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[si-zhoo r-uh, -zoo r-uh, siz-yoo r-uh] /sɪˈʒʊər ə, -ˈzʊər ə, sɪzˈyʊər ə/
noun, plural caesuras, caesurae
[si-zhoo r-ee, -zoo r-ee, siz-yoo r-ee] /sɪˈʒʊər i, -ˈzʊər i, sɪzˈyʊər i/ (Show IPA)
Prosody. a break, especially a sense pause, usually near the middle of a verse, and marked in scansion by a double vertical line, as in know then thyselfpresume not God to scan.
Classical Prosody. a division made by the ending of a word within a foot, or sometimes at the end of a foot, especially in certain recognized places near the middle of a verse.
any break, pause, or interruption.
Also, cesura.
Origin of caesura
1550-60; < Latin, equivalent to caes(us) cut (past participle of caedere) (caed- cut + -tus past participle suffix) + -ūra -ure
Related forms
caesural, caesuric, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for caesura
Contemporary Examples
  • This is a detail from "caesura" by Emily Henretta, on view now at Room East in New York.

    Printed Circuit Blake Gopnik October 3, 2013
Historical Examples
British Dictionary definitions for caesura


noun (pl) -ras, -rae (-riː)
(in modern prosody) a pause, esp for sense, usually near the middle of a verse line Usual symbol |
(in classical prosody) a break between words within a metrical foot, usually in the third or fourth foot of the line
Derived Forms
caesural, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin, literally: a cutting, from caedere to cut
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for caesura

1550s, from Latin caesura, "metrical pause," literally "a cutting," from past participle stem of caedere "to cut down" (see -cide).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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