Definition of Onegin Stanza
Onegin Stanza can be defined as,
“A stanza form having 14 lines of iambic tetrameter with the rhyming scheme ababccddeffegg”.
This stanza form is unique in character since it implicates a masculine/feminine rhyming aspect. “a”, “c” and “d” in the above rhyming letters indicate feminine rhymes while the remaining ones illustrate masculine rhymes.
History and Origin
The Onegin stanza was devised by Alexandr Sergeevich Pushkin for his epic novel, Eugene Onegin. Unlike the Petrarchan sonnet or Shakespearean sonnet, the Onegin stanza does not divide into further small stanzas of four lines or two in an obvious manner.
Poem Examples of Onegin Stanza
What is translation? On a platter
A poet’s pale and glaring head,
A parrot’s screech, a monkey’s chatter,
And profanation of the dead.
The parasites you were so hard on
Are pardoned if I have your pardon,
O, Pushkin, for my stratagem:
I traveled down your secret stem,
And reached the root, and fed upon it;
Then, in a language newly learned,
I grew another stalk and turned
Your stanza patterned on a sonnet,
Into my honest roadside prose–
All thorn, but cousin to your rose
- Eugene Onegin (Translation)
Additional examples of Onegin Stanza form can be found in The Nutcracker by Jon Stallworthy and The Golden Gate by Vikram Seth.