Cross rhyme

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The cross rhyme or alternating rhyme is a rhyme form in the verse , in which the odd-numbered verses rhyme with each other and also the even- numbered verses in a (usually four-line ) stanza . The rhyme scheme is therefore the result of the quatrain [abab], with the six-liner [ababab]etc. Example ( Conrad Ferdinand Meyer Zwei Segel , 1882):

[a]   Illuminating two sails
[b]   The deep blue bay!
[a]   Two sails swelling
[b]   Too easy escape!

[c]   Like one in the winds
[d]   Arches and moves
[c]   Will the feeling too
[d]   The other's excited.

[e]   Desires to have one
[f]   The other goes quickly
[e]   Asks one to rest
[f]   His companion also rests.

An example of a poem with a quadruple cross rhyme ([abababab]) is the Latin Ave verum .

If only the even-numbered verses rhyme ([xaxa]) this is known as half rhyme or cross rhyme . This rhyme order appears often in folk songs . Example ( Heinrich Heine my heart, my heart is sad ):

[x]   My heart, my heart is sad
[a]   But May shines merry;
[x]   I stand leaning against the linden tree
[a]   Up on the old bastion.

The cross rhyme is one of the most common rhyme orders besides the pair rhyme . It can be found in the four-line folk song strophe , the vagante strophe , the Hildebrand strophe , the romances strophe and as part of larger rhymes such as the Luther strophe .