A refrain is a verse, a line, a set, or a group of lines found at the conclusion of a stanza or when a poem is split into sections. It came from France, where it is known as "reiterated," which meaning "to repeat." A refrain is a poetry technique that repeats itself at regular intervals throughout multiple stanzas. The effect is to give the impression that we are hearing one continuous voice speaking through the poem.
Some examples of refrains include:
John Donne's Holy Sonnet XIV has three refrains: "No man is an island entire of itself; / Every man is a piece of the continent, / A part of the main; Any man's death diminishes me, / For I am involved in mankind; / And therefore never send to know / What harm may be done to another; / For though they cannot feel for me, / Their sense would hurt them like my own.
Shakespeare used this device frequently, especially in sonnets. One example is Sonnet 18, where the poet tells his love that he does not want to die until they have kissed once more. He ends the poem on a hopeful note by saying that even if she sends him away, he will still love her all the same.
Katherine Philips wrote many poems during the early 17th century.
A refrain (from Vulgar Latin refringere, "to repeat," and subsequently from Old French refraindre) is a repeated phrase or lines in music or poetry; the "chorus" of a song. The term can also be used for a similar structure in other arts.
It is used to describe a portion of a song that is sung repeatedly by the audience or participants during the course of the song. This might be done to encourage them to sing along or as a call-and-response mechanism between the singer and the audience.
The term "refrain" may also be applied to other types of sections of songs. A bridge is a refrain that occurs at the beginning or end of a section of a song and often contains a change of meter or key. An interlude is another form of refrain that is inserted intermittently within the context of a longer work or performance. These forms are especially common in classical music but can also appear in pop songs.
Finally, the term "refrain" may be applied to short quotations or lyrics that are included in poems or songs as insertions or embellishments. These may serve to highlight certain words or phrases or to give extra emphasis to particular sentences.
In music, a refrain can be either a vocal or an instrumental passage that is repeated throughout the song.
Abstain. Noun Refrain definition (Entry 2 of 2) 1: a repeated phrase or verse in a lyric or song, particularly at the conclusion of each stanza or division: chorus Also included is the musical setting of a refrain. 2: a remark or statement that is regularly repeated by someone who shows an interest in you.
The word "refrain" comes from a French term meaning "to bend the knee." When used in reference to church services, it means a short prayer or hymn sung at the end of each division of the sermon or ritual. The refrain is important because it gives the congregation time to reflect on what they have heard and to prepare themselves for the next part of the ceremony.
During the Renaissance period, musicians began to set poems to music, which led to the creation of poetic airs. A poet would write a poem about a courtly love theme, for example. As he did not want his identity to be revealed, the poet would place his name at the beginning of the piece and call it a "refrain." This is why the refrain is also known as a "air."
There are two types of refrains: single and multiple. With a single refrain, the same words are repeated at the end of all the divisions of the ceremony or sermon. This can be done with either a melody or text.
A refrain is a phrase, line, or group of lines that is repeated at regular intervals throughout a poem, usually at the conclusion of each stanza. Refrains can be found in the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead as well as rudimentary tribal chants. In music, a refrain is a section of a song that is often sung by a solo performer or small chorus.
There are two types of refrains: monothematic and polythemic. With a monothetic refrain, the same theme is repeated throughout the work. For example, "The Star-Spangled Banner" is a monothetic patriotic melody with a single theme that is repeated at the end of each stanza. "God Save the Queen" is another example of a monothetic patriotic melody; however, instead of America, Britain is being praised in this case. A polythematic refrain has multiple themes that are repeated throughout the work. An example would be "Oh, Susanna," a polyphonic hymn that has two different themes used repeatedly throughout the piece.
Refrains are important elements in storytelling songs because they help to connect the various sections of the song and give it cohesiveness. They can also provide contrast by repeating a theme slightly altered from the previous one, thus creating variation within the song.
Monothetic and polythemic refrains can both be found in stories.