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Good article Sestina has been listed as one of the Language and literature good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
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March 21, 2012 Good article nominee Listed
May 21, 2012 Peer review Reviewed
Current status: Good article
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I'm having difficulty explaining how the sestina works: what we had before didn't explain it at all, so I think my attempt is an improvement, but can anyone help me clarify it? Also, I didn't know how to reference the web site I got those stanzas from--the fellow's web site says the poems are free to be used for any non-commercial that acceptable for here? I feel like I should know the answers to this, but my mind will not deliver them up today, it seems. Jwrosenzweig 23:41, 10 Dec 2003 (UTC)Dick

How to section[edit]

I'm not a fan at all of the "how to" section, which I believe has several faults. It needlessly duplicates the description of the changing word order that appears earlier on (and it fails to follow the pattern all the way through to the final stanza) -- if that description is poor, surely we can fix it rather than repeat it? It adds some advice for how to write a sestina....but we could have pages of advice for how to write poetry -- should we really advise what kind of words to use when constructing this kind of poem? Finally, the style becomes, in my opinion, a bit too informal and chatty. Should this section be preserved at all? If some of it is worth saving, can we better integrate it into the article? I'd like to see this article expand and become more informative, but I don't think this section is the right approach. Jwrosenzweig 09:10, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

I'm not sure what the 'How to section' refers to, but assuming it provides a description of that about the sestina whicht is fixed, then it seems fairly straightforward to me except that diagram of the retrogradatio cruciata (sp) with the spiral which I find completely inscrutable. I have no idea what relationship the arrows and their start-points and end-points have to the actual position of the end-words in stanza 2 (based on their positioning in stanza 1). The only thing that makes sense is that the word ending line 6 in stanza 1 ends line 1 in stanza 2 and sure enough the diagram has a line (semi-circular) starting at the 6 and pointing to the 1. No other line in the diagram seems to bear any explainable relationship to the movement of any other endword from stanza 1 to stanza 2. I may be simply missing something glaringly obvious, but if not, then the text of the article should explain the diagram. If I am, someone PLEASE explain it to me, preferably in words of one syllable or in extremis 2.

Also, what is the source of the diagram? A citation is really required. Ken M Quirici 18:32, 9 April 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kquirici (talkcontribs)

Do you query it? Span (talk) 18:38, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

What do you mean by 'query'? I'm asking two questions altho I may not have been clear (for which my apologies):

1. what exactly does the diagram MEAN? How can it be read to derive the sequence of end words in verse 2 for example from the end words in verse 1? The verbal description is very simple. The diagram is exceedingly obscure however intriguing it may be.

2. where does it come from? I saw it on a google search of sestina (I admit my search was far from thorough) but it was sourced to the Wikipedia article on 'sestina'. A text description of the sestina that for example comes from Brittanica 1911 (public domain) ought still to be sourced. Still more a diagram which is outside (WAY outside) the standard form of description of poetic forms. It looks vaguely like it was taken from a Renaissance text on the occult (I'm not seriously suggesting this, I'm just trying to capture its oddness smack up front in the 'sestina' article.

If you wrote the article (Span or whoever did write it) more apologies due for any offence in appearing to derogate your work. Ken M Quirici 02:10, 12 April 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kquirici (talkcontribs)

I just saw how the diagram describes the order of lines in the current verse whose last words supply the last words of the next verse - follow the arrows starting with 6 to get the sequence of current-verse line-numbers whose last words are the last words of lines 1 thru 6, in that order, of the next verse. Very nice. Extremely dumb of me not to see before. My apologies for the brouhaha. Ken M Quirici 15:05, 14 April 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kquirici (talkcontribs)

No, I wouldn't say it's obvious. If you know how it works I guess you can see it. It's a fair question about sourcing. And yes, the Britannica citation should certainly be included. I didn't add the diagram. We could take it down if there is a copyright question. I can the exploration to my to do list - please follow it up if you have info. All best wishes Span (talk) 17:34, 14 April 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, reading your comment again I see that you were not suggesting that some Britannica text is used here. Looking at the image file, editor - ZooFari - says he made the diagram himself. Image sourcing is usually cited on the file (if you click on the image on a Wikipedia article). Hope that helps. Span (talk) 20:06, 14 April 2011 (UTC)


I'm not at all sure that the diagram helps matters at all. I suggest deleting it. Span (talk) 18:55, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

-Diagram part 2- Ok, some explanation on the diagram, if anyone else comes to this page and has similar sentiments on why its up and is staying up. It doesn't have to do with movement, but choice. 6-1-5-2-4-3 is the order for the second stanza, which is also the way the spiral goes.

