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Welcome to Young Writers' free Poetry Glossary

What is a Syllable?

A syllable is a single unit of written or spoken word, an unbroken sound used to make up words.

Examples of Syllables

One syllable words known as monosyllabic:

Cat, dog, car, sky.

Two syllables words known as disyllabic:

Ho-tel, Po-em, Chor-us.

Three syllables words known as trisyllabic:

Beau-ti-ful, met-a-phor, po-e-try.

More than three syllables words known as polysyllabic:


Syllables are used in poetry to give rhythm and depth to sentences.

Why don't you try writing a poem using syllables and enter it into one of our poetry competitions.

More poetry terms below.

Thank you for using Young Writers' Poetry Glossary

Have you visited the rest of our website yet? There are lot more free resources such as poetry workshops, activities and games for young writers as well as lesson plans and themed packs for teachers - come have a look!

Please see below for other poetry terms!
Please also visit our Poetry Glossary – Poetry Types

Teach in the USA? Then why not visit our American site today!