We use cookies to help us improve your experience with us. Several passages in the book of Psalms begin with letters of the alphabet, forming an abecedarian acrostic (an acrostic that spells out the entire alphabet). Later, acrostics were commonly used in medieval literature to encode a secret message—for example, to disclose the name of the poet or the name of the poem's subject, especially in cases where the subject of the poem was a secret lover. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our. In an acrostic poem, the first letter of each line spells a word. Please support this website by adding us to your whitelist in your ad blocker. In "The Vane Sisters," a short story which is about a professor who becomes fascinated with acrostics, the first letters of each word in the story's final paragraph spell out the phrase, "Icicles by Cynthia; Meter from me, Sybil." Acrostics are in some ways similar to acronyms, in that both involve the isolation of individual letters to make a new word. It is this name that is spelled out by the nine letters that start the nine lines. Try to find words that match up with each letter of your keyword. In addition, acrostics are often used to spell out names or meanings that are associated with the text but that have not been said outright—this can be used for comedic effect, to tell a secret, or to give supplemental information. Examples of Acrostic in Literature Example #1 Acrostic by Lewis Carroll. This is an example of acrostic being used in just one stanza of a poem—the remainder of the poem does not contain acrostics. The most common and simple form of an acrostic poem is where the first letters of each line spell out the word or phrase. Examples of the Acrostic Form Don’t be afraid to change things around. But, there are many who enjoy the challenge of writing in alignment with a specific guide word. By continuing to use our site, you are accepting such use. Example of an acrostic poem using the end of lines: Finally, the more difficult type is where letters in the middle of the acrostic spell out the word or phrase. PDF downloads of all 1372 LitCharts literature guides, and of every new one we publish. The “acrostic” is most commonly associated with poetry, but it might also prose. One word is on the left side of the text and one on the right. I could isolate, consciously, little. This poem is quite clever as it is a description of the poet’s sister, but it is also, in part, discusses the writing of the poem itself. See more ideas about Acrostic, Acrostic poem, Poems about girls. Writers choose to write in the acrostic form in order to add another layer of meaning to the text. This poem by Lewis Carroll spells out the names of three sisters: Lorina, Alice, and Edith. While acrostics are most often found in poetry, Vladimir Nabokov's short story "The Vane Sisters" contains an example of an acrostic formed with prose. An acrostic poem is one in which a certain feature -- for example, the first letter -- from every line combines to spell out a message -- usually the name of the subject, for instance the person to whom the acrostic poem is dedicated. However, acrostics and acronyms are not the same, for two reasons: The earliest examples of acrostics can be found in the Hebrew Bible. The acrostic is a form in which names or words are spelled out through the first letter of each line. This type of acrostic is simply called an acrostic. Brainstorm: What thoughts come to mind when you consider your topic? ‘Love not’ — thou sayest it in so sweet a way: In vain those words from thee or L. E. L. Ah! This is when there is no single line of letters that forms a word or phrase. This is a kind of poem in which words are spelled by both the lines’ first and last letters. While some of the poems are serious, others are more comical. Here are two examples to illustrate the poetic form. In many cases, it's easy to recognize the word being spelled in the acrostic because the important letters are capitalized or bolded and they fall at the beginning of each line. From the creators of SparkNotes, something better. In the third stanza, the initial letters of each line form an acrostic that spells the word "HEAR," which underscores the speaker's fixation on the sounds in his environment. It is through advertising that we are able to contribute to charity. The first examples of non-abecedarian acrostics come from ancient Greece, where the Erythraean Sybil (an oracle from the ancient Greek town of Erythrae) was known to write her prophesies on leaves and arrange them so that the first letters would spell out a word. An abecedarian is an acrostic in which the poet uses the alphabet as a guide rather than a word or phrase. Acrostic Examples. For example, some acrostics spell out words using neither the first nor last letters of a line, but rather by emphasizing letters in different places. by @niftygnomes. Her inept acrostics, maudlin evasions, theopathies—every recollection formed ripples of mysterious meaning. Name Poem Generator. Detailed explanations, analysis, and citation info for every important quote on LitCharts. A less common and slightly more difficult type of an acrostic poem is where the last letter of each line spells out the word or phrase. This poem, like many pieces of acrostic poetry, was written with a younger audience in mind. Share your poem with someone you trust. abOut 1948 or 50 the number of people                                              liVing                              all at oncE        equaled the numbeR who had ever lived at any time all added together                                        the Present as far as numbers                                             gO    became equal to the Past        we are now in the fUture              it is something eLse                                             hAs                                               iT doubled                                        has It quadrupled                                all we nOw                                             kNow for sure is                                   the deAd                                       are iN the minority    they are outnumbereD by us who're living                                         whAt does this do to                                          ouR        way of communicaTing... Acrostics are used to add new dimension to a poem or other text.

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