Hebrew poets in Italy tended to embellish their poems and sonnets with a biblical or rabbinic quotation. They would choose one in keeping with the poetic metre, providing the poetic line with its rhyme. They sought to multiply such rhyming quotations, appending them as the final flourish to the end of the poem and using them to emphasize strophic demarcation and prosodic blank lines. This practice was considered a significant embellishment of the rhyme. The poetics that insisted on various other refinements — a rich and refreshing rhyme, neither hackneyed nor morphological — preferred the rhyming quotation more than other devices, and for its sake, in the hour of need, would quite willingly forgo all the rest. The poets even took this one step further. In order to facilitate the rhyming quotation, they were willing to render their poems in unusual quantitative metres. In sonnets, a form in which prosodic rules were generally and assiduously preserved, the poets opted to deviate from the conventional endecasillabo, employing other syllabic metres consonant with the intertwining quotation. In this fashion the rhyming quotation generated a breakthrough from rigid poetic structures, diversifying the metre, and, in sonnets, highlighting the Hebrew nature of the poem within the general Italian contour.
|Translated title of the contribution||Rhyming the Bible into Hebrew Poetry: The Embellishment of Rhyme in the Early Hebrew Sonnet|
|Number of pages||15|
|Journal||מחקרי ירושלים בספרות עברית|
|State||Published - 1992|