Caesura and enjambment (sometimes known as enjambement) are two approaches that are widely used to explain how poetry employs pauses. A caesura is a pause that is added to a line of poetry, whereas enjambment is the removal of a pause at the end of a line to allow two or more lines to be read together. Understanding Caesura (Contents).
Both are alternatives to coming to a halt at the end of a line. Many great poems contain both caesuras and enjambs.
Enjambment was first used by the Greek poet Pindar (c. 518 B.C.-438 B.C.), who was famous for his poetic competitions. His poems were performed by musicians as part of an annual festival held in honor of Apollo. During a performance, if a musician spotted the word "enjamb" in Pindar's poem he would stop playing until instructed to continue. This way, the audience could join in on the last line of each stanza section (known as a peristasis). Enjambment is important because it allows poets to expand their works into multiple parts without having to write full stops or commas to indicate where one part ends and the next begins.
In English literature, William Shakespeare is usually credited with first using enjambment effectively in his sonnets. The last line of many of these poems often ends with a preposition ("to", "from", "with", etc.) followed by a noun or a verb to form a sentence that can stand alone.
Enjambment is the continuing of a sentence from one line of a poem to the next without any specified stop, regardless of the break in the line, and can even span numerous lines or stanzas. This can be achieved by repeating words or phrases or by using synonyms. Enjambment is common in free verse.
It can also mean the breaking off of the last word or phrase in a sentence or clause and starting on the next word or phrase without any signal; this happens when speaking or writing quickly and does not allow for proper punctuation. For example: "The dog was barking." The speaker stops talking after "barking" and starts again with "the". This type of enjambment is called interjectional enjambment.
Enjambment is useful in poetry because it helps create a sense of continuity between the lines of a poem and creates a feeling of movement as the reader reads along. Without enjambment, each line would be complete on its own and there would be no connection between them.
In classical poetry, enjambment was often used as a technique of persuasion because it makes it difficult to stop reading the poem and encourages the reader to read on even if they do not want to hear the end of the story or see what happens next.
A caesura is a pause in a discourse, a verse line, or a song. A caesura usually indicates complete quiet, but not for long. A caesura is a brief halt or stoppage. A caesura is a musical notation signifying a gap in the music that can be used by a trumpet player to collect his breath.
There are two types of caesuras: internal and external. An internal caesura occurs within a section of a piece, while an external caesura ends one section and starts another. Internal caesuras are often marked by a slash (//) on the score paper. External caesuras are indicated by a full stop (.).
Internal caesuras are useful when separating sections of a work that have similar moods or themes. For example, an internal caesura can be placed between the recitative and the aria in a classical opera. It allows the singer time to recover from the intense emotions of the recitative without interrupting the dramatic tension of the aria. Similarly, an internal caesura can be used before a new section of a work is introduced, allowing the audience to become familiar with its characters and atmosphere before being thrown into the excitement of the new scene.
External caesuras are useful when separating sections of a work that do not belong together thematically or stylistically.
It can also be utilized to keep a stronger beat than constant end-stopping. A poet can easily draw the reader along from one line to the next by employing enjambment and establishing a quick rhythm or tempo for a poem. This can be done by repeating words or phrases or even whole lines (syllables) in order to keep the reader interested and intrigued.
Enjambment is when a word, phrase, or sentence ends with little or no punctuation. It can also be referred to as "unstopped" speech. For example, if I were to say something like "I went to the store yesterday," you would know that I stopped talking after the first sentence ended because there is no punctuation following it.
However, enjambment isn't only used to signify the lack of punctuation at the end of a sentence or phrase. It can be used effectively in writing to keep the reader interested and to provide variety in the rhythm of your language. By using repeated words or phrases or even whole sentences, you can keep the reader's attention while still allowing them to hear the natural flow of the language. This can be useful in poems where you want to accent certain words or phrases or even whole lines (syllables). By using enjambment, you can do this without completely stopping the flow of conversation or narration.