Share this entry

Share this page

ottava rima

Line breaks: ot¦tava rima
Pronunciation: /ɒˌtɑːvə ˈriːmə

Definition of ottava rima in English:


[mass noun]
A form of poetry consisting of stanzas of eight lines of ten or eleven syllables, rhyming abababcc: I wrote the answer in ottava rima
More example sentences
  • In the fifth assignment we finally stared metre directly in the face: the assignment was to write a sonnet, terza rima or ottava rima, in iambic pentameter.
  • Shelley composed this playful work of 78 stanzas in ottava rima within the space of three days.
  • The portrait also contains sheets of simulated verse to emphasize that he specialized in terza rima and ottava rima.


late 18th century: from Italian, literally 'eighth rhyme'.

Definition of ottava rima in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day coxcomb
Pronunciation: ˈkɒkskəʊm
a vain and conceited man; a dandy