An alexandrine is a metrical verse of iambic hexameter - a line of six feet or measures, each of which has two syllables with the stress on the first beat.
Alexandrines are common in French poetry of the early modern and modern period and much less common in English, which is fond of an iambic pentameter or 5-foot verse. In the poetry of Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene 8 lines of pentameter are followed by an alexandrine, the 6-foot line slowing the regular rhythm of the 5-foot lines.
- A needless alexandrine ends the song
- that like a wounded snake, drags its slow length along.