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Rhyme in The Maldive Shark

Rhyme Examples in The Maldive Shark:

Text of the Poem

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"But liquidly glide on his ghastly flank ..."   (Text of the Poem)

This line contains some notable examples of internal rhyme, both assonance—the repetition of vowel sounds—and consonance—the repetition of consonant sounds. The phrase “liquidly glide” recycles three l sounds and three i sounds, two soft and one hard. The phrase “ghastly flank” repeats l sounds and soft a sounds. It also connects the consonant pair g and k, g being a voiced k. Melville often experimented with musical and sonic effects in his writings, verse and prose alike.

"How alert in attendance be. ..."   (Text of the Poem)

“The Maldive Shark” follows a metrical scheme known as common meter, in which the lines alternate between four beats and three beats. The rhymes follow a standard ABCB scheme. The rhyme and meter give the poem a light, sing-song tone.

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