The movement of the words through the whole sestina is: 1-2-4-5-3-6. That is, if a word is in the first position (end of the first line) in the next stanza it will be in the second position (end of the second line).

If we look at it from a different perspective, that of choice, we see the spiral emerge. First we take the 6th word, then the 1st, then the 5th, then the 2nd, then the 4th, then the 3rd. The spiral then shows the connection between the second stanza and the first by looking back at the first. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:01, 6 October 2011 (UTC)

I'd say the diagram is a great visualization of the 2nd stanza, but beyond that, it confuses more than clarifies. Why is the 2nd stanza highlighted instead of the 3rd? It would be more useful if the spiral pattern could be shown for each of the stanzas, instead of 1 arbitrary stanza. Sah65 (talk) 22:14, 18 November 2011 (UTC)

I guess if you can understand the transition from the first stanza to the second you can get the principle of rotation. We have given the text for the first two stanzas, so the diagram (supposedly) illustrates what's going on. Span (talk) 22:30, 18 November 2011 (UTC)

Seamus Heaney's "Sestina"[edit]

Why is "Two Lorries" by Seamus Heaney included as an example of a sestina? It's not really a sestina at all and is more likely to confuse than elucidate matters for anyone who is unsure about what can be quite a complicated form to get to one's head around. There are plenty of other true sestinas to choose from so why not pick one of those instead? Please understand that this is not a matter of literary criticism, simply an attempt to make the information in the article more accessible. (talk) 18:37, 5 November 2011 (UTC)Mike

It is a sestina but feel free to change it to a poem with full line endings. Span (talk) 20:15, 5 November 2011 (UTC)

I've changed it to Auden's "Paysage Moralisé", which I think tallies better with the information in the article. (talk) 08:01, 8 November 2011 (UTC)Mike

The poem is still under copyright and too long to include the whole. I've pared it down to the first two stanzas. It shows the idea of a progression of line endings. Span (talk) 11:31, 8 November 2011 (UTC)

Of course, Auden's poem will be out of copyright before Heaney's, so not sure why that's an issue! Is there any possibility of recourse to fair use policy, seeing as the poem is being used as an educational aid and not in a commercial context? I think it's important that the entirety of the poem be quoted in order to demonstrate the full progression of the line endings, which is the key to the sestina and the reason I objected to Heaney's so-called sestina in the first place. Perhaps one of Petrarch's or Dante's sestinas may be suitable if we can't agree on an English poem, as rhyme, rhythm and language are less important than orthography in terms of a paradigmatic sestina. Though I think it would be a shame to deny Auden a place due to copyright infringement which is unlikely to be challenged... (talk) 04:49, 13 November 2011 (UTC)Mikr

I think Auden is a good choice. The issue is only the use of the full poem. I put in two stanzas of Heaney. Sestinas are pretty long poems. Guidelines encourage short excepts. What counts as 'short' is the subject of much discussion. We discussed this at length at Larkin (GA) a short while ago. Also, there isn't that much text in this article so the poem would greatly dominate. It's not ideal, but I think that having two stanzas shows the principle of rotation. There are a tonne of webpages out there, if people want to find out more. I am personally doubtful if the diagram helps much, but others seem to think it assists. Hey ho. The page certainly needs much work. It's very stuffily written with no rope thrown out to the reader. A simpler, readable (ref'd) account of how it works with some discussion of what sestinas are for and what they are good at would be a great improvement. Cited discussion of three or four poems with links would also help the page fog to lift a bit. It's on my list, but I a have a very long list. Best wishes Span (talk) 13:10, 13 November 2011 (UTC)

Major expansion / re-working[edit]

This is just a small notice to flag up the fact that I am currently undertaking a major expansion and re-working of the article. It's my intention to bring the quality up to that of a GA, and possibly an FA (within time). Any queries or concerns about my edits can be put here (or on my talk page) and I'll get back as soon as possible! MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 01:13, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

Who knew there would be so much to write about a mediaeval poetic form, eh? Despite coming across content that I didn't even know it existed (and which it seems, many other sources are unaware of either...), I think the article is approaching the stage at which it can be put into GAN and stand a fair chance of passing. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 17:53, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Sestina/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: MathewTownsend (talk · contribs) 21:32, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

