One is Italian in origin and the other English.

The Petrarchan evolved first, and there were English authors that used this style. The petrarchan sonnet has a set rhyme scheme. The first eight lines, or octet, rhyme as follows: abba abba. The last six lines, or sestet, can have various rhyme schemes. The beginning of the sestet marks the volta, or turn in the sonnet. The sestet is often viewed as the solution to a problem posed in the octet. Soon after the Italian sonnet was developed the English sonnet was developed, based on the Italian. It is often called Shakespearean because he popularized it, not because he invented it. A Shakespearean sonnet is written in iambic pentameter, which means that each line is 10 syllables long. All Shakespearean sonnets have fourteen lines. Last, most sonnets also have a volta, or a turning point.

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