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Quinzaine is a word of French language derivation: 'a quinzaine' is to Fifteen as 'a dozen' is to Twelve, and 'a trental' is to Thirty. It has various contexts of use in English.

Quinzaine (poetic form)[edit]

A Quinzaine is an unrhymed verse of fifteen syllables. The word comes from the French word quinze, meaning fifteen. The syllables are distributed over three lines so that there are seven syllables in the first line, five in the second line, and three in the third line (7/5/3). The first line makes a statement. The next two lines ask a question relating to that statement.


I would like to drive my car
Can you drive a car?
Are you fast?

I'm a Wikipedian.
Why do I do it?

Quinzaine (date calculation)[edit]

Quinzaine is a term used in medieval and ecclesiastical calculation of a date, working from a given Feast day of the Calendar. The quinzaine of a feast is a day fifteen days after the feast, counting in both the feast itself and the day calculated. It is a variant of the term Quindene:[1] it is used in the same way that Octave is used to signify eight days (one week, counting in the initial feast).


'The quinzaine of the Nativity of St John the Baptist.'

The Nativity of St. John the Baptist is 24 June. June has 30 days: the quinzaine is therefore 8 July.


  1. ^ The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, 3rd Edition, revised (Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1964) printing, II: N-Z.