  • I will attempt this, though I'm no expert in the area. MathewTownsend (talk) 21:32, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
  • I think it would help to have more in the lede (and elsewhere) about the history of this form of verse. I gather that it was first Italian, and then caught on elsewhere. But there is little in the article to explain.
  • The history of the form is given under 'Background', and the lede does summarise this. What do you think is missing currently?
  • Also, although you do a very good job of explaining the technical aspects, I don't understand "its simultaneous appeal to a strict order and emotional complexity." Where is an example of its "emotional complexity" compared to other forms of poetry.
  • That particular sentence is an attempt to summarise the rather convoluted words of Margaret Spanos. I agree, it's a bit wishy washy, I will change as soon as I figure out what to replace it with.
  • I think some more actual examples of Sestina would help, as few of the links in the article lead to more explanation or examples.
  • What do you mean by explanations or examples? To theories or associated concepts?
  • "The sestina remains a popular form of poetry, and many sestinas continue to be written by contemporary poets." It would help to have examples, names of contemporary poets who use it and titles of the poems.
  • I have some examples I could include, but I've doubted whether they would count as reliable sources (I will verify this). My anthology, regrettably, only goes up to a certain point and doesn't include a large amount of sestinas.
  • Included examples; might try to intergrate them better if possible. Is this okay (or at least better...)?
  • It may be that I'm not sophisticated enough to understand this article. My lack of "getting it" may be my fault.
  • The sestina is probably the most complicated verse form to understand, given its lexical repetition. I've tried to explain it as best I can, and in multiple ways, but if you have any suggestions?
  • What do you think?
  • I appreciate your comments very much, and presume from them that the rest of the article is okay? Thank you for choosing to do the review! MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 22:55, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

Regards, MathewTownsend (talk) 22:38, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

  • yes, the article is well written, well referenced, nicely laid out and has no other problems that I see. I understand the technical part of how it is structured. What I don't understand is the emotional part, but maybe I just have to take that on faith. You don't mention American usage, although you use W. H. Auden's work as an example. I gather there is American interest? MathewTownsend (talk) 23:13, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
  • I'll try to rework the emotional part (of just the lede or the 'Effect' section as well?). I've realised that the second part of 'Background' can be construed as talking about Britain, so I'll add a mention of America somewhere. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 23:52, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

thanks! I'd like to understand and relate to it. MathewTownsend (talk) 00:01, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

I've made several changes and also responded to some of the points you've rasied (see above). MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 13:36, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

I think I'm getting it; the article is nicely done. MathewTownsend (talk) 13:57, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

GA review-see WP:WIAGA for criteria (and here for what they are not)

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose: clear and concise, correct spelling and grammar:
    B. Complies with MoS for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and list incorporation:
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. Provides references to all sources:
    B. Provides in-line citations from reliable sources where necessary:
    C. No original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Main aspects are addressed:
    B. Remains focused:
  4. Does it follow the neutral point of view policy.
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
    B. Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:
    Good work! MathewTownsend (talk) 14:00, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

Some notes[edit]

In reply to MasterOfHisOwnDomain's request for suggestions on improvement, here are some quick notes.

