The Chaucer Review: An Indexed Bibliography (Vols. 1-30)Return to the Subject List
Lynn, Karen. "Chaucer's Decasyllabic Line: The Myth of the Hundred-Year Hibernation." 13 (1978): 116-27.
For 100 years after Chaucer, the iambic pentameter line seems to have disappeared. Careful examination, however, reveals that it was merely camouflaged by meter and style. Later writers like Lydgate, Skelton, and Dunbar employed an expanded license and added possibilities to the language and meter they used. When subjected to computer analysis, Chaucer's lines seem less metrically complex, whereas those of later authors consistently use more intricate stress patterns.