle English pulter, from Old French pouletier; see poultry.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
This pattern is very close to the "poulter's measure" defined by the sixteenth-century poet George Gascoigne--an alternating pattern of 12 and 14 syllables.
We can see Barrett Browning as either breaking up the long poulter's measure by chopping the alexandrine in half, or as extending short meter by merging its last two lines into one.
In this reading, Barrett Browning's altered poulter's measure adds yet another tempo-another rhythm to pile onto the patterns of state and family, funeral bells, and the sudden loss of childhood.
For example, like "The Young Queen," "Victoria's Tears" both evokes and refuses poulter's measure and its truncated heir, short meter, but it does not do this in quite the same way.
If he is up for it in what will be a demanding week weather-wise, then the likeable Scouser has Ian Poulter's measure on all recent counts and should not be the rag in Sporting's match-up.
Dougherty took Poulter's measure in the PGA Championship (20th to Poults' missed cut), the US Open (seventh to 36th) and Munich (26th to another missed cut) and it looks as if Poulter is having problems living up to all the hype which follows this Beau Brummel of golf around the globe.
If it goes into a second edition, I hope that the publishers will restore the missing line that would make sense of a quotation from John Carey on page ix and that the horribly misquoted passage from Pope on page 74 receives the ministrations of someone who can tell iambic pentameter from Poulter's measure.
Even a poem like Gascoigne's "In prime of lustie yeares," composed in the deadly Poulter's Measure, acquires an unexpected suavity and lyricism when sung to the "Tinternell" melody that Gascoigne specified.