  • "[L]ike many imported forms, the sestina, regardless of the way it is tailored, would seem to be one that gives more structural pleasure to the contriver than to the apprehender." (Paul Fussel, Jr.: Poetic Meter and Poetic Form, p 155) Every article needs dissent, and someone had to say this.
  • The lines near the end of Spencer's 8th Æglogue August, beginning "Ye wastefull woodes..." are a sestina variation, in which the end-words repeat: 123456, 612345, 561234... with a tornada of (1)2(3)4(5)6. This will be profitably mentioned near his buddy Sidney's variant sestina. In fact, if the "earliest" English sestina doesn't have to be a sestina (Sidney's 1590 double sestina), then really Spencer's (1579 quasi-sestina) should take that prize.
  • I think clarification on rime is in order. By my lights, a traditional sestina explicitly does not rime. Rimed versions (such as Swinburne was fond of) should be considered variants. Also, I think it would be useful to explain near the top that the repeated words more or less take the place of (both positionally and functionally) riming words one would normally expect at the end of a French form.
  • "nor do the lines follow any metrical pattern, although they are traditionally cast in iambs" is, I believe, utterly false. True there is not one universal meter that all sestinas follow, but each language certainly has a norm, and it is metrical. Princeton (1993, p 1146) states that all the lines are "unrhymed, and all decasyllabic (Eng.), hendecasyllabic (It.), or alexandrine (Fr.)." Iambs are not mentioned (though arguably they may be assumed for the English decasyllable). Focusing primarily on iambs is Anglocentric which is quite understandable in the English Wikipedia, but should not be allowed to stand in a Featured Article. On a side note I assume (contra Princeton) that the original sestina was decasyllabic, not alexandrine, but I don't have a reference right now, so that's just speculation you might follow up on.
    • (The alexandrine existed long before, but did not come to ascendancy until the mid 16th century. Gasparov (A History of European Versification 1996 p 128) to me implies that Daniel would have composed in the décasyllabe or just possibly the octosyllabe, but almost assuredly not the alexandrine. This is just for the early history -- I'm not casting doubt on Princeton's assertion that in French it is now written in the alexandrine. Clearly a better reference is needed.) Phil wink (talk) 23:46, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
      • Mostly vindicated! Kastner beginning on page 281 has some useful history. The book is quite old, but is listed by Gasparov, so should be pretty good. Gasparov also has more on fixed forms, pp 148-62 with sestina at 159 where he characterizes it as having 11-syllable lines, but this is surely in reference to the Italian, not Provençal verse. Since the sestina seems to have hit its apogee in the Italy of Dante and Petrarch, I propose that this should be presented as the "standard" sestina, even though it is not the first. Phil wink (talk) 02:53, 16 May 2012 (UTC)
  • I've just this moment copied those exact pages from Gasparov (now in my sandbox)! He has some interesting things to say about the sestina, definitely, and I haven't heard "tautologous rhyme" or "parola-rima" beore either - those will have to be included. I think you're right to say that the Italian form is probably, and should be presented as, the standard, after which there are many different alterations and experimental versions (with Swinburne taking things to the extreme...); Gasparov says as much in: "[it] received its established form in the poetry of Dante and Petrarch" (my emphasis), so he could be used to support this. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 11:02, 16 May 2012 (UTC)
  • For an example sestina, why not use Edmund Gosse's "Sestina"? I presume it's in PD by now, its subject is Arnault Daniel, and it's widely available (I see it reprinted for instance in Hollander's Rhyme's Reason and Williams's Patterns of Poetry).

