Rhyme Schemes

Rhyme Schemes stem from poetry and represent patterns in the sounds of words. This style of writing consists of rhyming different phrases from line to line. You can see rhyme schemes in almost every popular song, poetry, and more. We have plenty of articles that showcase rhyme scheme examples for different genres. 

In this article, we’ll go over various rhyme scheme patterns used in poetry. If you’re an artist or writer, learning these particular techniques would give you extra tools that’ll take your art to the next level. We’ll go over the rhyme schemes of Ballade, Coupled, Monorhyme, Triplet, and others. Check out our rhyme scheme example page for more real-world applications. 

poetry written in ink on a rustled paper

What Is A Rhyme Scheme in Poetry?

Poetry has been around for ages, dating back to cavemen. These techniques help captivate listeners into hearing amazing stories that happen over time. Early shamans used rhyme schemes to portray historical events and supernatural subjects. Learn how people use these patterns to sway through and attract more users to your craft. 

Rhyme Scheme Definition

The definition of rhyme scheme is the ordered pattern of rhymes at the ends of lines of a poem. Writers use letters that interchange with each other to create similar sounds. While the definition may be specific, the application can differ significantly. Some rhyme schemes don’t actually rhyme with each other. 

poems on a notebook

Alternate Rhyme

The Alternate Rhyme is referred to as the ABAB technique in poetry. The pattern found in this style is when the first line rhymes with the third, while the second line rhymes with the fourth. You can read famous written examples of Alternate rhyme from authors Agnes Wathall, Robert Frost, and William Blake. Typically, this type of rhyme scheme is used in genres of music. 


Ballade is a core poetic structure normally consistings of eight-line stanzas and an envoy. The pattern for this rhyme scheme is ABABBCBC BCBC. The last ‘BCBC’ is the envoy, which serves as a summation. Ballade comes from French poetry, and famous poets, including William Shakespeare, Edgar Allen Poe, and Algernon Charles Swinburn, have used the technique. 

writer about to write some rhyme schemes on a notebook

Coupled Rhyme

Coupled Rhyme Schemes have a pattern in which rhymes are paired together. This style of poetry follows an AABBCC format and can be quickly learned. A rhyming couplet is most prevalent in sonnets and limericks. You can also find plenty of examples of coupled rhymes in children’s books. 


The Monorhyme rhyme scheme features a technique with the same end sound for multiple lines. Filling up the stanza in this way is more common in Latin poetry. You can also find examples of Monorhyme in musical genres. For example, a typical poem with this structure has a format like AAA BBB CCC. 

Enclosed Rhyme

Enclosed Rhyme Schemes are used in various poems and songs. The format for this style of poetry is ABBA, where the first and fourth lines rhyme and the second and third. You can also check out our rhyme scheme example page to see how it works. 

Simple Four-Line Rhyme

Try the simple four-line rhyme if you’d like to take a straightforward approach to poetry. This scheme follows a pattern of ABCB, which links stanzas together while adding flavor. Famous poems and music use the four-line rhyme scheme. Learn more about this interlocking technique on this page. 


The Triplet rhyme scheme is similar to a monorhyme with a similar ending across many lines. This style of poetry is rare to see, but many authors have pulled it off. Another word for the Triplet rhyme scheme is Tercet, which consists of the line stanzas. 

Terza Rima

Terza Rima is known to be used as a way to continue the narrative forward. The rhyme scheme interlinks together and delivers in tercets. Usually consisting of 10 lines, Terza Rima rhyme scheme presents itself as ABA BCB CDC, etc. Famous authors who used this rhyme scheme include Nicholas Breton, Lord Tennyson, Susan Mitchell, and Harvey Stanbrough. 


Villanelle poems are repetitive in nature and are hard to master for individuals. The rhyme scheme was used during the Renaissance for dancing songs in Spain and Italy. After the 19th century, Villanelle poetry style became popular among English poets. This rhyme scheme is formatted with five tercets that end with a quatrain (four-line stanza). An example of what it’ll follow is ABA ABA ABA ABA ABA ABAA.  


A unique rhyme scheme is the Limerick because of its five-line stanzas. Typically this style follows an AABBA format and is common in stories and tales. You can find examples of Limerick rhyme schemes in kids’ books and professional pieces of written work. Algernon Charles Swinburne showcases evidence of this pattern beautifully. 

Want a Free Instagram Shoutout?

Claim a FREE Instagram Shoutout simply by visiting our page below! Receive massive reach on our hip hop Instagram page now. You may also be featured on our Instagram Lives for FREE! Click below.

%d bloggers like this: