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Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry Italian Verse Italy is the birthplace of the sonnet, probably the single most popular and well known verse form of the poetic world. That is probably all one needs to say about the importance of Italian prosody in the literary world but there is much much more. Italian poetry slowly developed after the fall of the Roman Empire. It was influenced by the power struggle between the Vatican and the secular government, French and Occitan literature (the French language is a century older than the Italian language) and the spiritual writings of Frances of Assisi (1182--1226) who was "a conscious creator of poetry" NPEOPP. By the 13th century it gained full steam however through the Sicilian court ruled by Emperor Frederic, a poet himself. Here the sonnet was born. It was also the time of Dante Alighieri who wrote the classic Divine Comedy. From the Vita Nuova) by Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) To every single gentle heart and loving, whom these present verses may reach, so that I might have true reply of each, in our lord's name, who is Love, greetings. Almost upon us was the third hour of the time where stars shine brightly when suddenly Love appeared to me, whose essence I still recall with terror. Joyously, Love seemed to be holding, my heart in his hand, and my lady in his arms, wrapped in a cloak, sleeping. Then he awakened her, and that burning heart he made her, fearful, eat of, humbly: till finally I saw him vanish weeping. Barzelletta and Frottola Blank Verse Caccia or Catch Canzone Canzonetta Canzonetta Prime Capitolo The Cavatina Envelope Quintet Heroic Sestet Italian octave Ottavo Rima Italian quatrain Italian sestet Madrigal Madrigal proper Petrarchan Sonnet Raccontino Rispetto Sicilain Octave Sicilian Quatrain Sicilian Quintet Sicilain Septet Sicilian Sestet Sicilian Sonnet Sicilian Tercet Stornello Tenso or Tenzone Tercet Terza Rima Wreath of Sonnets