All for now. Good luck. Phil wink (talk) 16:56, 13 May 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for this, wasn't expecting a response quite so quickly, and you've raised some very good points - I will try to resolve them over the coming days. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 18:59, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
I've just been working out "The Complaint of Lisa" in Excel. What is said in the article about the pattern repeating at stanza 11 is true for 12-line double sestinas that follow the 6-line pattern, but properly expanded. However Swinburne doesn't in fact follow this pattern. True, each stanza ends lines 1 & 2 with the 12th, then 1st repeating words of the previous stanza (as we'd expect) but after that, Swinburne varies the repeating pattern for each stanza -- as far as I can see it is therefore not a pattern, but the repeating words repeated in an ad lib order (other than the aforementioned first 2 lines). Even so, it is still true that not all words appear in each line, but this seems to be a deficiency, not of the pattern, but of Swinburne's own lack of Excel. See below.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
1: breath 12: me 5: sunflower 8: bed 9: thee 11: done 3: way 4: death 2: her 6: sun 12: me 7: day
2: her 1: breath 12: me 5: sunflower 8: bed 9: thee 11: done 3: way 4: death 2: her 6: sun 12: me
3: way 9: thee 6: sun 7: day 6: sun 6: sun 7: day 9: thee 5: sunflower 9: thee 8: bed 6: sun
4: death 11: done 4: death 6: sun 10: dead 10: dead 8: bed 6: sun 1: breath 3: way 4: death 3: way
5: sunflower 4: death 7: day 4: death 1: breath 4: death 12: me 5: sunflower 3: way 8: bed 3: way 9: thee
6: sun 7: day 1: breath 12: me 2: her 2: her 1: breath 10: dead 8: bed 1: breath 5: sunflower 11: done
7: day 2: her 2: her 10: dead 7: day 7: day 2: her 1: breath 7: day 7: day 9: thee 5: sunflower
8: bed 8: bed 3: way 2: her 4: death 1: breath 10: dead 7: day 10: dead 5: sunflower 10: dead 8: bed
9: thee 3: way 10: dead 3: way 3: way 12: me 5: sunflower 12: me 9: thee 10: dead 2: her 4: death
10: dead 10: dead 9: thee 11: done 12: me 8: bed 6: sun 11: done 11: done 4: death 1: breath 2: her
11: done 6: sun 11: done 1: breath 5: sunflower 5: sunflower 9: thee 8: bed 12: me 11: done 11: done 10: dead
12: me 5: sunflower 8: bed 9: thee 11: done 3: way 4: death 2: her 6: sun 12: me 7: day 1: breath
...the envoi going (12: me) 10: dead / (8: bed) 9: thee / (7: day) 4: death / (3: way) 6: sun / (2: her) 1: breath / (11: done) 5: sunflower Phil wink (talk) 20:04, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
That's highly irregular, kudos for the discovery. I hadn't really looked into it much myself, beyond the fact it's a key example of the double sestina - except it sort of isn't. Not sure how to reconcile this with the article's current content. Unless I just throw Swinburne out of the proverbial window and find someone who has some resemblance to the form ... MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 21:23, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
In my view, the only way to handle these deviations is also the most illuminating way: At the outset, firmly establish the "norm", stating that over time many variations have been played on this theme -- but without any details of these at the beginning, so that the reader can conceptualize this one standard form (and we know that task alone will be difficult enough). Then -- either in a "Variant" section or, better yet, gradually unrolled as appropriate within the "History" section -- explain the ways various poets have bent the rules to their own ends. The "freaks" must not be thrown out; rather we need to see clearly their relationship to the central tradition.
As regards Swinburne specifically, I notice Enid Hamer says that "Neither poet [Swinburne nor Drummond of Hawthornden(!)] follows the complicated laws of the Italian practice for the order in which the end-words shall recur." (The Meters of English Poetry p 293) This seems to apply to all Swinburne's sestinas, not just the double, but I have not personally verified this. PS: if you choose to use any of these references, but don't have the books to hand, let me know and I'll be happy to slap a full <cite> into the reference section. Phil wink (talk) 22:06, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
That would be a good way of doing it; I will try that. Thanks for the offer of providing those references, but because I've got a university library at hand for the moment I should be able to find them without much of a problem (will get back to you on whether that proves to be the case though ...). Nonetheless, even you providing the titles will prove really helpful - I've only heard of a few of them. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 14:20, 14 May 2012 (UTC)
Good. Then you'll find better sources than I have. My library is focused on meter, so most of my stanza info is in tiny secondary chapters. (FYI, Hamer and Fussel are not recommended on meter. Also, though Gasparov is good, it might better be entitled A Genealogy of European Meters, so in general not quite the history you'd need for this article.) I have not read them, but I notice the following works which might be of interest to you: G9, G20, G43, G53, and especially L72, as cited in...
...which is now a generation old, but utterly priceless. And free! Phil wink (talk) 23:16, 14 May 2012 (UTC)
Oh wow, that is a very useful resource - and thank you for those pointers. I will attempt seek those out and add them to the sources I've already gathered. The article will have quite the bibliography once all this is done ... MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 13:21, 15 May 2012 (UTC)

Altered graphic?[edit]

Sestina system alt.svg

There was some discussion regarding confusion about the graphics. I wonder if this isn't a little more clear. I've put in a little more labeling and tried to clarify how the spiral creates a new order. The cost is that it requires the end-words to be represented by letters -- rather than numbers which I suspect are a little more usual and which the article currently favors (since numbers are here used in the spiral we won't want 2 sets of numbers meaning two different things!). Phil wink (talk) 03:29, 15 May 2012 (UTC)

Great work! That is a definite improvement - the labelling certainly would help the un-initiated reader, and removes the need for a caption to explain the elements. Truth be told, I still find it difficult to visualise the sestina as a spiral despite sitting down with Fry's The Ode Less Travelled (which has the same type of graphic) - but no doubt some people find it useful. I don't see any way in which the current/original is superior to this, so it should be replaced. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 12:51, 15 May 2012 (UTC)
My only gripe is that the label under Stanza I would perhaps be more accurate as 'end-word', rather than 'word'. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 12:55, 15 May 2012 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done Phil wink (talk) 03:02, 16 May 2012 (UTC)
I've replaced the "retrogradatio cruciata" graphic, to one which is hopefully a little clearer. Also, I think in the first graphic my replacement of end-word numbers for letters was a mistake, so I have re-uploaded a new version. Here's my reasoning: 1) various sources use either letters or numbers for the end-words, but by far the most I'm seeing are numbers, so these are closer to a "standard" nomenclature; 2) if we get into rime schemes, we'll definitely want to reserve letters for rimes (very standard) -- better something else (numbers) is used for the end-words; 3) numbers may better mesh with any number symbolism which might creep into the article. So now I think we should make the whole article consistent and use only 1 system (numbers) for end-words -- thus I think we should remove the letters from the table; they now add nothing and can only confuse. Phil wink (talk) 02:48, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
If not more clear, the replacement graphic is at least much more informative - well done on that. I'm not so sure about the letters v. numbers debate; I tend to think that they're another way for the reader to conceptualise the end-word pattern - some people just prefer to think of it alphabetically than numerically. This would probably be why some publications choose to have both, in order to to let the reader opt to foreground whichever method they find clearer. Hence, I personally would prefer the letters to remain. Also, being capitalised, they would be less likely to conflict with an identification of rime. MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 10:31, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Notes on the new "English" section[edit]

  • First, MOHOD, thanks for cleaning up after me. I care about accuracy and clarity, but not much about MoS. So I'll try to make my edits worth cleaning up!
  • To match English I envision at least Occitan and Italian subsections before it. I think these are preferable to, say, France and Italy; for example it is easier to explain that the form traveled from Occitan to Italian to French, than from France to Italy to France.
  • Obviously, the new Spenser/Sidney/Drummond paragraph assumes that the Form section will come first. It exemplifies my ideal of a lot of structural information in History that can nevertheless be presented very briefly because the foundation has been laid. Incidentally, I still prefer Form, History, then Effect.
  • I also intend to expand the now tiny Swinburne paragraph a bit later.
  • Sidney still needs work, specifically: My sense is that the New Arcadia (confusingly the first to be published) was published in 1590 with none of these poems. The 3 poems in question (which are said I think rightly by Shapiro to come from the Old Arcadia) were then interpolated into the 1593 printing. But I don't know. Until we get better sources these questions remain:
  1. Did Sidney really introduce the form into English? (Probably unanswerable: his Arcadian poems seem to have been written 1577-80, and Spenser's published in 1579 -- without further information, there's no way to choose.)
  2. What about the 3rd sestina? Where is it? What is its form? (I just don't have it in front of me, so I don't know.) Fixed Found it; noted in article. Phil wink (talk) 00:48, 28 May 2012 (UTC)
  3. What are the publication dates of Sidney's 3 sestinas? If my suspicion above is correct, the existing Norton reference to 1590 is incorrect (MY Norton gives 1593 for "Ye Goatherd Gods"). Fixed Corrected in article, but still would be good to know just when the 2 single sestinas were first published (I assume 1593, but don't know). Phil wink (talk) 00:48, 28 May 2012 (UTC)
  • BTW, Hamer was wrong about Drummond's structure so I've removed the <ref>. I guess I'll take her full citation out, too. Cheers. Phil wink (talk) 23:23, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
  • Thanks for the content Phil. I've had work and other commitments, so haven't been able to spend much time on the article or Wikipedia generally in recent days. Hopefully, I'll be able to do a bit more in the coming weeks. Some of the statements seem like they need references, are you able to provide them? Or, for instance, are all the poems linked to (i.e., on an online poetry repository)? MasterOfHisOwnDomain (talk) 15:25, 8 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Drummond's sextains can be found on pp 43 & 83 here. "Ye Goatherd Gods" is available in a facsimile of the 1590 original on page 95v-96v here. Sidney's 2nd and 3rd on pp 570 & 575 here. If there are other references you need, let me know and I'll try to find them. Phil wink (talk) 19:20, 8 June 2012 (UTC)
  • I'm sorry, I don't know exactly how you wish to reference specific poems within the article, so I'll just note here that the 2 Swinburne poems are on pp 46-8 ("Sestina") and pp 60-8 here. I'll also mention that the Gleeson White citation I've added has a little info that may usefully be compared with Kastner on pp lxviii-lxx. Finally, I can certainly add more about the 5 other sestinas anthologized by White, or the other double-sestina mentioned by him (which I've found, and more or less shares Swinburne's structure -- or lack thereof). But perhaps it's better to get on with the 20th century. Phil wink (talk) 03:58, 10 June 2012 (UTC)