- identity in sound of some part, especially the end, of words or lines of verse.
- a word agreeing with another in terminal sound: Find is a rhyme for mind and womankind.
- verse or poetry having correspondence in the terminal sounds of the lines.
- a poem or piece of verse having such correspondence.
- verse(def 4).
verb (used with object), rhymed, rhym·ing.
- to treat in rhyme, as a subject; turn into rhyme, as something in prose.
- to compose (verse or the like) in metrical form with rhymes.
- to use (a word) as a rhyme to another word; use (words) as rhymes.
verb (used without object), rhymed, rhym·ing.
- to make rhyme or verse; versify.
- to use rhyme in writing verse.
- to form a rhyme, as one word or line with another: a word that rhymes with orange.
- to be composed in metrical form with rhymes, as verse: poetry that rhymes.
- rhyme or reason, logic, sense, or plan: There was no rhyme or reason for what they did.
- identity of the terminal sounds in lines of verse or in words
- a word that is identical to another in its terminal sound“while” is a rhyme for “mile”
- a verse or piece of poetry having corresponding sounds at the ends of the linesthe boy made up a rhyme about his teacher
- any verse or piece of poetry
- rhyme or reason sense, logic, or meaningthis proposal has no rhyme or reason
- to use (a word) or (of a word) to be used so as to form a rhyme; be or make identical in sound
- to render (a subject) into rhyme
- to compose (verse) in a metrical structure
“agreement in terminal sounds,” 1560s, partially restored spelling, from Middle English ryme, rime (c.1200) “measure, meter, rhythm,” later “rhymed verse” (mid-13c.), from Old French rime (fem.), related to Old Provençal rim (masc.), earlier *ritme, from Latin rithmus, from Greek rhythmos “measured motion, time, proportion” (see rhythm).
In Medieval Latin, rithmus was used for accentual, as opposed to quantitative, verse, and accentual verse usually was rhymed, hence the sense shift. Persistence of older form is due to popular association with Old English rim “number,” from PIE root *re(i)- “to reason, count” (see read (v.)). Phrase rhyme or reason “good sense” (chiefly used in the negative) is from late 15c. (see reason (n.)). Rhyme scheme is attested from 1931. Rhyme royal (1841) is a stanza of seven 10-syllable lines rhymed a-b-a-b-b-c-c.
“make verses, make rhymes,” c.1300, rimen, from Old French rimer, from rime “verse” (see rhyme (n.)). Attested 1670s (of words) in sense “to have the same end sound.” Modern spelling is from 1650s, by influence of rhythm. Related: Rhymed; rhyming. The phrase rhyming slang is attested from 1859.
A similarity of sound between words, such as moon, spoon, croon, tune, and June. Rhyme is often employed in verse.