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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Iambic'

Iambic Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    iambic adj : of or consisting of iambs; "iambic pentameter" n : a verse line consisting of iambs
Iambic Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Iambic \I*am"bic\, a. [L. iambicus, Gr. ?: cf. F. iambique.]
  1. (Pros.) Consisting of a short syllable followed by a long one, or of an unaccented syllable followed by an accented; as, an iambic foot.
  2. Pertaining to, or composed of, iambics; as, an iambic verse; iambic meter. See Lambus.
Iambic Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Iambic \I*am"bic\, n.
  1. (Pros.) (a) An iambic foot; an iambus. (b) A verse composed of iambic feet. Note: The following couplet consists of iambic verses. Thy gen- | ius calls | thee not | to pur- | chase fame In keen | iam- | bics, but | mild an- | agram. --Dryden.
  2. A satirical poem (such poems having been anciently written in iambic verse); a satire; a lampoon.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Iambic'

An iamb or iambus is a metrical foot used in various types of poetry. Originally the term referred to one of the feet of the quantitative meter of classical Greek prosody: a short syllable followed by a long syllable (as in delay). This terminology was adopted in the description of accentual-syllabic verse in English, where it refers to a foot comprising an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable (as in a-bove).

The word iamb comes from Iambe, a Greek minor goddess of verse, especially scurrilous, ribald humour. In ancient Greece iambus was mainly a satirical poem, a lampoon, which did not automatically imply a particular metrical type. Iambic metre took its name from being characteristic of iambi, not vice versa.

In accentual-syllabic verse we could describe an iamb as a foot that goes like this:

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